This week brings two pieces of information, one encouraging and the other concerning. In terms of vaccine access, Pennsylvania has revised the information about eligibility and established a timeline for various residents. At the same time that we are seeing increased vaccine access, COVID-19 infection rates are climbing in a number of states including Pennsylvania. Most concerning within this trend is the juxtaposition of rising rates within Northampton County against rising rates in neighboring states where many of our students are from and a number have visited recently.
- Eleven student positives and five employee cases were found in testing over the past seven days for a positivity rate of 0.5% for students and 1.2% for faculty and staff. As a reminder, we will remain in Operational Level 1 until at least April 8.
- The CDC Guidance allows for much greater flexibility with how fully vaccinated individuals interact; however, please remember that our policies are more restrictive for all members of the community. This means that regardless of your vaccination status you need to follow our masking and distancing guidance in College facilities. Being fully vaccinated does not ensure that you won’t catch or spread COVID-19, although in most cases the risk of either drops significantly. As there is no easy way for your peers or faculty and staff to know who has been vaccinated, we will continue to follow our masking and distancing guidelines as a community.
- Students interested in getting specific updates on vaccine access in Pennsylvania should complete a brief survey to allow us to better connect you with local resources. Students who have been vaccinated should send their completed vaccine record to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Our recent positive COVID-19 cases have resulted in a larger-than-anticipated number of students being quarantined. Please remember, you need to remain vigilant about limiting your unique social contacts. Large numbers of students being quarantined can also strain resources and require operational level shifts that restrict all students.
If you have questions, please contact me.
Vice President for Campus Life