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By John Baker Brown, Campus Life Communications

The impact of the worldwide COVID-19 outbreak has demanded dramatic changes in daily life nationwide and worldwide. In March, keeping the Emory community safe required transitioning 16,000 students to remote learning and more university employees than ever to working from home.

Among countless other changes, two normally heavily trafficked Campus Life facilities, the Alumni Memorial University Center (AMUC) and Emory Student Center (ESC), were closed to students, most employees, and the public. 

The impact of the coronavirus pandemic means some staff members had to adapt to home offices at a time when, for many, normally full workloads were more demanding than ever. Similarly, employees adapting to the new limitations of working on campus also find their workloads have increased.

Such is the case for Campus Life's facilities team, according to Bob Crowder, assistant director for facilities in the Office of Student Center Operations and Events. The pre-COVID-19 norm called for deep cleaning and disinfecting of facilities at the end of each semester – fall, spring, and summer. 

The new norm, which began in March, includes ongoing deep cleaning and disinfecting of AMUC and ESC offices, meeting rooms, breakrooms, and dining areas. Spaces used daily are cleaned and disinfected daily whenever possible. Other spaces are treated soon after occupancy.

Cleaning and sanitizing a room
Above: Wearing appropriate PPE, event management technician Lester Hardy (on left) and
event management lead Darryl Flemming sanitize a meeting room.

Employees returning to their offices may find that workspaces have been cleaned and disinfected since the last day they visited. Selected meeting rooms in the AMUC and ESC have been closed and locked until further notice after the cleaning protocol has been completed. 

“The first step is deep cleaning. Our team members wear personal protective equipment, including masks and gloves, and use cloths and cleaning solution to manually scrub furniture, desktops, and other surfaces,” Crowder said. 

“The second step is fogging the room with a fine mist to disinfect all exposed surfaces. The whole process is something like cleaning your hands thoroughly with a good-quality hand sanitizer.” 

Flemming locking down a meeting room.
Above: Event management lead Darryl Flemming locks down
a sanitized room being taken out of service.

According to Crowder, the work of his facilities team complements a campus-wide cleaning protocol by the university’s Campus Services team. Its employees clean and disinfect common areas of the ESC, as well as classrooms, meeting rooms, residence halls, and a range of other facilities throughout the university. Campus Services will also resume cleaning AMUC and ESC offices in the near future. 

“Campus Life and Campus Services are working together like the rest of the university to do what needs to be done,” said Crowder. “We all share the same goal – keeping this campus clean and safe for everyone here now and for our students when we are able to welcome them back to Emory.”

Learn more

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