March 1, 2022
Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff,
As you are likely aware, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Friday eased indoor mask requirements for the vast majority of the country. As a vaccinated and boosted community, we are continuing to fulfill our obligation in support of public health and with care for one another, and in light of new CDC guidance, we are hopeful changes to our policies are on the horizon.
As we evaluate our testing data, we have to acknowledge the number of positive cases that remain within our campus community, though we are beginning to see those numbers encouragingly subside. Based on our most recent assessment of campus conditions, we will be maintaining our indoor mask mandate through spring break, which begins Saturday, March 19. We will then reassess and determine if we can relax some of our indoor mask requirements – or any other policy, including surveillance testing – for the remainder of the semester, contingent on weekly test results and public health guidance. This is certainly the direction we hope we are heading in, but our campus data must support the decision.
On February 11, you were informed that small indoor gatherings of up to 40 people were permitted but could not exceed 50 percent capacity of a space. This policy remains in place at least through the next week as we monitor COVID cases on campus. Regarding other changes in gathering guidance, we expect to make an announcement by Wednesday, March 9.
Thank you for all that you do to keep the campus as safe as it can be. We continue to applaud your patience and cooperation as we manage the ongoing fatigue of the pandemic. As always, please continue to take the necessary precautions as we inch closer to easing guidance, with the understanding that our testing data has a central role in our ability to do so.
In another update, the college will occasionally rotate the co-chairs of the COVID Steering Committee. The change gives the outgoing chair an opportunity to remain on the committee and participate from a different perspective. As such, Jason Rojas has transitioned out of the COVID Steering Committee co-chair role. Dan Hitchell joins Joe DiChristina as the new co-chair of the committee.
Though we are keeping our indoor mask mandate in place for the time being, we will continue to monitor our experience with the anticipation of sharing more information on the status of our policies before students return from spring break.
Joe DiChristina, Vice President for Student Success and Enrollment Management
Dan Hitchell, Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer