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VCU Massey Cancer Center


Microscopy Shared Resource Staged Reopening:  Return to Research Update for Users


  1. MOST IMPORTANTLY- Core services will only be provided to those persons who are authorized to be on campus during each corresponding phase, who have completed mandatory training, and who have made their daily attestation of health status prior to entering VCU premises.
  2. Prioritization will be first given to internal COVID-19 research, then MCC researchers with NIH funding, and early career researchers. Imminent grant proposal dates or manuscript resubmissions (with proof) may also be taken into account.  All other internal research follows. External use will not be approved during this phase. All prioritization will be decided by the MSR Director. If a dispute arises, the MSR Director will consult with the VCU Director of Research Infrastructure. Per guidance from the OVPRI, services charged against an internal VCU financial index will be considered internal for the purpose of prioritization, while all others will be consider external, regardless of the investigator’s status with respect to VCU affiliation.  
  3. The scheduling calendars for electron microscopes (TEM and SEM) will be closed until further notice. All scheduling will be done by contacting Terry Smith ( When emailing to schedule, you must receive a confirmation email back from Terry to be considered scheduled.
  4. Users must do their best to practice social distancing while working in the Microscopy core. Only a single user is allowed at any time are allowed in a microscope room.
  5. All meetings/questions/discussions/sample drop-offs need to be by appointment. MSR will not accept drop-ins. 
  6. Users are requested to knock at the door and wait for staff to answer and to talk with them in the hallway.
  7. In order to allow one hour of air exchange time between users in a room, users must reserve instruments (where applicable) at least one hour after the end of the previous reservation.
  8. All training sessions will be scheduled on a one-to-one basis. Consultations with more than one person will be held by Zoom.
  9. When arriving for your scheduled time, please do not enter the facilities early. You MUST wear a mask and gloves and abide by social distancing whenever possible. You will not be allowed to enter without a mask.
  10. Before handling microscopes users must disinfect their gloves with the 70% EtOH that is provided in each instrument room.
  11. Users must clean all surfaces that will be touched both before and after their microscope/instrument session. Instrument-specific instructions and supplies for this are provided in each instrument room.
  12. Users will be trained to clean microscope oculars as a regular part of cleaning. Starting June 15, 2020, upon first use of microscopes users must check in with staff for this brief training update.
  13. If you feel sick, have a fever, feel achy, or have lost your sense of taste or smell, please use common sense and do not come to the MSR. You will not be charged for a cancelation to keep everyone safe.


Reminder:  Please kindly acknowledge the use of the VCU MCC Microscopy Shared Resource using the following statement:  “Microscopy was performed at the VCU Massey Cancer Center Microscopy Core Facility and supported, in part, with funding from NIH-NCI Cancer Center Support Grant P30 CA016059.”


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