COVID - 19 - coronavirus

covid-19 coronavirus

Please continue to monitor all college communication channels for the most up-to-date information and specifics regarding this evolving situation. The FAQ document below also contains answers to many general questions regarding current college operations and will be updated as needed during this time. It is a fluid document that will be updated as needed with any new information, guidelines or regulations that may be implemented.


all GCSC campuses are open  

Courses will be offered in a variety of modalities: face-to-face, online, or hybrid.

The College is committed to the safety of all students, faculty and staff and continues to follow guidelines provided by the CDC and health officials. Students, employees and visitors will be required to wear face coverings while inside College facilities. Individuals are encouraged to bring their own reusable face coverings. Reusable masks will be available for purchase in the GCSC Bookstore. Additionally, safety protocols are in place if an employee or student is exposed to or contracts COVID-19.

The College has also taken additional precautionary safety measures including: installing Plexiglas shields in high traffic areas; distributing reusable masks to full-time employees; fogging classrooms, labs and public spaces with disinfectant; equipping classrooms with disinfectant wipes; and nightly facilities crews for extra cleaning. 

help protect yourself & others from covid-19

face masks are required in all college facilities for any person who has not been fully vaccinated.

  • Fully Vaccinated defined by the CDC:
    • 2 weeks after your second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or
    • 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson Janssen vaccine

Governor DeSantis issued the State of Florida Executive Orders EO-21-101 and EO-21-102 on May 4, 2021. These executive orders do no affect Florida College System institutions or K-12.

  • Executive Order EO-21-101 is not effective until July 1, 2021, and Executive Order EO-21-102 is effective immediately.
    • To clarify, EO-21-102 only impacts city and county governments, and does NOT impact Florida College System (FCS) institutions or your K-12 public schools.
    • Moreover, EO-21-101 and EO-21-102 only impact restrictive COVID-19 orders/ordinances that are adopted through emergency enactment.

General Guidelines

  • Students share a commitment to reduce the risk of contracting and/or transmitting COVID-19.
  • All students will wear a mask at all times when in buildings.  The mask should fully cover nose and mouth appropriately.  DO NOT lower mask to chin, even while speaking. If mask becomes soiled, or moist it should be changed immediately.
  •  All students should follow the following simple rules to avoid getting sick:
    • Wash your hands often
    • Avoid close contact, maintain 6 feet (about two arms’ length) from others
    • Cover your mouth and nose around others (masks as stated above)
    •  Cover coughs and sneezes
    •  Clean your work areas when possible
    •  Monitor your health daily
    • All students should stay home if experiencing symptoms of illness such as a temperature >100.4 F and/or chills, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, headache, diarrhea, nausea/vomiting, body aches (myalgia), new loss of taste or smell, congestion or runny nose, cough, and fatigue.  If you have any trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion, inability to wake or stay awake, bluish lips or face, call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency room.

exposure quarantine/tested positive quarantine

What is an exposure?

  •  A community-related exposure is defined by the CDC as having close contact with a person who has shown symptoms of COVID-19 and has a positive test result. Exposure can occur whether you are wearing a mask, or not. What counts as close contact?
    • You were within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days prior to test specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated.
    • You provided care at home to someone who is sick with COVID-19, or reside with them.
    • You had direct physical contact with the person (touched, hugged, or kissed them).
    • You shared eating or drinking utensils.
    • They sneezed, coughed, or somehow got respiratory droplets on you.
    • Those who have tested positive or have been fully vaccinated (both COVID-19 doses) in the last 90 days do not have to quarantine from exposure if no symptoms exist.

What do you do if you believe you have been exposed?

  • If you have been in close contact with a person who has COVID-19, you will have to stay at home up to 14 days from your last contact with that person. You should monitor yourself for symptoms. If you have no symptoms at all, the 14-day quarantine can be reduced to 10 days without a test. If you have no symptoms at all and can produce a negative test result, you can shorten the 14-day quarantine to 7 days. The negative test result must have been done within 48 hours of the 7th day. Please contact Mr. South’s office for more information. If you develop symptoms, please refer to the "IF I HAVE SYMPTOMS OR TEST POSITIVE" section below.

What do I do if I have symptoms or test positive?

  • If your symptoms are mild, your healthcare provider may advise you to get tested. If you test positive, or do not test, you will need to self-isolate for 10 days after symptom onset. At the end of 10 days if you have gone 24 hours with no fever or use of fever-reducing medications, you will be able to return to the campus. Make sure your symptoms have improved. If you test positive again after recovery, you do not need to repeat the self-isolation guidelines previously mentioned.
  • If your symptoms are severe, consult your healthcare provider immediately.
  • If you test negative, you will be able to return to campus after 24 hours of no fever or use of fever-reducing medications. Make sure your symptoms have improved.
  • Notify your professor of your condition. Your professor should then direct you to contact Mr. Damian South, Associate Director of Campus Safety and Security (, or at 850-873-3582). The information provided to your professor and Mr. South is considered protected and will not be shared.

when can i return to campus after testing positive?

  • There are several factors to be considered when determining when it is appropriate to return to campus after a positive COVID-19 test. Please consult with Mr. South to discuss your individual situation and ensure you get back to campus in a safe and timely manner. 

*Please keep in mind the CDC guidelines change frequently. Please contact Mr. South if you have questions.*

Messages from the President

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 8/14/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 7/17/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 6/30/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 6/5/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 5/29/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 5/15/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 5/8/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 4/24/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 4/17/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 4/10/2020

A message from Dr. Holdnak, President 4/3/2020

A Message from Dr. Holdnak, President 3/27/2020

A Message from GCSC Faculty 3/26/2020


the health & well being of the community is a top priority at gcsc

Gulf Coast State College is committed to the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff and it is our highest priority.  The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO) and the Florida Department of Health (FDOH) are constantly monitoring conditions world-wide, and updating their guidelines and procedures – and we are closely monitoring the public health issues related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19).  The Florida Department of Health has stressed that “the overall immediate threat to the public remains low,” and that everyday good hygiene routines are the best way to avoid exposure to the virus.

According to the CDC, WHO and FDOH, the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus and to practice everyday good hygiene routines. These include:

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces
  • Cover your cough or sneeze into a tissue or use your sleeve
  • Use hand sanitizer when you don’t have access to soap and running water
  • Stay home when you are sick!
  • Other CDC recommendations regarding COVID-19.


Please refer to the CDC Guidelines regarding travel precautions and recommendations. 

Helpful information


About COVID-19

  • For the most up-to-date information regarding COVID-19 please visit the CDC website