Rotary welcomes new members, learns about WVWC protocols

BUCKHANNON — The Rotary Club of Buckhannon-Upshur had the pleasure of announcing four new members during their Tuesday Zoom meeting. The Club is now over 40 members, according to President Julie Keehner. The newest additions to the club are Linda Wellings, Katherine “KD” Coleman, Erika Klie Kolenich and Brenda Lilly. These new members will officially be inducted during the next Rotary meeting. Member Dean Everett expressed that each of these members are of high quality and will be great additions to Rotary.

Club member and VP of Marketing at St. Joseph’s Hospital, Lisa Wharton explained that the vaccination clinics are going wonderfully and thanked Rotarians for helping out. Thus far, they’re reportedly receiving great feedback from the community. The clinics are currently held every Wednesday and Friday. Wharton reported that they were scheduled to vaccinate approximately 700 new people this week and 880 the following week. Although this is a lot of people the next couple of weeks, Wharton is hopeful they will come down to smaller numbers in the following weeks.

Additionally, March 30 will be their “Save Lives, Feed Families” blood drive, where every donor equals a donation to the Parish House. Individuals will also be welcome to drop food items off for the Parish House, regardless of donating blood. It is preferred and recommended that people register online. The Rotary Club of Buckhannon Upshur is also partnering with St. Joseph’s Hospital for April and May blood screenings. According to member Rich Clemens, there are already approximately 325 reservations.

Director of Security and Greek Life at West Virginia Wesleyan College John Bohman explained to club members the safety measures put into place at the college since the beginning of the pandemic. Bohman reported that approximately this time last year when COVID-19 began, with his guidance in addition to many others, a task force was put together. This task force was compiled of 12 different subgroups and committee chairs. The people selected to be on this committee were selected based on expertise, Bohman explained.

One of the first things WVWC’s task force initiated was plexiglass and special seating in spaces in order to appropriately socially distance. All places are operating at approximately 40%, he reported. He added that there is alcohol spray in every space and a bottle was put into the hands of every staff member. To date, WVWC has used four 55-gallon drums of alcohol spray. According to Bohman, the spray kills the virus in 10 seconds, and it does not need wiped down. They’re also utilizing peroxide fogging with eight devices on campus.

Requiring students to acquire a negative test result seven days prior to arriving on campus was also key, Bohman explained. Recently, the college also went from a 10-day quarantine to a 14-day guideline, per recommendation from the local health department. Fortunately, WVWC was prepared and continues to provide online instruction for those students requiring quarantine. The faculty at WVWC is able to provide in-person and online instruction simultaneously in order for students to continue uninterrupted learning. Bohman expressed that the faculty deserve a lot of praise for their quick adaptation to the different modalities of teaching to ensure students are able to receive the instruction they need.

WVWC also implemented a strict travel policy for students, requiring them to fill out a request before traveling away from campus. Bohman explained they wanted to essentially create a bubble on campus. They have extended the policy for the entire semester. Masks are also still enforced, and students are required to wear them in the appropriate spaces or will be asked to leave campus. Bohman reported there have been very few students resistant to the mask mandate and none that have had to leave campus due to this issue.

These are just a few of the COVID-19 protocols and procedures WVWC has put in place to ensure the safety of their campus community, as well as the entire Upshur community.



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