It has been almost two years since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and in that time a lot has been asked of you as a member of the campus community. You have been asked to teach or attend classes virtually. You have been asked to keep your distance from others and give up the many activities on campus. You’ve been asked to test, and report symptoms, and get vaccinated, and test again. And you have been asked to be patient, so patient, as we work through a situation with little to no knowledge about what may happen next.
Thank you for your patience. Thank you for your ability to adjust and make changes, both big and small, to stop the spread of the virus on campus. Most of all, thank you for taking the steps that will eventually, hopefully, bring this pandemic to an end.
Of course, the pandemic is not over. We still have a way to go. But we have very encouraging data that the end may be in sight. Currently, more than 85% of students (see latest vaccination rates at coronavirus.utah.edu) are either partially or completely vaccinated, similar to rates for faculty and staff. We also have seen the number of cases reported on campus remain low throughout the fall semester—with just under 400 cases reported at this time.
Let’s keep this momentum going. As we head into fall break, please take a moment to schedule a COVID-19 test before heading off campus and plan to get another test when you return. Knowing your status will help stop the spread of the virus and protect public health. Even if you are vaccinated, there is still a slim chance you can contract and spread COVID-19. Testing helps prevent that from happening.
We have all done so much work to keep our community safe, and to continue the work of education at the University of Utah. We have really lived up to the ideal of being “one U.”
Thank you for all you have done, and all you will do.
Enjoy your fall break.