The school made the announcement Wednesday in a notice to students and staff "out of an abundance of caution."
The school said the employee was last on campus March 6, and is being treated at the hospital. Another member of the athletics department who had contact with the person is under self-quarantine, and is not showing symptoms at this time, the university said.
So far, there have been five reported cases of the virus in Clarke County, in the Athens area.
"While we understand the concerns and fear around COVID-19, it is extremely important to stay calm and maintain a close eye on your health and any symptoms that may arise," the university said.
Symptoms of the virus include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Most cases of COVID-19 are mild with symptoms similar to a cold.
The university reiterated recommendations by health experts to prevent the spread of the virus, including social distancing, hand washing and staying home if sick.
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