Center for Student Involvement - University of Houston
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The Latest Updates on COVID-19

The Center for Student Involvement staff will be returning to the office on Monday, August 17th. We will still be available to assist you through phone and/or email. Please see below for more information.

General Questions
832.842.6245
csi@uh.edu

Campus Traditions and Programs
Michael Crook
macrook@uh.edu

Leadership & Civic Engagement
Katy Kaesebier
kkaesebier@uh.edu

Registered Student Organizations
Ja’Nelle King
jsking8@uh.edu

We are also posting updates and engagements on social media @uhcsi and on our website.

For the most up to date information, visit UH’s response to COVID-19.

  • Check out our monthly newsletter to stay up-to-date on engagement opportunities, events, and related news!

We're still here for you!

The Center for Student Involvement is still committed to offering you opportunities to connect, discover, and engage during this time. Click below to access content specific to each area we offer!

Leadership
Civic Engagement
Programming
Registered Student Organizations

Need to chat with someone? We will be in our Zoom Office from 1-3pm, Monday through Thursday. Click the icon to join!

CSI Zoom Office

Event Planning for Student Organizations - Fall 2020

The Center for Student Involvement wants to help you and your student organization plan successful meetings and events this Fall by keeping you informed of UH’s current guidelines and safety measures. As we receive guidelines related to campus meetings and events, we will keep you updated.

The University of Houston is committed to ensuring the safety of all and has created guidelines and safety protocols which are listed on the UH COVID-19 Webpage. Face coverings must be worn by all students and employees while on campus. For more details on when and where masks are required, visit the UH Return to Campus – Face Coverings website.

  • Stay home if you experience any signs of illness or feel sick.
  • Take care to follow health and safety guidelines in your living spaces and during social interactions.
  • Be sure to complete your symptom checker task every morning.

To further promote a safe environment on campus, all meetings and events during the Fall 2020 semester will have the following guidelines and restrictions:

  • We encourage meetings and events to be held virtually, if possible.
  • If an in-person meeting or event must take place, outdoor venues are encouraged.
  • All meetings and events will be approved based on university guidance that is in place at the time the event form is submitted and is subject to change or be canceled at any time based upon changes in guidance.
  • Indoor meetings and events will be limited to a pre-determined capacity of the room or meeting location.
  • All in-person attendees will be required to follow CDC guidelines for physical distancing and personal hygiene.
  • Face coverings are required.
  • Registered Student Organizations will obtain event registration approval for qualifying events through the existing Get Involved event approval process.
  • If groups are unable to find appropriate space, the meeting or event will need to be held in a virtual or hybrid environment.
  • Contingency plans should be developed.

The Center for Student Involvement encourages all Registered Student Organizations to register their virtual meeting and events in Get Involved. This is in an effort to ensure UH students can discover meetings, events and activities that are open to them.

The Center for Student Involvement can help you set up:

  • Virtual member and executive board meetings (can be managed via Microsoft Teams )
  • Officer elections via Get Involved
  • Events in a virtual environment

We are also available via online meetings or phone calls for support and assistance with your student organization.

As you consider hosting virtual meetings and events, please be sure to take the following steps:

  • Place meeting and events in Get Involved for approval as you normally would do for on-campus events
  • Under Event Details, when asked “Show To,” please select the most appropriate for your organization
    • If this is a meeting or an event that is open UH students, then select “students and staff at University of Houston.”
    • If this is a closed meeting or event that is only open to the organization, then select “organization members.”
    • Public and Invited Users are other options you could choose if appropriate
  • When selecting, “Who can attend this event,” mark the box that says “open to UH community” as many students are looking for ways to engage with other students during this time
  • Add the virtual location (the Zoom link or other link) to this event – this is a new feature that Get Involved offers

We encourage you to continue to meet during your normal day/time for meetings by using an online video conferencing system such as Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams (AKA Teams) is a workspace for real-time collaboration and communication, meetings, file and app sharing, and more.  Students, faculty, and staff can create virtual meetings that can be joined by anyone in the world with a simple link.

  • There is a screen-sharing feature that would allow a PowerPoint or documents to be displayed and discussed as well as a recording option if content would like to be recorded in advance and distributed to organization members.
  • Teams may be helpful for: full organization meetings, executive board meetings, committee meetings, interviews, one on one conversations, and more.

Microsoft Teams Resources:

Your organization's Get Involved page has the capability to facilitate many things online that organizations may have initially scheduled for in-person meetings during the next few weeks into the remainder of the semester. The organization tools available for your organizations may be very helpful for this. Log on to the CSI On Demand page and get all the information on:

  • Creating a Virtual Election
  • Office Change Requests
  • Event Registrations
  • Get Involved Overview of all Features

Email csi@uh.edu if you have any questions.

Virtual Activities and Programming Ideas

Looking for something to do from the comfort of your home? We’ve got a few ideas to keep you entertained!

You can still put some good out into the world from their couches. Multilingual students can serve as webpage translators, empathetic listeners can volunteer with 7 Cups, and sighted students can download Be My Eyes to lend a hand — er, eye — to blind and visually-impaired.

You can find more opportunities below.

Plus, the local non-profit groups that your campus usually partners with and the philanthropies that student orgs support may also appreciate virtual help. Reach out to see how you can continue supporting their work.

  • Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems! Join Kennedy Center Education Artist-in-Residence at Home for a live daily doodle lesson at 12:00pm CST. Videos will be available after live on the Kennedy Center YouTube channel.
  • Join the McHarper Manor weekdays on Facebook for a daily art project tutorial. Art projects will range from watercolor paintings to chalk art to canvas painting and will take place live at 12:00pm CST. Videos will be available after the live class on the McHarper Manor Facebook page.
  • Missing group fitness classes or going to the gym? Check out the Planet Fitness Facebook page for live-streamed daily workouts several times a day or Fitness Blender for free at-home workouts. Is Yoga more your thing? Check out Yoga with Adriene to keep up your practice from the comfort of your living room.

Experience the best museums from NYC to France to Seoul in the comfort of your own home. Check out these sites to go on virtual tours of different museums and specific exhibits.

Lions, tigers and bears, oh my! Just want a cute and cuddly distraction? Check out several different animal live cam options from watching silly sea otters and curious elephants or just mellow out to the hypnotic drifting jellyfish.

  • Have everyone contribute to a collaborative playlist. You could even have a Playlist of a Day, inviting everyone to listen to a set of songs together.
  • Dedicate some time each day or week to virtual dance parties. In the morning, get energized by tweeting out a video of a catchy pop tune. Or in the afternoon, stay awake with a quick digital dance-off to the best boy bands, show tunes, or the fight song.
  • Pick a film or TV show that can be streamed for free from Vudu or Tubi.
  • Share your favorite YouTube video. By setting a time limit of five minutes or less per video, you can encourage folx to savor a quick laugh, a bit of inspiration, or some animal cuteness — without much of a commitment.
  • Whose line is it anyway? Yours! Many improv games can be slightly adapted to work well virtually, including One Word Story, Convergence, and 5 Things.
  • Word puzzles are a great mix of rewarding and challenging. You can find numerous premade ones online, or better yet, create your own word search or crossword puzzle.
  • Use a tool like Kahoot or Quizziz to challenge your friends to a fun round (or two or 50) of trivia. You could get creative with themes that are either serious (such as national news, politics, and institutional history) or wacky (like types of pasta, famous Instagram cats, and memes.)
  • Get board, not bored. Students can join multiplayer board games through Pogo, Tabletopia, Bingo or Poki. Score!
  • Use an online karaoke catalog like Karafun, SingSnag, or Smule for an off-the-charts competition. Or, you can simply search for karaoke versions of popular songs on YouTube.

UH Student Leaders

As we navigate this uncharted territory, we want to be sure we are providing as much clarification for you as possible as it relates to your student organization and members. Please see below for items that particularly effect student organizations.

  • Effective Wednesday, March 11, 2020, UH classes, including lectures, seminars, discussions or presentations, were canceled through March 21st and as of March 23rd UH will suspend face-to-face instruction, lectures, discussion sessions, seminars and other similar classroom settings, and move to remote instruction until further notice. We believe it is important that we consider the same for student organization meetings and management. As a result, all student organizations should refrain from meeting in person when possible and should not make any meetings mandatory for any members. If you have to have essential meetings for organizational business purposes, virtual meetings are preferred. The University offers Microsoft Teams through Office 365 within your AccessUH. This is a free option for UH students to meet virtually and conduct their organizational business. In terms of organization business such as elections and voting, our engagement platform, Get Involved, allows student organizations to conduct elections virtually or create forms for surveys or to compile information.
  • While completing classes remotely, students may choose to return to their permanent place of residence or return to campus where appropriate social distancing and enhanced preventative public health and hygiene measures will be actively encouraged. Students should make the choice that is best for their own personal situation.

The University of Houston has a lot of really great resources for student organizations to continue with organization business, even though we are relying heavily on social distancing at this time. Below are a few options for organizations to utilize during this time.

Get Involved is our number one resource for student groups to continue their business! With options like document sharing, elections, forms, news, etc. students can continue to stay in touch and conduct important and critical functions for their organizations. Get Involved can be found as an icon in your AccessUH.

Microsoft Teams is another option for organizations to stay connected. Using Teams, groups have the option to video chat, share files, schedule meetings, and keep track of the progress of projects and activities. To set up a Microsoft Team, a student can select Office 365 from their AccessUH, log in and select Teams from the menu of options.

Once the student opens Teams, they can click Create a Team at the top right, and they will select Other for Clubs.

Students can then engage in a multitude of ways. We encourage you to add your members and click around to see the different features!

If you have questions or would like more information on how you can use these tools let us know.

As we are fast approaching election season for student organizations, we felt we should share the process for hosting elections online. This method can relieve some of the pressure of attempting to hold elections in a meeting where some may be unable to attend, especially in this time of social distancing. The Elections feature can also be used for small voting opportunities like picking t-shirt designs or voting on the best meeting date or time.

Through the Elections feature you are able to add as many ballots as needed, and also add items such as photos, platform information, or other pertinent voting information. You are also able to display an alert on your organization’s homepage which will provide a direct link to vote and will be removed as soon as the elections are over. When you set up your elections you are provided with a link that you can send via email if that works better for your group.

When viewing results, you can view based on the total number of votes cast or the total number of voters. Voting is completely anonymous and cannot be tied back to a particular student. You can Export the votes into Excel or you can view the snapshot of the results in Get Involved.

For more information on how to conduct an election through Get Involved, click here!

  • The University of Houston is currently refraining from all international travel and domestic business travel. UH is restricting all international travel and business-related travel that requires university funds or approval at least until the end of April.
  • If you have traveled internationally you will need to self-quarantine for 14 days. This applies to all travel, personal or professional, since February 25, 2020.
  • Register yourself on the university’s COVID-19 website if you have taken or will take any international travel – professional or personal—since January 31, 2020.
  • We strongly urge extreme caution and judgment for your personal domestic travel, with particular attention to known outbreak areas
  • Effective immediately, all events scheduled to occur between now and the end of April, must be rescheduled, canceled or virtualized. This includes student organization meetings, events, volunteer projects, workshops, and retreats.
  • Evaluation of meeting, event, or retreat necessity should be discussed with your organization advisor or a CSI staff member.
  • If you have questions or concerns regarding your event please contact your student organization advisor and additional questions should be directed to the specific area for your group.
Many community agencies that host groups of volunteers or educational opportunities have already canceled the opportunity until further notice. If an organization has not made that decision, you must abide by the university policy that all events with more than ten (10) attendees scheduled between now and the end of April must be rescheduled, canceled, or virtualized.
  • If your organization attempts to move forward with a prohibited event or travel you will forfeit use of any university funding to cover event or travel expenses.
  • If your organization was allocated university funds and has expenses for items that are unable to be returned or be reimbursed please contact the allocating body (i.e. Activities Funding Board or Council for Cultural Activities) for more information on how to move forward.

As always, please practice social distancing to help prevent the spread. Keep a distance of at least six feet between yourself and another person; practice proper handwashing; avoid touching your face; cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, and stay home if feeling sick. Please reference the CDC website for additional prevention guidelines.

For up to date information and resources visit www.uh.edu/covid-19/. Please continue to check daily for email updates regarding this very fluid situation. If you have a question related to the university and COVID-19, please email coronavirus@uh.edu.

Please feel free to contact us at csi@uh.edu with any questions or concerns you may have regarding the Center for Student Involvement. We understand this is a trying time for everyone, and we want you to know that we are here to support you as we navigate this difficult and ever-changing situation.

The Center for Student Involvement

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