Student Information

Updated April 27, 2021 | Questions? Email

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ from Student Town Hall on Dec. 7, 2020

COVID-19 Vaccines

The federal level will distribute vaccinations to the states, and the states will make logistics determinations from there.

Missouri is currently in Phase 1a, which started Dec. 1, and includes the first round of vaccinations to be distributed to:

  • Forward-facing health care providers
  • LTC facilities’ elderly patients

KCU 3rd- and 4th-year students on clinical rotation are considered part of Missouri Phase 1a (forward-facing health care providers). Other states are also following the same phased plan, so 3rd- and 4th-year KCU students who are on clinical rotation outside of Missouri still qualify for the Phase 1a vaccinations as forward-facing health care providers who are caring for patients.

KCU is one of thousands of applicants to become vaccine providers for Phase 1b distribution. Members of our team are already training with the CDC toolkits. We hope that KCU will be providing vaccines in Phase 1b, and will provide more information as it comes in.


Unfortunately, the requirements for this have not changed. In order to take the COMLEX 3CE, you have to have graduated from an osteopathic medical school and you have to have completed COMLEX 1CE, 2CE and 2PE. Because of the pandemic, we’ve had changes in the accreditation standards to allow for the PE and potentially the CE to be taken after graduation, but in order to get into the third part of the exam, you have to still complete them. So that is being discussed.

In terms of advocacy, we advocate for validation of training. We will not advocate for dilution of testing that could put patients at risk.

While we are actively working with the NBOME, all of the deans are very cognizant of the importance of being able to validate your achievement in order to maintain the safety of the people we serve. As we hear about decisions, we will get them to you as quickly as we can.

Virtual and Augmented Reality Tools

Yes, it was featured on a Channel 41 KSHB news story in November, and, yes, it is why first year students needed different laptop specs.

The new technology was in the works to be introduced before the pandemic in a way that would allow 1st, 2nd and 3rd year students to use it. Once the pandemic started, we were unable to use the tools right away because they require groups of people to get together in the sharing of headsets and equipment.

We rolled the tools out to the students who are at the most critical stage in their education from an accreditation point of view, in other words being able to move onto graduation, and those who are in the clerkship years - so, the 3rd year students have been utilizing these tools in different ways. We’ve implemented a number of technologies, but most of them are so we can keep everybody on track.

As we come back into the spring semester we are planning to roll these tools out for 1st and 2nd years, primarily 2nd years. By July we will have more use on campus as long as we can get groups together and be in closer physical proximity. The tools being used  had to be modified to terms of their use for different groups and as we speak, the various faculty who will be champions for some of these tools are using them in building the materials that will be given to you once we can get together.

Anatomy Lab for Spring Semester

We look at more than just a COVID-19 positivity rate among our students. We look at baseline testing, surveillance testing, we also look at our surrounding communities, students, employees, as well as the authorities that make specific criteria of capacity use.

Next semester we plan on increasing on-campus activities while maintaining established safety protocols. For the COM specifically, our current draft of spring semester does include continuing to be physically using our clinical skills as well as osteopathic manipulative medicine lab in-person following protocols. We will be adding on simulated patients experiences and live anatomy lab sessions. All is subject to change depending on the status of the pandemic, but we expect to be in anatomy lab next semester.

Joplin Study Space

This answer provides information for both campuses. We were able to open campus for study space for 1st- and 2nd-year students during the fall semester on a limited basis. Students had specific times and places based on their assigned lab groups. We were trying to keep lab groups isolated to limit exposure. Since Thanksgiving, we’ve been able to provide study space without labs limitations because students are no longer required to come on campus for labs.

What made that possible is that our first and second-year students have been tested for COVID by KCU on two occasions, one in July and one more recently during surveillance testing. We’ve been very conservative on our approach, but we’ve been able to keep that positivity rate very low.

We’ve also been able to allow fourth-year students to do interviews on campus if they pass the daily screening app. Fourth-year students on campus for interviews are confined to a very specific area with strict cleaning protocols and who have passed the daily screening app. We have been very conservative so far and we will continue to be very conservative about campus.

Our plan is to provide broader access. Once we are able to reach lower rates in our community and we can test our 3rd- and 4th-year students for COVID, and we continue to examine options to open campus in a manner that protects our students, staff, faculty and communities. We are very optimistic that we will get there.

Commencement 2021

I want all students in the class of 2021 to know we are doing everything possible to hold in-person Commencement ceremonies. One ceremony will be in KC, and one in Joplin. For Joplin, MSSU has a field house that will hold our Joplin Commencement and allow guests to come. We don’t have an exact answer yet as to the number of guests you may bring to your ceremony, but save the dates of the weekend of May 8 & 9, 2021 as Commencement weekend. More information to follow.

COVID-19 Testing

Surveillance testing is generally used to monitor for a community- or population-level occurrence, such as an infectious disease outbreak, or to characterize the occurrence once detected, such as looking at the incidence and prevalence of the occurrence. Surveillance testing is used to gain information at a population level, rather than an individual level, and results of surveillance testing can be analyzed in aggregate. Surveillance testing may sample a certain percentage of a specific population to monitor for increasing or decreasing prevalence and to determine the population effect from community interventions, such as physical distancing and wearing masks.

Pool testing combines samples from several people and conducts one laboratory test on the combined pool of samples to detect COVID-19. Pooling is used for scenarios such as returning groups of workers to a workplace, returning students to campus or increasing campus activities. If a pooled test result is negative, then all the samples can be presumed negative with the single test. If the pooled test result is positive, each of the samples in the pool will need to be tested individually to determine which samples are positive.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The objectives of this essential step in our “Reawakening” plan are to:

  • Successfully mitigate and monitor the spread of COVID-19 in a more cost-effective and streamlined way;
  • Address trends and prevalence of the spread of the disease;
  • Allow for early detection; and
  • Provide for timely decisions on intervention.

Random samples of students and employees will be selected and tested for COVID-19 based on their on-campus schedule. Those who are randomly selected will be notified by email with the date and time of testing along with further details. If selected, you are required to participate unless otherwise exempted.

Any member of the campus community who fits the following criteria will be exempt from this randomized testing:

  • Develops symptoms of COVID-19 or becomes aware that they have been in close contact with someone with COVID-19. These individuals should engage with Score 1 and follow the protocol guidance provided.
  • Is now asymptomatic but has tested positive for COVID-19 from previous testing efforts during the last 90 days.

Please call Score 1 for Health, 1-877-425-0251, to report your symptoms and receive instructions.

COVID-19 Activity Risk Guidelines and General Questions

  • Despite the last ‘required on-campus’ activity taking place on Nov. 9th/11th, KCU is able to utilize any time up through Nov. 24 to schedule required on-campus activities in the event that items need to be rescheduled or switched around.
  • Students are strongly encouraged to stay in the KC or Joplin areas (or at least within the 4 state area for the sake of not needing to quarantine) until the 24th of November. From Nov. 25th to the start of spring semester, travel outside of the 4-state area is permitted; a two-week quarantine will be expected of students upon their arrival back to KC.

KCU will be providing flu shots. These will be administered on two TBD dates within the month of October. Watch your email for additional details in the coming weeks.

If one attends in-person worship, you must maintain CDC recommended safety precautions for gatherings and events – 6’ distancing, wearing masks, no hugging or hand shaking. If your place of worship does not provide the ability to take these precautions, it would be reasonable for one to assume that it is not as safe as it should be with respect to public health during the pandemic. In order to protect yourself and the KCU campus community, the University suggests you consider worshiping virtually at least through the remainder of this semester.

KCU is voluntarily extending certain reasonable accommodations beyond those which are required by ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

KCU is doing so on a case-by-case basis and provided that the COVID-19 pandemic remains a risk to the campus communities. If you have a need for accommodations, please fill out the COVID-19 Accommodations Request Form.

KCU is voluntarily extending certain reasonable accommodations beyond those which are required by ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

KCU is doing so on a case-by-case basis and provided that the COVID-19 pandemic remains a risk to the campus communities. If you have a need for accommodations, please fill out the COVID-19 Accommodations Request Form.

If one can attend in-person worship and maintain safety precautions – 6’ distancing, wearing masks, no hugging or hand shaking – then there is no problem with answering “no” to this health screen question. If your place of worship does not provide the ability to take these precautions, it would be reasonable for one to assume that it is not as safe as it should be with respect to public health during the pandemic. In order to protect yourself and the KCU campus community, the University suggests you consider worshiping virtually at least through the remainder of this semester.

Campus Access and Events

Access to campus buildings is strictly limited until such time as it is determined that campus access is safe. The library and other study areas will be closed until that time, however library resources are always available through the Library website. In addition, there are virtual fitness classes available through the myKCU website.

Certain classrooms and other learning and meeting spaces are being reconfigured to ensure adequate physical distancing for faculty, staff and students. There will be certain areas of the campus that will be closed at various stages of Reawakening. During Stage 3, you can expect the following areas to be inaccessible until further notice:

Kansas City:

  • Cafeteria
  • Gym and lockers
  • Smith Hall
  • Library
  • SAC
  • Some SEP spaces
    (old OMM Lab, unused 3rd floor, 1st floor wing, and Micro Labs)
  • Kesselheim
  • Butterworth
  • Fourth floor of ADB study space outside the board room
  • Small meeting rooms


  • Cafeteria
  • Library
  • Student lounges
  • YMCA and student lockers
  • Refreshment bar
  • Study rooms
  • Small meeting rooms

KCU has suspended all in-person, face-to-face university activities until it is safe to re-engage in group fashion. Unfortunately, this includes community facing programs that are desperately needed. Our hope is to reconnect with these vital experiences as soon as it is safe and healthy for all participants and providers.

The significance and importance of these signature events remain a treasured tradition at KCU. We want to maintain the symbolic and sentimental nature of the events rather than conduct them virtually as many schools may do. Therefore we will delay the White Coating Ceremony and Pinning Ceremony until such time as we can safely gather in a single venue to celebrate this milestone in your journey toward becoming a physician.

Student Calendar


All students should be located in their campus communities. Dr. Hahn explains.



College of Osteopathic Medicine - Student Orientation Begins
Kansas City: Mon., July 13 – Thurs., July 23 |  Joplin: Mon., July 13 – Wed., July 22



COM-1 Students COVID-19 Testing



COM-2 Students COVID-19 Testing
PsyD Students COVID-19 Testing



COB-1 Students COVID-19 Testing



COB-2 Students COVID-19 Testing



Fall Semester Classes Begin
To view the Class Schedule when it is available, login through the SSO and check Canvas.

Protective Measures on Campus

Students must comply with at all times protective protocols that include, but are not limited to:

  • Not congregating in groups or forming lines with fewer than 6 feet between each person;
  • Washing your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; using the alcohol-based sanitizers available throughout the workplace;
  • Covering your sneezes and coughs with tissues, off to the side, or with crook of elbow, and disposing of all tissue properly after one use;
  • Wearing a face mask or face covering unless alone in a private office or work space that is enclosed;
  • Maintaining physical distancing (at least 6 feet between you and others), including on elevators, on stairs and in stairwells, in common areas, in file rooms, in break areas, etc.;
  • Staggering breaks, do not congregate in the break room or in lines for vending machines, and do not share cups, food or utensils;
  • All campus members are expected to participate in the simple steps of Advance Contact Tracing (“ACT”).

Face Masks or Coverings

Donning of face covering is required for all students when in common spaces or areas where physical distance cannot be achieved (i.e. certain cubical areas, etc.). We recognize that people generally find more comfort in choosing their own face coverings, thus, students and employees will use their own masks, whether cloth or surgical.

According to the CDC, there are five criteria for cloth face coverings which should

  • Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
  • Be secured with ties or ear loops
  • Include multiple layers of fabric
  • Allow for breathing without restriction
  • Be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape

Note that other types of improvised coverings, such as scarfs or bandanas, do not meet the above criteria. Also, face coverings are just one protective measure and should not be construed as a substitute for social distancing, personal hygiene and routine cleaning processes. 

Hand Sanitizer

Hand sanitizer will be made available throughout campus spaces.

Viral Testing

KCU will require that all students submit to COVID-19 saliva testing prior to returning to campus. Until further notice, these tests will be coordinated and directly observed by health professionals on the KCU campuses and will be offered for employees weekly beginning July 27. Earlier testing will be administered for faculty and staff who are required to be on campus on or before July 27. Students will be tested on their respective assigned dates.


Beginning July 13, prior to coming to campus each day, every student must conduct a COVID-19 Health Screening Self-assessment which will include taking your temperature and answering COVID-19 related questions about yourself and those with whom you have been in contact. This assessment will be available through the KCU Safety App. The Office of the Registrar will provide details regarding the access and use of the app.

On Campus Clinical Labs 

For hands on labs with first- and second-year COM students participating in hands-on labs:

  • At a minimum, surgical masks donned at all times with hand sanitizer for all students and teaching clinical faculty. Masks will be made available by KCU.
  • Gloves (non-latex, non-powdered) S, M, L available will be made available in labs for those who desire use, but use will not be required.
  • Safety glasses for students and teaching faculty will be made available at the onset of the fall semester and are required at all times while in lab. Visit the PPE page.

Clinical Rotations & Practicum Rotations

For students participating in clinical rotations or practicums, guidelines of the respective site should be followed relative to protective measures and personal protective equipment (“PPE”). If a shortage of supplies exists at a site or there are concerns about the guidelines in place, students should reach out to the clinical coordinator to discuss a resolution. Additional information is available via Clinical Education and Score 1 for Health.

Research Labs

For students participating in research labs, standard laboratory PPE requirements must be complied with and, where a mask would not normally be required, employees and students must don their personal face mask or covering as described above.

Screening Questionnaire

In order to reduce the potential risk of exposure and prevent the spread of COVID-19, every day prior to entering campus, campus members must conduct a self-screen. Get started by opening the KCU Safety App on your phone, then tap the Health Screen button.

In an effort to streamline the Reawakening site information, we have moved the Screening App instructions to a separate page.

What to Do if You Are Sick

Who is my KCU contact?

Score 1 For Health (1-877-425-0251) will be the initial point of contact for all KCU students. Score 1 will assist in the communication to the appropriate college and programmatic contacts to ensure that status of individuals is known while providing a single point of contact and repository for health matter intake and also maintaining a level of confidentiality relative to specific health issues. Score 1 will assist with follow-ups for positive screenings, expanded contact tracing, and general questions.

What if I have a Positive Screening?

Students with any positives on the screening questionnaire, exhibiting symptoms and/or have a temperature greater than 100.0 will be required to stay home and make contact with Score 1 at 1-877-425-0251.

Return to campus after a positive screening can be accomplished by passing the self-screen, or clearance from a healthcare provider (i.e. reported symptom that resulted in positive screening was evaluated and attributed to another medical condition).

What if I have a positive COVID-19 viral test?

Students who test positive for COVID-19 during the KCU testing events will be notified by KCU’s Score 1 for Health and will receive instructions for proceeding. Students who do not have a health-care provider within your campus community will be referred to one of KCU’s clinical partners. Return to campus can be accomplished only after receiving clearance from your health-care provider with the criteria of having no fever, improved symptoms, and receiving two negative COVID-19 viral tests in a row, taken at least 24 hours apart.