COVID-19 FAQ - For Students

Common questions from Students with answers collected by release date. All answers are current.

March 28, 2020

Retrieving Personal Belongings

When/How will I pick up my personal items left behind at the Academy?

At this time, due to the Stay at Home Order issued by Governor Roy Cooper (effective until April 29, 2020), we are unable to provide a date for students to retrieve their personal items from the Academy building. We are carefully monitoring and following guidance issued by local, state, and federal health officials and other authorities to determine when it will be safest for students to return to campus and retrieve belongings. 

Students who are able to pick-up items in person will have times scheduled to come to campus sometime after April 29. Dean Rogers will circulate an email sign-up sheet to students and families when the timeline for students to be able to retrieve their personal belongings has been determined. Move-out times will be staggered on different days and times in order to limit contact and to ensure appropriate social distancing in response to COVID-19. 

If it is vital that you access something from campus before the move-out process begins (e.g., medicine), please reach out to Dean Rogers and she will coordinate with you on the options for receiving your essential items. 

What if I am unable to return to campus to retrieve my belongings?

Returning students who are not able to return to campus will have their personal items moved into their 2020-2021 dorm room. 

For seniors or other students not returning to the Academy next academic year, personal items will be shipped to their college or U.S. forwarding address with assistance from a moving company engaged by Salem to assist with this service. 

Salem bears no responsibility for personal items lost or damaged during this process. Students and families will be responsible for payment of the applicable moving and/or shipping fees. 

When will room selection happen?

Room selection will take place in May online; there will be virtual meetings and tours of student rooms.

End of Year Events

What will Prom look like?

Although we will not host Prom in Bryant Hall as planned, there will be a virtual dance party organized by the Class of 2021 that will help us all celebrate spring and dance the night away. Details will be worked out and shared with the school community in the coming weeks.

What will graduation weekend activities look like?

Salem Academy is abiding by the Stay at Home and other Executive Orders issued by Governor Roy Cooper, which suspend campus events through May 15; at this time, we are planning for our scheduled graduation celebration. However, we will have students who are unable to participate and our senior class officers will be involved in making sure that our digital celebration is meaningful for all of our Salem community throughout the world.

Grading for College Classes

Will grading for College classes be handled differently this semester due to the transition to remote learning?

Yes. All College classes will be Pass/No Credit, unless a student asks for one or more classes to remain graded. Students may request that their classes remain graded through a Google form; the link to the form will be posted on the Salem website by April 1. Students who have questions or need assistance accessing the link should email the Salem College Registrars at for additional support. The deadline for submitting requests for graded classes will be April 20.

Exams for College Classes

How will students take spring semester College exams?

College exams will be virtual this year. Faculty who choose to give final tests or exams will be encouraged to make them due during the scheduled exam period, May 15-19.

Internet Access

A lot of people are using free Public Wifi. Can I use that to do my school work?

Public WiFi is any WiFi network you can connect to that is made available to the general public and/or is unsecured by password access. It is important to remember that open WiFi or Public WiFi is insecure, but there are steps that you can take to protect yourself when using it for school work. Please be advised, Salem I.T. prohibits faculty/staff use of Public WiFi when working with any Personally Identifiable Information (PII).

When using Public WiFi, remember to follow these guidelines to keep your computer and stored information safe:

  • When using a hotspot, log in or send personal information only to websites that you know are fully encrypted. Please see the link below for more details on encryption;
  • Do not use the same password on different websites;
  • Pay attention to warnings made by web browsers that alert you to visiting fraudulent websites or downloading malicious programs;
  • Use a virtual private network (VPN). A VPN is a method of protecting your web traffic in transit between you and another, trusted server. It helps to protect your anonymity and your data from eavesdropping. If you use a VPN, make sure it is a VPN from a provider that you trust;
  • Make sure the WiFi network you are using is configured to use WPA2 as it is the strongest wireless encryption available on Public WiFi. When you are given the chance to connect, your device should tell you what type of encryption is in use;
  • Install a browser add-ons or plug-ins that forces HTTPS on all sites that have it available and that block ads. The EFF provides excellent add-ons for privacy, and our recommendation for ad blocking is uBlock Origin from Raymond Hill. Both Raymond Hill's and the EFF's addons are available to be added to most browsers).

For questions and assistance, please contact the Salem IT Help Desk at For more information on these guidelines and further tips, please visit the Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Information Tips for Using Public WiFi.

Video Conferencing

I have problems getting video/audio not to lag/distort during video calls. What can I do to improve this?

As much as possible, use headphones with a built-in microphone when on video or audio calls online. It is best practice to always be on a wired network connection rather than WiFi when viewing videos and listening to audio on-line. The same is true for video conferencing using [Zoom/Hangouts Meet/insert your favorite video conferencing app here]. When you cannot get a wired connection with an ethernet cable, move closer to your WiFi router/hotspot (NOT TOO CLOSE! Remember, social distancing - it works for more than just COVID-19!). You can also make sure that other WiFi devices are turned off (especially WiFi printers), your microwave oven is not running, your cordless phone is not close by, and other sources of WiFi interference are turned off. For more information on improving your WiFi experience - and therefore your video conferencing experience, visit I.T.’s MySalem page, or read Tips for a Better WiFi Experience

*Please understand that all plans and dates in this message are subject to change as the situation evolves in response to the pandemic.


  1. Free Internet Access in North Carolina

Free Internet Access in North Carolina

Are there any available free or low cost internet access options in North Carolina?

Yes. provides a list of North Carolina internet providers that are offering free internet service for 60 days, with some variance in price and availability period by provider, to those who qualify. Based on your address, the list identifies providers in your area and contact information for your use. Some of the offerings (AT&T for instance) are not just responsive to COVID-19 and may provide more long-term, low-cost offerings for households.

Students who need proof of enrollment may email For questions about internet access, please contact Salem IT at with any questions.

March 18, 2020
Salem Academy Counseling Services

  1. Communicating with Counseling Services Remotely
  2. How to Set Up an Appointment with Ms. Mary Margaret Johnson, Academy Counselor
  3. Distance Counseling Options
  4. Self-Harm Prevention and Safety Plan
  5. Self-Care Tips
  6. Additional Resources

1. How can I communicate with Ms. Johnson while away from campus due to COVID-19?

You can correspond with Ms. Johnson by emailing her at As stated in the Salem Academy Remote Learning Information for Students document, Ms. Johnson will be offering remote Office Hours after your school day, from 2:30-4:30 p.m. Office Hours will be held Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday afternoons. Counseling appointments will take place via Zoom. Please refer to the Remote Learning Information for Students document to access Zoom. Due to limited counseling hours, appointment slots will be 30 minutes long to allow more students access to counseling.

2. How can I set up a remote appointment with Ms. Johnson?

You can set up a 30 minute appointment on Zoom by e-mailing Ms. Johnson. Please email her within 24 hours prior to the next school day so as to guarantee your appointment.

3. What are my options for distance counseling?

For those of you who already see a counselor at home, we strongly encourage you to continue your counseling services as much as possible. Your counselor likely offers tele-therapy, and it is worth requesting this option during this time. For those of you who see a counselor in Winston-Salem, but live out of town, please be in communication with your counselor to coordinate remote services. If you do not currently have a counselor, please talk to your parents or guardians to find a counselor in your area. Ms. Johnson is happy to make referrals and recommendations as well.

4. If I need immediate help, what should I do?

You need to immediately call the 24-hour Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK, or 1-800-273-8255. For those of you who have already created a Safety Plan with Ms. Johnson, this is the perfect time to use it. You can download a copy of the Safety Plan here for reference. You can also use any of the following phone and texting numbers:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255

Crisis Textline: Text “HELLO” to 741741

Trevor Project Lifeline for LGBT Youth: 866-488-7386

Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender National Help Center: 1-800-246-PRIDE

National Teen Dating Violence Hotline: 1-866-331-9474 or text “loveis” to 22522

National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-HOPE

National Eating Disorders Helpline: 1-800-931-2237

5. How can I take care of myself during this time?

As you have all learned in Pathways, Self-Care is critical to your wellbeing. It will be tempting to go on “auto-pilot” during this time and neglect caring for yourself. Try some of these simple self-care tips, get creative, and ask friends for ideas, too!


  • Establish a routine (wake up and go to bed at roughly the same time each day)
  • Exercise a minimum of 30 minutes per day- practice yoga, find an indoor exercise routine, take a walk (if possible)
  • Limit sugar intake, drink water, establish healthy and regular eating habits
  • Prioritize sleep


  • Limit exposure to news and social media
  • Listen to music that is uplifting to you
  • Engage in old hobbies or start new ones
  • Participate in mindfulness and meditation
  • Make a list of what you can and cannot control
  • Practice “HALT” from Pathways: Hungry Angry Lonely Tired
  • Participate in distance counseling with Ms. Johnson or other counselor


  • Create a group Spotify playlist
  • Do exercise challenges on Apps with your friends
  • Share books/movies/shows to watch
  • Zoom, FaceTime, etc. with friends and family
  • Gather with those in your household for games and movies


  • Start the morning with quiet time/mindfulness/meditation before school
  • Journaling exercises—What are you thankful for during this time?
  • Attend online spiritual gatherings (worship services, spiritual community)

6. What are other resources I can use during this time?

This is a great opportunity to use technology as a means for good! Check out the following Apps to practice mindfulness, meditation, breathing exercises and more:

  • Headspace
  • Calm
  • Breathe
  • Breathing App
  • MoodKit
  • Stop, Breathe and Think

March 13, 2020

  1. Returning to Campus for Belongings
  2. Use of Campus Facilities During Break and Remote Learning
  3. Student Workers
  4. Financial Aid for Work Study
  5. Notifying Salem of COVID-19 Symptoms
  6. Exposure Notice
  7. Academy Graduation and College Commencement
  8. Room and Board

Can residential students (not including those remaining on campus due to approved extenuating circumstances) return to campus during the extended Spring Break and remote learning period for purposes of retrieving items left in residence hall rooms?

Should you have an urgent need to retrieve belongings from your residence hall room, please contact Dean Lauren Rogers or Ms. Gloria Frost (for Academy students) and Residence Life (for College students by calling 336-575-3887) to discuss options. Students should not return to campus unless permitted to do so by an Academy or College official.

Can students return to campus during the extended Spring Break and remote learning period to use labs, classrooms, or other campus facilities?

No, with the exception of the following. At this time, students will be permitted to continue using Gramley Library for studying and internet access. Gramley Library will transition to card access only effective March 16, 2020 and will not be open to the general public. Should it become necessary to further limit access to Gramley Library, students will be notified. With the exception of the Refectory, which will only be accessible to residential students who are allowed to remain on campus, no other College facilities will be open for use by students during the extended Spring Break and remote learning period. Dean Rogers will provide direction to Academy students residing on campus regarding permitted use of the Academy building.

Can student workers continue to work during the extended Spring Break and remote learning period?

No, per the message issued by President Sandra Doran and Head of School Carol Killebrew on March 12, 2020, the campus will remain open for faculty and staff, excluding student workers.

Will financial aid compensate work study students during the remote learning period?

Salem College is currently exploring ways to support our work study students during this unprecedented time. As we receive more information and have updates in regards to work study, we will pass them along.

If I feel like I am exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough, shortness of breath), should I notify Salem Academy and College?

Yes, if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, please follow this process and immediately notify the designated Salem officials:

  • Academy Students: Notify Dean Lauren Rogers (336-721-2776) or Ms. Gloria Frost (336-721-2765).

  • College Students: Notify the Residence Life On-Call Member by calling 336-575-3887.

Following notification, the designated Salem official will connect you with a healthcare provider for assessment and determination of next steps.

If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and believe that you need an ambulance, call Public Safety at 336-917-5555 and explain your situation.

Will I be notified if Salem learns that I have been exposed to someone with COVID-19?

Salem will be directed by local health officials regarding who must be notified in the event of known COVID-19 exposure. For students, local health officials and/or Salem Residence Life or Administration (as directed by local health officials) will make such notifications without revealing the identity of infected person.

Will Academy graduation or College commencement be rescheduled?

We are currently assessing the status of end-of-year celebrations and will provide the campus community with a substantive update soon.

Will I receive a refund for room and board during the extended Spring Break and remote learning period?

We are analyzing this question and will provide updates as soon as answers are determined.