Coronavirus Update

Latest Update:

August 3, 2021

Dear Student,
As you are preparing to return to the Trinity Baptist College campus, I wanted to tell you that we are really looking forward to seeing you again! Please be aware that in the past week we have seen a rise in COVID-19 (specifically the Delta variant) cases in our community and the greater Duval county area.
In order to ensure a safe and smooth transition to the start of another academic year every student must be committed to protecting their own health as well as the members of the TBC community. This variant is showing to be 200% more contagious than any previous variant we have seen. While many will experience only minor symptoms, younger, healthy people are experiencing severe illness. Taking precautions against COVID is not new to any of us but it is more critical now than ever.
Ways you can protect you and the TBC community:

  • Avoid close contact with people outside of your roommates/family – hold meetings in larger rooms or remotely
  • Avoid crowds where you are unable to spread out, especially indoors
  • Avoid sick people
  • Get vaccinated

PLEASE DO NOT RETURN TO CAMPUS AND CONTACT LAUREL GROFF IF ANY OF THE FOLLOWING APPLY:

  •  If you or anyone in your household is experiencing ANY ONE symptom: headache, sore throat, cold symptoms, fever, cough, body aches, fatigue
  • If you or anyone in your household has been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID

Laurel Groff – Best contact by email: health@tcajax.org

Additional Information Related to COVID-19:

  •  Masks are encouraged for non-vaccinated students but not required at this time. However, if community spread occurs, we may find it necessary to implement an updated masking policy
  •  Students who have been vaccinated will not be required to quarantine following contact with someone testing positive for the virus unless the vaccinated student exhibits virus symptoms
  • TBC will be conducting contact tracing, especially in the residence halls and classrooms where distancing is not feasible
  • A vaccination clinic will be held on the TBC campus Friday, August 20 from 12pm-2:30pm. Vaccinations are not required but highly encouraged.

Additional questions or concerns should be directed to the Student Life Office (studentlifeoffice@tbc.org)

Questions about the COVID-19 vaccines? The links below will provide you with great information so that you can make in informed decision on vaccination.
https://www.mayoclinic.org/coronavirus-covid-19/vaccine

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/keythingstoknow.html?s_cid=11438:covid%2019%20vaccination:sem.ga:p:RG:GM:gen:PTN:FY21

https://www.healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/conditions/COVID-19/Pages/The-Science-Behind-the-COVID-19-Vaccine-Parent-FAQs.aspx

Jeremiah Stanley
Vice President of Student Affairs
Trinity Baptist College

 


June 8, 2021

We are extremely thankful for God’s protection over us during the past 2020-21 academic year. We were one of a small percentage of colleges and universities that attempted to reopen with in-person classes and on-campus housing open.

Knowing that there would be challenges along the way,  we committed to offering our students the ability to maintain their academic pursuits in a way that best fit their learning needs.   It was important to us to continue to provide a community of encouragement, relationships and spiritual growth that would allow them to thrive.

Obstacles did arise, but we are grateful for the leadership of our campus health director, Laurel Groff, who helped us develop and implement policies and procedures that would help to ensure the health and safety of our student body. We had a total number of 39 positive cases throughout the course of the year.

We are pleased to report that we were able to finish the academic year successfully and held our Commencement in person on May 8th.  

Jeremiah Stanley
VP of Student Affairs


April 9, 2021

Dear Students:

I wanted to take a moment to update everyone on our current situation related to COVID-19. This week we have seen an uptick in cases and there are currently 11 positive cases in our total student population including commuter and resident students. We are confident that we have a good handle on the situation, and we are following the same procedures and guidelines that have enabled us to keep our on-campus classes and residence halls open throughout this entire academic year. We are currently four weeks from graduation, and we believe that following our established guidelines which include isolation of positive cases, contact tracing and quarantine will allow us to reduce community spread and keep our student body healthy and safe.

Our campus health director, Laurel Groff, is working closely with TBC administrators to ensure that best practices in alignment with both local Duval county health officials and the CDC are being followed. Positive cases within our student body are also being reported to the Duval county health department. Information has been provided to students concerning the availability of testing and options for vaccination should students desire to take that step.

Considering the positive cases over the past several days the college is taking the following actions in order to help maintain control of community spread:

  1. The Trinity Baptist Church singles ministry (Rooted) weekly gathering was cancelled for this Wednesday.
  2. All baseball practices/games have been cancelled through Sunday, April 11. We will resume normal activity pending team wide COVID testing on Sunday.
  3. Chapel has been cancelled for this Friday.

I am encouraging each one of you as students to do your part in keeping our campus community healthy. You can accomplish this by taking the following steps daily.

  1. Wear a mask indoors and maintain social distance.
  2. Wash your hands frequently and avoid high risk behaviors.
  3. Communicate with the Student Life Office immediately if you experience any new onset of symptoms related to COVID-19. (In many recent cases “allergy” type symptoms have been reported as early indicators)

My belief is that if we all do our part, we will be able to finish out this last month of the spring semester and see a strong finish to the academic year. Students should not feel at risk to attend classes. We are not seeing community spread happening from class attendance based on contact tracing. We also do not anticipate a need to move in-person classes to online.

We began this year back in August of 2020 and God has been very gracious to us over the past 8 months. We knew the risks that would be involved with opening our campus and residence halls, but we were all committed to making the effort because we believed the reward of growing and learning in community together was worth it. Let’s stay strong and continue pushing forward to the finish line as safely and resolutely as possible!

Jeremiah Stanley
VP of Student Affairs


February 12, 2021

We are grateful that God has allowed us to open our campus, residence halls and classrooms for the spring 2021 semester. The enforcement of face coverings inside of buildings, enhanced cleaning procedures, along with social distancing have proven to be effective strategies to mitigate potential spread of the virus. Our number of positive cases on campus has been very low. We are grateful for the wisdom and guidance of our campus health director, Laurel Groff, who assists us with implementing policies of isolation and quarantine in the instance of a positive COVID test. Keeping in mind the safety and well-being of our campus community, we will continue to enforce our safety protocols and follow the guidance of our local health authorities.


November 20, 2020

We remain thankful for the combined efforts of our community; however, at the same time, we must keep up our vigilance. As we approach the end of the fall semester, we are grateful for the fact that we have been able to continue in-class learning and have kept our residence halls open. We want to acknowledge the diligence shown by our students, faculty, and visitors adhering to our on-campus safety procedures. The enforcement of face coverings inside of buildings, enhanced cleaning procedures, along with social distancing have proven to be effective strategies to mitigate potential spread of the virus. Keeping in mind the safety and well-being of our campus community, we will continue to enforce our safety protocols and follow the guidance of our local health authorities.

Face Coverings:

We do not anticipate a change in the recommendations of the CDC and local health authorities for the use of face coverings in campus buildings. Even if Duval County lifts its city mandate, schools will most likely continue to require face coverings for the entire academic year.

Shared Responsibility:

The more we behave as a community, with a shared sense of health and well-being, the more we will be able to ensure an open and safe learning environment for every student and professor. We are not suggesting that everyone goes into isolation. We are simply presenting a pathway forward that touches the areas where all of us can put into action best practices and thoughtful behaviors. We have done so well thus far, let’s continue.

Pre-screening at Home or in Residence Halls:

If you are displaying any symptoms related to COVID-19 or if you have been exposed to anyone that has tested positive for COVID-19 please do not attend classes! Contact the appropriate Dean of RA for instructions. They will get you into contact with Laurel Groff, our Campus Health Director, who will provide further instructions. Also, if you have been exposed to anyone awaiting COVID-19 test results or if you have been tested and are still awaiting results, do not attend classes! Contact the appropriate Dean for further instructions.

COVID-19 Testing:

Free rapid testing is now available by appointment 7 days a week at the Regency testing center. Please note that most rapid tests are antigen tests and may be less accurate than a molecular or PCRtest.

Thank you for taking the time to review and support our efforts. We are thankful for the opportunity to have our students fully engaged in on-campus learning.


June 4, 2020

TBC Graduation Ceremony

TBC is excited to announce that we have tentatively scheduled on-campus graduation ceremonies for Saturday, August 8, 2020! We know you have worked hard and we are happy to be able to publicly recognize your achievements.

You will pick up your regalia in the auditorium choir room 8:30-10:15 Rehearsal for graduation will take place at 10:30 a.m. in the church auditorium. You will have time for lunch and then return at 1:30 to get in place for the 2:30 ceremony. Your family may enter the auditorium after 1:30.

So that we can properly prepare please complete this form. It is important that each graduate complete the form whether or not you plan to return to campus to march.

We do not currently know what, if any, restrictions will still be in place on this date so we will continue to monitor them and let you know. We will follow any social distancing guidelines in place and will notify you of those guidelines as well as post them in the auditorium. If you or your guests are exhibiting signs of COVID-19 or if you’ve been exposed within 14 days of graduation, we request that you not attend the ceremony. We do not currently anticipate limiting the number of guests, but we will continue to monitor and will notify you if we must limit your guests.


May 5, 2020

Dear Graduates and Presumptive Graduates,

This is just a short note… First, congratulations on successfully completing the required work to receive your degree. Second, to tell you that we are still waiting for clear guidelines (and hopefully significant breakthroughs in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic) that will allow us to know all our graduation options. I can tell you that we will have a ceremony one way or another, and my goal is to make it special so that you will be able to say, “it was worth the wait.”

As you can imagine, the pandemic requires us to cover many new issues including things such revised speaker schedules, having the right equipment and materials available on site, etc. I have looked at (and will continue to look at) several current alternatives. I also welcome any thoughts you might like to share with me regarding your own preferences or creative ideas. In the meantime, I promise to contact you as quickly as all our viable options have been identified and settle on the best way to get the graduation ceremony back on your calendar.

One final detail… Some of you are needing documentation for job interviews. You will be receiving your diploma by mail and the official website will show you as a graduate on your official transcript. I hope this information helps clarify what we are doing.

Blessings,

Mac D. Heavener, Jr.


March 24, 2020

Trinity Baptist College Family,

We have been encouraged and amazed to see our Trinity family spring into action to make online learning possible, and not just possible, but with the commitment to maintain highest quality education possible. This kind of quick and thoughtful reaction reflects the type of learning environment Trinity strives to achieve every day in the classroom and which will certainly continue in your home. Some of the most valuable part of your education will be learning how to respond to change and to deal with adversity. This can be a defining moment for you as you overcome the challenges and finish the semester strong.

We also know that these last few days have brought uncertainty. Some of you might be facing changes that you just weren’t prepared for. We want you to know that you are a part of the Trinity family and we want to minister to you and meet your needs in any way we can.

We are all in these unprecedented and uncharted times together. The speed of which things have changed and the uncertainty that we all face personally and as a community can be frightful. We are reminded that “God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, love, and of a sound mind.”

Please know that we are facing the same uncertainty with a deep commitment to care for our community, our students and their families, along with our administrators, faculty, and support staff. Here is what we would suggest as a course of action for each of us.


• Stay Enrolled and finish the semester with us – this is the least disruption to you and we want to help maximize your learning by keeping things as familiar as possible. You will never have a better opportunity to finish a semester with all your grades intact. We do not believe that anyone should feel the need to withdraw for any reason and we would like to work with you to help you stay in college at Trinity.


• Do your best to stay current on your college bill – If you have not had disruption to your income, then it would help us if you stayed current. If you have had disruption, we simply ask that you do the best that you can. While you will still receive your FACTS notifications, just notify the business office at (cballard@tbc.org) or call (904-596-2451) regarding your specific situation if you have had income disruption. The better we understand your circumstances, the more effective we can be in assisting you and praying for your family. We have instructed FACTS to waive all late fees as of March 15th and will continue with that policy until the crisis is over. Remember, we have teachers and staff that must be paid as well.


• Plan on re-enrolling for next year – While we may be disrupted for several weeks, we also know that this will pass and we need to be forward in our thinking. Summer online enrollment is available now on Populi.com. Fall registration schedules will be available in a few weeks. Advisors will be reaching out to you but please feel free to contact your advisor with questions about summer and/or fall classes.


• We know Seniors are wondering about graduation. We understand the disappointment you have. While we have had to post-pone it for now, we will be looking at options to give you an opportunity to return to campus to receive your diploma. We’ll keep you informed. Your degree will be noted officially on your transcript as soon as you complete your courses. You can request a transcript for use with job applications showing your degree has been officially conferred.


• Join together with us to ask for God’s protection and a quick resolution to this health crisis – As a Christian college, committed to a Christian world-view, we think that this is a teaching moment for all of us. We should be humble, repentant, and bold to come before God and ask for His help. We believe that the sin, sickness, and suffering in this world can only be dealt with through the redemptive work of Jesus. We are invited to draw near and to come boldly to ask for help in time of need. The Bible, along with history, teaches us that God does remarkable and supernatural work to ward off evil and defeat the devil.


• Be a good neighbor to those around you – if we are going to take Jesus’ commands seriously, then we should be thinking not just of ourselves, but also about others. If you will have a view that you can impact and help those around you by your compassion and generosity, then we will truly see great things in this time of trial.

We wish we knew the end date to this, but we are just going to walk this journey together. There is one thing I can promise; Trinity Baptist College will bounce back better than ever. We can’t wait to welcome your students back onto our campus I’m looking to the future at TBC and I know it is bright, especially with you as a part of it.

To summarize, we are asking everyone to do the best that they can, and you can be assured that is what we are going to be doing. We are going to get through this together and if we all do the best that we can, we will get through it better personally, and as a school family.

If you are not connected to a church home, we would invite you to connect with Trinity at tbc.org and we encourage you to contact us at news@tbc.org if you have questions or concerns.
Sincerely,

Tom Messer
Senior Pastor
Trinity Baptist Church
TBC Chancellor

Mac Heavener
President
Trinity Baptist College


March 18, 2020

As you may be aware, Florida Governor DeSantis and the Florida Department of Education have issued guidance that all colleges and universities in Florida move to online instruction for the remainder of the semester.  We will comply with their directive.  Faculty are already busy preparing your courses for online delivery starting Monday, March 23. 

Unfortunately,  this will also mean the cancellation of graduation activities including the commencement ceremony.  We know this is a disappointment to the graduating class and we will continue to evaluate the situation and look for alternatives.

Students living in the residence halls will receive information directly from Student Life regarding arrangements to remove items.  Please do not come to campus until you receive instruction.  The campus is closed to all except essential personnel.

Faculty, administration and staff will continue to be available via email and phone to assist you.  We will continue with activities such as summer and fall registration, admissions, etc.  Advisors will be in contact with you regarding upcoming class schedules.

You should receive emails from each instructor in each course by this weekend giving you direction for starting online delivery Monday.  If you do not hear from your instructor, please email me directly.

Information regarding your financial account will be sent separately as we are working through those details.

I’m sure you will have questions going forward.  Please feel free to email me, Dr. Stanley (jstanley@tbc.org), President Mac Heavener (macheavener@tbc.org), Student Life (studentlifeoffice@tbc.org), Academic Office (academicoffice@tbc.org), Financial Aid (financialaid@tbc.org) or the athletic office (jjones@tbc.org

Know that we are here to help you be successful and will work to assist you in any way possible. It will be critical that you check your email daily as we will communicate class and college information as necessary via that channel.

 

 

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