Dear students,Leopard head with mask

I know you are anxious for some sense of normalcy to return to College Hill and your lives. Vaccines are that path forward. If you missed the announcement yesterday in Lafayette Today about how to sign up for your vaccine, check it out and register to get vaccinated right here on campus next Monday and Tuesday. 

  • Our undefeated men’s soccer team takes on Lehigh Friday night, and we will play the 156th Lafayette-Lehigh game Saturday. Behaviorally, this is a critical weekend for us. With almost 1,000 students poised to be vaccinated next week in addition to the hundreds who recently got vaccinated, we are definitely heading in the right direction. That said, allowing your behavior to slip this weekend could undermine all of the great work that has been done. 
  • Forty-two student positives and two employee cases were found in testing over the past seven days for a positivity rate of 1.9% for students and 0.4% for faculty and staff. We will remain in Operational Level 1. These numbers are concerning, but not unexpected given where we are in the semester. Our student cases remain largely asymptomatic or with mild symptoms, which is encouraging.
  • The CDC recommends any of the three vaccines for effectively keeping individuals protected from the very worst outcomes of COVID-19 and, as an increasing number of studies show, all three also help prevent asymptomatic transmission should you still become infected. A great benefit of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine we have available for distribution next week is that you will only need one shot. 
  • The CDC does not require those fully immunized to quarantine if exposed to a positive COVID-19 case. The College no longer requires testing prior to returning from travel for those who are fully vaccinated. Beginning April 26 we will allow fully vaccinated students to opt out of weekly testing. Look for a survey in next week’s update to send us your vaccine card and let us know if you want to opt out.

We still require masks inside all buildings (with exceptions for your residence hall room) and outside when you can’t keep six feet between yourself and others. As we see more information regarding the number of fully vaccinated students on campus, we will revisit if additional operational changes can be made. We are also planning to add data on the number of students vaccinated to our COVID-19 dashboard, so stay tuned.

If you have questions, please contact me.

Annette Diorio
Vice President for Campus Life