From the Vice President for Student Affairs, re: Return to Campus Update

July 27, 2021

Hello, SCSU Faculty and Staff Colleagues!

Summer is flying by and we are getting closer to the fall semester.  We are committed to a safe and healthy campus and we want you to be excited to return to campus on a full-time basis.  As such, we have some important COVID mitigation information to share as we prepare for a full return to campus on August 2. I would ask that you please read this message carefully.

Masks
We are going back to wearing masks beginning August 2.  This is a change from the mask requirement outlined in the July 14 memo from President Joe.  The CT Department of Administrative Services is requiring mask-wearing to assist with having larger numbers of employees in offices.  Indeed, the return to full-time work on campus will be a big transition for many in our community.  While I can’t wait to have a high level of activity on campus, we want to do so in a way that feels healthy and safe. Everyone, including those fully vaccinated, must be masked indoors when outside of their personal space.  In your office, cubicle or work space, you are welcome to be mask-free.  In any common/public spaces everyone must be masked.  Masks are not required outdoors.

Vaccination
Having a highly vaccinated campus is a top priority for a full and vibrant fall semester. The evidence is strong to indicate that vaccination is very effective at lessening the likelihood of contracting COVID and keeping a person from getting serious symptoms if contracting the virus.  Being vaccinated may also protect people around you, especially those who are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.  The unvaccinated remain those who are at high risk for getting COVID and for getting more gravely sick as a result of it.  Our next vaccination clinics on campus will be held August 2nd- August 6th from 12:00pm to 6:00pm.  No appointment is necessary.

As you have likely heard, the CSCU System is requiring vaccination of our students.  While that decision has not been made for employees, we cannot rely on only the vaccination of students to have a positive and productive fall semester.  We need all members of our campus community to be vaccinated.  Please consider vaccination as the way to protect yourself and to protect our Southern community.

As we assess the level of vaccination within our campus community, as well as the possible impact of the Delta variant, we will continue to review our mitigation practices.  We hope to have a highly vaccinated campus that will allow us greater ability to make different decisions.  We have to protect the members of our campus who are unable to be vaccinated, who are immunocompromised, and/or who live with people who are unable to be vaccinated.  It takes all of us doing our part to create an environment where we feel healthy, safe and engaged.

I can’t wait to see you all back on campus!  We are SouthernStrong!

Sincerely,

Tracy Tyree
Vice President for Student Affairs