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COVID-19 Information for National Fire Academy Students

Explore the information below to learn about measures the National Emergency Training Center (NETC) is taking to protect you from COVID-19 while on campus and other related policy changes in effect during the pandemic.

The health, wellness and safety of our students, instructors and staff is paramount. NETC staff is continuously monitoring and evaluating the national COVID-19 situation and the current guidance in Maryland and Pennsylvania.

Based on COVID-19 conditions, training at the NETC campus will be evaluated weekly. Training may be cancelled as late as the Thursday prior to your scheduled arrival on campus.

If you are ill within 14 days prior to training, we ask that you do not attend training. We want you to closely monitor your health and avoid situations or areas that are high risk for COVID-19 or other fever-related illnesses 14 days prior to arriving.

If you are fully vaccinated

UPDATED You need to wear a mask indoors on campus.

You will not need an on-campus COVID-19 test if you are asymptomatic and are fully vaccinated.

What does fully vaccinated mean?
You are considered fully vaccinated if it has been 2 weeks or more since you received the second Pfizer or Moderna dose or the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Acceptable proof of vaccination

  • Photo, copy or original of a government-issued COVID-19 vaccination card.
  • Signed statement on official letterhead from a health care provider confirming full vaccination status and date(s).
  • Official medical record from a health care provider containing vaccination status and date(s).
  • Any other official vaccination record issued by a government agency documenting vaccination status and date(s).

If you are not fully vaccinated

All non-vaccinated students and instructors are encouraged to secure a negative COVID-19 test result within 72 hours prior to arrival on the NETC campus.

Non-vaccinated students and instructors must take an on-campus COVID-19 test on arrival and every 7 days after that. Masks and social distancing are mandatory.

Non-vaccinated persons are required to wear masks in all common areas including entrances, elevators, restrooms, common areas and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) transportation.

Health screening procedures

We will email information about testing to students and instructors prior to arrival.

Daily health screenings are required for all students and instructors following Department of Homeland Security (DHS)/FEMA health screening procedures. COVID-19 testing for non-vaccinated persons will occur every 7 days.

Students and instructors arriving via bus and or personal/department vehicle will be directed to proceed directly to Building B for health screening and testing prior to entrance to Building C West (Student Services) for room assignments.

Students will enter Building B via the main door on the east side of the building and exit through the northwest door adjacent to the patio area.

Building B flow for covid-19 testing

Building B location points

Daily check-in desk
Pool tables
Paperwork table
Travel direction
COVID-19 test lab
Stanchion barrier
Test result waiting area
floor sticker indicating where people should stand for social distance

Example of sticker located on the floor throughout the direction of travel. These are placed 6 feet apart to reinforce social distancing.

Where to park for screening

Campus employees and commuting students should use the Building A parking lot. Resident students and instructors are not authorized to park in this area. Handicapped parking is located between Buildings B and C.

Students and instructors will be asked to respond to 3 questions:

  1. Do you feel ill or have you taken any medication today for the purpose of reducing a fever?
  2. In the last 14 days, were you or anyone in your household waiting on test results for COVID-19 due to exposrue or because of COVID-19 symptoms?
  3. In the last 14 days, did you or a household member test positive for COVID-19 and are you currently under care and treatment for COVID-19?
Student/instructor answers “no” to all the questions,Facility access will be granted.
Student arrives via public or government-provided transportation and answers “yes” to any of the questions,Student will be isolated to a dorm room in Building F and advised to remain in the room until a medical assessment can be completed.

Health screening wristbands

Student and instructors will receive a new health screening wristband every day. To obtain a wristband, you are required to show proof for 1 of these 3 things in Building B prior to movement into any other building:

  • Fully vaccinated status.
  • Negative test result in the last 7 days.
  • Testing exemption following a COVID-19 diagnosis and recovery.

Anyone observed without a wristband will be denied access to the cafeteria and classrooms. Classroom access will be controlled by the instructor. Access to the cafeteria will be controlled by staff at the cash register.

If you become ill

  • Any student or instructor who feels ill will be directed back to their dormitory room for medical attention. The campus nurse and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) will attend to sick students at dormitory room locations.
  • Campus EMTs and local first responders will continue to respond to emergency calls at any location on campus.
  • In accordance with current guidance, no persons exhibiting signs of COVID-19 will go to a medical facility prior to being assessed by medical authorities and tested on campus.
  • Building F dormitory is designated as the isolation building if quarantine is necessary for any student or instructor based on a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 case.

Steps we're taking to protect you

We have put in place various COVID-19 mitigation measures on the NETC campus. These mitigation measures are like what you are currently experiencing in your state or jurisdiction. We will implement priority behavior practices daily on the NETC campus as follows:

  1. Social distancing for non-vaccinated persons (specifically, staying 6 feet away from others when you must go into shared space).
  2. Frequently washing hands or the use alcohol-based hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available.
  3. Avoiding touching eyes, nose and mouth.
  4. Staying at home when sick, or in other words, not making the trip to NETC.
  5. Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Social distancing will always be practiced for non-vaccinated persons.

Housing will be in the form of single rooms; when possible, alternating rooms on each dormitory floor.

Dining is limited to 50 students at a time with scheduled mealtimes for all students.

The cafeteria will no longer offer buffet-style dining. Staff will serve all food and drink in the dining hall. Students will be issued meal cards with designated mealtimes upon check-in.

Dining hall hours

Ticket colorBreakfastLunchDinner
Light blue6 a.m.11 a.m.5 p.m.
Yellow6:30 a.m.11:30 a.m.5:30 p.m.
Tan7 a.m.Noon6 p.m.
Light green7:30 a.m.12:30 p.m.6:30 p.m.

Restrooms/break areas will be carefully monitored for capacity.

The course manager and/or instructors will establish break schedules. Break food will consist of bottled water/juice and cans of soda. Prepackaged food (i.e., bags of chips, cookies, crackers, healthy breakfast bars, etc.) will be provided as part of the meal ticket.

Recreational facilities to include the Building H pool, gym, workout room, locker rooms and Command Post Pub are now open with limited capacities.

Outdoor areas can be used for exercise. We will encourage outdoor areas to be used for training and dining (weather dependent).

Airport transportation will be provided as normal.

Masks are required on FEMA transportation if you are not vaccinated. Students must maintain social distancing when arriving/departing campus via FEMA transportation.

Cleaning and disinfecting according to specific COVID-19 Department of Homeland Security (DHS)/FEMA guidance will be followed for all campus areas.

Campus capacities for all common areas, classrooms, breakout rooms, restrooms and other locations will be marked. Please adhere to the designated capacities in all areas.