Health and Safety

Health and Safety

Keeping our community safE

Your health and safety is of the utmost priority for our WMU-Cooley students, faculty and staff. All decisions by the WMU-Cooley COVID-19 Task Force are being made with that focus in mind. If you ever need to talk to someone about your physical or mental health, we are here to help. Students, please contact your campus assistant dean. Faculty and staff, contact the Human Resources Office at [email protected].  


CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF)

Legislation passed by Congress to establish the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and funded the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) to provide emergency financial aid grants to students and institutions. We have provided a frequently asked questions guide as well as our CARES Act report below.


CARES Act INFO

 

 

 

WMU-Cooley Update (June 29, 2021)

Return to Campus Plan and Student FAQs

WMU-Cooley is committed to providing an effective learning environment while preserving the safety of its students, faculty and staff. The school is adopting the following requirements, effective September 7, 2021, for the Michaelmas term: 

  1. Do not come to campus if you are experiencing any symptoms related to COVID-19.
  2. If you are on campus and begin to experience symptoms, leave campus immediately.
  3. Wash your hands and utilize hand sanitizer frequently.
  4. Masks/Face Coverings:
    1. If you are fully vaccinated, you are not required to wear a mask or face covering, but may do so if you wish.
    2. If you are not fully vaccinated, you must wear a mask or face covering which covers your nose and mouth at all times while on campus, including between bites or sips while eating or drinking. Face shields or goggles are not acceptable alternatives to masks.
  5. IMPORTANT - By not wearing a mask while on campus, a person will be deemed to be affirmatively representing that he or she is fully vaccinated against COVID-19.  Willful misrepresentation of one’s vaccination status or a valid exemption will constitute violation of a policy of the school and result in serious consequences, up to and including action under the Disciplinary Procedures (for students), termination (for employees and contractors), and trespass to campus (for visitors).

While the school is not requiring vaccinations to return to campus, we strongly encourage everyone to get fully vaccinated and hope to provide on-campus options to facilitate this effort.

We expect to return to our normal attendance policies for all students (vaccinated or not) by the fall. This is yet another reason to get vaccinated—it will protect you against a virus that could, among other things, cause you to exceed your allotted absences for the semester. 

The above requirements represent our minimum safety standards. You may choose more stringent measures. For example, our faculty has adopted a principle that all faculty members must be vaccinated and is voluntarily disclosing their vaccination status to the administration. Fully vaccinated individuals may decide they would like to continue to wear masks. Someone who is fully vaccinated may still wear a mask at times to help protect others who are unable to get vaccinated. 

These policies are applicable to all students, faculty, staff, visitors, and contractors.  To ensure consistency with CDC guidance, these policies will apply uniformly throughout the school; individual managers or faculty members may not adopt separate rules for departments, classes, or events. 

In addition to these measures, the school will continue to require a health screening for access to the building and all in-person classes have been scheduled in rooms that will accommodate 3-feet of social distancing with cleaning between classes.  

The school will continue to monitor local conditions carefully and may make adjustments to these policies as appropriate. Student FAQs will be available on Cooley Connect.
 

WMU-Cooley Update (May 24, 2021)

Announcement of plan to return to in-person instruction in Michaelmas 2021 this fall. All first-semester courses and most required courses will be taught in-person and in accordance with the most up-to-date CDC safety guidelines. The Michaelmas Term 2021 schedule will be posted no later than Friday, July 2, 2021. As the fall term approaches, we will continue to refine our existing safety protocols and provide updated information before the beginning of the term.  You can always find up-to-date information at https://connect.cooley.edu/pages/coronavirus-updates
 

WMU-Cooley Update (May 24, 2021)

Announcement that libraries are open the following hours beginning Monday, May 3, 2021:

  • Monday through Thursday 8:45am to 10:00pm (GR closes at 5pm on Monday)
  • Friday 8:45am to 5:00pm
  • Saturday and Sunday Noon to 8:00pm

The Reference Desk is staffed the following hours:

  • Monday through Thursday 9:00am to 9:00pm
  • Friday 9:00am to 6:00pm
  • Saturday and Sunday Noon to 6:00pm

Hours may be adjusted based on actual use by students or the availability of staff. 

Connect to the Reference Desk via email ([email protected]), phone (1-866-REF-DESK; 1-866-733-4475), or chat (Cooley Reference Desk via Google Hangouts). Our chat connection does allow for video interaction. In addition, Webex consultation meetings can be scheduled with any Reference Librarian that allow for screen sharing and individualized research training.

Our current rules for Library use take into account students' needs during this unusual time. Please reach out to Library staff if you have any questions. 

All students and July bar takers must sign in and out at the Access Control Desk. Access Control will verify student and July bar taker status. All students and bar takers will be required to have their temperatures taken and fill out a form regarding their current health status each day they enter a facility. 

Students and bar takers must sign in each day at the Library for private, individual studying. Study rooms should be used first, with designated carrels or table spots being available when study rooms are filled. That room or carrel is only to be used by the person to which it is assigned during that day. No group studying. No guests are allowed. Only registered WMU Cooley students and graduates studying for the July 2021 bar exam are allowed to sign up for a space. A limited number of seats will be available at each location. No food is allowed in the library. Water fountains are closed. Please bring in your own water. 

Students must wear face masks when not in private enclosed study rooms. Those using open carrels must use face masks when studying. All library patrons must use face masks when moving around the facility. Movement around the building and in and out of the building multiple times is discouraged. Social distancing is required. Reference librarians will be available through electronic means (email, chat, and video chat). There will be limited Circulation Desk services at this time. Printing may be done via your personal computer to a designated copier/printer but computer labs and printers in those labs will not be available as labs remain closed at this time. Direct calls concerning printing to the IT Student Helpdesk at 517-371-5140, x3300.

Please respect all closed off area signs. Students are not allowed in staff areas. Student lounges and vending areas will be open, as designated by the campus administration, to students and bar takers at all campuses for food retrieval and consumption only. Please follow all signs and rules concerning these areas. Applicable Governor's Orders in either Michigan or Florida as well as local rules may modify hours or access. We reserve the right to change these hours, rules, and procedures at any time. The violation of any of the above rules may result in the suspension of library study privileges. A phone number or location of a staff member on duty will be posted at the Library sign-in location if questions arise.
 

WMU-Cooley Update (Thursday, August 6, 2020)

Due to the current COVID conditions in Florida and the state orders in Michigan, the law school will continue our current remote work arrangements into the fall semester. Only those employees unable to perform the functions of their job remotely will report to the office. Employees able to work remotely will continue to do so. 
 

WMU-Cooley Update (Monday, May 11, 2020 - 5:00 p.m.) 

 

WMU-Cooley remains committed to ensuring a safe and healthy environment for employees. For this reason, non-faculty staff members who can perform the functions of their job remotely will continue to do so through August 16, 2020, or until advised otherwise. All supervisors will review and document each non-faculty staff member's ability to work remotely, or for the necessity to work on-site.
 

WMU-Cooley Update (Monday, April 27, 2020 - 5:00 p.m.) 

All WMU-Cooley Law School campuses will be closed through at least May 15, 2020. Employees will continue to work remotely.  
 

WMU-Cooley Update (Thursday, April 9, 2020 - 5:00 p.m.) 

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer extended the stay-at-home order for Michigan citizens through April 30, 2020. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis issued a stay-at-home order last week that also extends through April 30, 2020. The law school facilities will remain closed through April 30, 2020. Employees will continue to work remotely until the end of the month. Thank you for supporting our students during this remote work and learning period.  
 

​WMU-Cooley To Continue Online Classes Until May 24, 2020 (Friday, March 27, 2020 - 5:00 p.m.) 

The COVID-19 virus continues to affect our lives in unanticipated ways. To provide as much clarity to our students, faculty and staff as possible, the law school is taking proactive steps. For these reasons, regardless of whether governmental restrictions may be lifted in the meantime, WMU-Cooley is committing to operate in remote status through May 24, 2020 (Week 3 of the Spring Trinity term). WMU-Cooley's COVID-19 Task Force will review regularly any decision to extend the remote status period, and will provide at least three weeks notice for when students will return to campus. All decisions are being made with health and safety as our first priority.
 

Coronavirus Update (Wednesday, March 25, 2020 - 4:30 p.m.) 

For the health and safety of the faculty, staff, and students of our Florida community, WMU-Cooley Law School will be closing the Tampa Bay Campus at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 26, 2020, with employees working from home through Monday, April 13, 2020.
 

Amended Grading and Final Exam Guidelines (Wednesday, March 25, 2020 - 8:30 a.m.) 

WMU-Cooley continues to express its utmost concern for the safety and welfare of its students, faculty, and staff and the successful completion of the current academic semester. In doing so the Law School has adopted amended grading and final exam administration guidelines for the Hilary (current) 2020 semester only.  Students, faculty, and staff can access the detailed guidelines on the Cooley Connect portal.
 

Coronavirus Update (Monday, March 23, 2020 - 6:00 p.m.) 

Michigan’s Governor, Governor Gretchen Whitmer, has issued an order to “stay at home,” effective March 24, 2020 at 12:01 a.m. through April 13, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. This order is a requirement to suspend activities that are not necessary to sustain or protect life to help suppress the spread of COVID-19.  Effective, Tuesday, March 23, 2020, all Michigan employees will begin to work remotely. Florida employees should prepare to work remotely, with a closure coming later in the week. This order is a requirement to suspend activities that are not necessary to sustain or protect life to help suppress the spread of COVID-19. There are a few exceptions to the order, workers who are necessary to allow the businesses to maintain equipment, ensure security, process transactions (including payroll and benefits), or facilitate the ability of other workers to work remotely may leave their homes for work.

Coronavirus Update (Wednesday, March 18, 2020 - 5:00 p.m.)

To help protect those employees who must be present to do their job, WMU-Cooley has asked all employees who are able to work remotely to do so. The building remains open for those whose duties require them to be on site. 

Coronavirus Update (Tuesday, March 17, 2020 - 2:00 p.m.)

WMU-Cooley Law School Graduation Ceremonies Announcement - Concern for the health and safety of members of the WMU-Cooley community and their loved ones continues to guide the decisions made by the law school’s leaders. Over the past several days, our Federal, State, and local governments have issued rules and guidelines to direct behavior and activity. By now everyone is aware that these guidelines limit the size of gatherings. Additionally, health officials are indicating the virus’ impact may potentially continue into the late spring and summer months. These developments regrettably dictate the necessity to POSTPONE the law school’s April (Florida) and May (Michigan) 2020 graduation ceremonies. These ceremonies are being postponed, but not cancelled. Members of the upcoming class will have a graduation ceremony at a later date. Graduates, their families, and friends will be given enough time to plan to attend. The ability to make travel plans, prepare for the bar exam, and availability of venue will be considerations for choosing new graduation dates. Be assured the degrees for graduates will be conferred as normal by action of WMU-Cooley’s Board of Directors upon certification of completion of the degree in early May 2020. All bar certifications, verifications for employment, and other school services will be delivered at the usual time of the semester. Please direct any questions or comments about graduation to [email protected].

Coronavirus Update (Friday, March 13, 2020 - 4:30 p.m.)

  • BUILDINGS:WMU-Cooley buildings are open to faculty and staff only until further notice.
  • CLASSES: Classes will remain online until Sunday, April 12, 2020 - the last day of classes.
  • EXAMS: If the virus if under control, it's possible the law school may have exams live and on campus, starting April 13, 2020. A final decision about exams will be made no later than Friday, March 27, 2020. Exams will happen as scheduled, even if they occur online.
     

Coronavirus Update (Friday, March 13, 2020 - 9 a.m.)

WMU-Cooley Law School has suspended all in-person classes for March 13, 2020. Starting Saturday, March 14, 2020, all classes will be online until further notice.

Coronavirus Update (Wednesday, March 11, 2020)

WMU-Cooley Law School has formed a Coronavirus, COVID-19 Task Force that is formulating policies to address the health and safety of students, staff and faculty during this health crisis.

Beginning immediately, all weekend classes will be held online until further notice. Officials will continually be evaluating the need to prepare to offer ALL classes online, if it becomes necessary. 

Those who are ill should stay home. Policies are being established that will permit students to attend class remotely, if necessary, so that their education will be uninterrupted. We continue to follow the Centers for Disease Control’s guidelines.

Please see the information below from the CDC as it relates to Coronavirus and preventative measures to mitigate the spread of this and other viruses.

CONTACT

WMU-Cooley Law School
300 South Capitol Avenue
Lansing, Michigan 48933 
(517) 371-5140

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Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School is an independent, private, non-profit educational institution affiliated with Western Michigan University. The affiliation between WMU and WMU-Cooley, which are legally and financially independent institutions, will end on or before November 5, 2023. As an independent institution, the Law School is solely responsible for its academic program. Accredited by the American Bar Association and the Higher Learning Commission. 

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