On Monday, we transitioned into the Protect the Pride phase of our Campus COVID-19 Protective Measures. As noted in that announcement, we are prepared to adjust our campus operations based on future guidance. The increase in Delta variant COVID-19 cases is prompting experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to once again recommend face coverings in crowded indoor settings for all individuals, including those who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
In an effort to give our students the best on-campus learning experience possible, beginning Monday, August 9, I am reinstating the executive directive that requires all students, faculty, staff and visitors on the UCCS campus to wear a face covering while indoors. This includes those who have received the COVID-19 vaccine and those who have not.
The Cabinet and I met with our shared governance groups, and we agreed that reinstating this measure is a simple and important way to continue our plans for in-person classes, activities and events on campus, and reduce the possibility of having to move to a remote experience.
Capacities and Considerations
At this point, all classrooms, research areas and labs will remain at full capacity. Instructional modes will remain as scheduled, which is primarily in-person, and the majority of events, services and public spaces (including the Kraemer Family Library) will operate at full capacity. Any changes will be shared as soon as possible.
A few additional considerations:
- Vaccinated individuals in an enclosed office or research lab who apply 10-foot distancing protocols may remove their face coverings in that space.
- For clarity and ADA purposes, faculty and presenters may wear face shields or clear face coverings if they choose, and may remove face coverings when teaching provided they are comfortable doing so and appropriately distanced from attendees.
- Unvaccinated individuals are strongly recommended to wear a face covering when outdoors as well.
Students living in on-campus housing will receive information on Monday regarding additional requirements.
If you have not done so already, please complete your attestation now. Staff are asked to complete the attestation by today, Friday, August 6. Faculty should complete the attestation by Monday, August 16. Students should use the individualized link provided to them by the Wellness Center.
If you are still waiting to receive the vaccine, I urge you to contact the Wellness Center as soon possible to schedule an appointment for a shot. The vaccine is our most powerful tool keep each other safe and finally end this pandemic.
We are prepared to adapt these measures if circumstances change. If the resurgence continues and public health recommendations change, we may increase health and safety measures. However, if we see a significant reduction in the number of COVID-19 cases, and if the attestation shows an increase in vaccination rates, I will rescind the face covering executive directive. Until then, we must ensure the safety and well-being of our campus citizens in the middle of this resurgence, and we can only accomplish this by working together.
I sincerely thank you for all you are doing to support our students and your colleagues. Let’s continue to stay Mountain Lion Strong, together.
Venkat Reddy, Chancellor