Dear Campus Community,
First, I would like to wish you all a healthy and happy new year. Unfortunately, 2022 is still responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and we are actively monitoring the current increase in Omicron. I have been in frequent contact with the CSU Chancellor’s office and my colleagues at CSU. The escalation in positivity rates and the increase in hospitalizations across the state is alarming. This week, when we resumed testing on campus, we saw a similarly large increase in positivity rates. in this context, The university has decided to postpone the start of in-person education until February 14 and most of the campus services will be provided remotely until February 7. c library. Paul Leonard, the Mashof Health Center, the Cesar Chavez Student Center and most of the administrative buildings remain open.
The semester itself will start as planned on January 24th. Courses scheduled to be online will not experience any changes or disruptions. Courses scheduled for in-person will move to remote modalities for the first three weeks of the semester. We will make some exceptions for courses that must meet in person to meet students’ immediate learning needs (these may include hands-on courses in health, science, or arts). The department heads will work with their deans and the dean’s office to determine which courses must be taught in person and students will be notified by January 14 if the course is to be held in person. Don’t expect many exceptions. Courses awarded Personal Exceptions will begin January 24th.
Most campus services, including all student services, will relocate to remote modalities. Virtually all campus offices will reopen on February 7 and will offer a range of in-person and remote services in anticipation of the return of in-person classes on February 14. Students and staff are encouraged to check the website to determine the best way to contact any particular office.
Resident students will hear directly from the dormitory regarding when to return to and transfer to campus. Students currently living in residence halls during the winter break will not be required to leave.
Employees and administrators who have remote work agreements may continue to work remotely as agreed by their supervisor and in line with the needs of their offices and units. As the university remains open, some faculty, staff, and administrators will continue to work on campus as determined by supervisors and institutional need. Staff and faculty who prefer to return to campus for work between now and February 6th can contact their supervisor to make arrangements to return to the office.
I would like to express my gratitude and that of the entire university to those staff members who continue to personally serve our students and our campus community. And I thank you all for your patience and work as we continue to pursue our mission and overcome the challenges of the pandemic.
While this is a moment to be careful, I all remember that this is not a return to March 2020 when we moved all classes and services to remote modalities. Campus remains open. Our student athletes remain competitive. Campus facilities such as the J. Paul Leonard Library, the Mashof Health Center, the Cesar Chavez Student Center and most of the administrative buildings remain open. And we will continue to offer COVID testing and booster clinics on campus.
We are a highly vaccinated and increasingly reinforced campus. COVID-19 is not the same disease it was two years ago, and we are now working on managing an endemic disease. My family personally experiences the benefits of those vaccinations and the booster shots. Earlier this week, my son and I tested positive for COVID-19 but have not shown symptoms yet and other family members are still negative. Like many, that wasn’t my idea of starting 2022, but thanks to our multiple vaccine doses, we’re doing well.
Local health experts believe the current increase will peak at the end of January. Delaying personalized guidance and personalized services allows time for all of us to get our booster shots and to soften the post-holiday surge somewhat. For some of us, this temporary delay comes as a relief, for others, a sad step back. We have all expectations In-person services will resume on February 7 and in-person lessons will resume on February 14We will provide a campus update on February 1 to confirm plans to resume. We will continue to respond to the advice of professionals in public health and medicine and communicate our responses quickly.
As always, I wish you good health.
Lynn Mahoney, Ph.D.