Dear Alfred University alumni, parents, and friends,
With the calendar turning from June to July and August fast approaching, Alfred University continues its preparations for welcoming students to campus for the 2020-21 academic year, with Fall 2020 semester classes set to begin August 24. Staff began returning to campus this week and we have created a plan for students’ arrival during the month of August.
Regular communications with the University community are key as we continue to meet the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and achieve our goal of creating the safest possible learning, living, and working environment on our campus.
Today, we launched our Reopening Campus Fall 2020 website, which provides another vehicle of communication to the University and local communities. The website contains a link to our Reopening Plan, information for students and their families, as well as staff and faculty; steps we are taking to maximize safety across campus and in the local community; information on athletics (including the status of Fall sports schedules) and athletics facilities; and guidelines for visitors. Frequently asked questions (FAQs) will be posted to the site soon.
Two weeks ago, we began distributing email updates on the status of our Reopening Plan, which was submitted last Friday to the New York State Department of Health for approval. The plan is comprehensive and meets the State’s reopening guidelines for institutions of higher education. Among the information contained in our plan:
- Fall 2020 academic calendar updates – The two-day Fall Semester break in October has been eliminated to allow on-campus instruction (including in-person final exams) to conclude by Wednesday, November 25, before Thanksgiving
- Students will arrive in August on a staggered schedule and will undergo an immediate health screening. International students and students arriving from other states deemed by New York State to be high risk will be required to quarantine. Two residence halls will be designated for use for quarantine and isolation
- Classes – A mix of in-person and online coursework will provide our students the experience of learning in the classroom, lab, and studio while also promoting health and safety
- Personal protection guidelines – Requirements for utilizing Personal Protective Equipment (masks/face coverings), practicing personal hygiene, and abiding by social distancing measures. Students will be required to bring masks/face coverings and thermometers
- Campus safeguards – In addition to screening students once they arrive on campus in August, all students, staff, and faculty will be required to undergo daily symptoms screening throughout the semester. Classrooms and common spaces, including dining facilities, will be remodeled to provide for social distancing
- Our Communication Plan – This will include weekly COVID-19 updates emailed and posted to the University website (including my.alfred.edu and Alfred Today) as well as social media platforms; and a “dashboard” on our COVID-19 web page that will provide daily data relating to test volumes, positive test results, and COVID-19 information from the Allegany County Health Department
We encourage students and parents, staff, and faculty to visit our reopening website regularly for the latest updates. We all share in the responsibility of protecting the health and well-being of students, faculty, and staff, as well as those who live and work in the local community. Those responsibilities can be best met by learning and following the guidance contained in our Reopening Plan.
Fiat Lux,Alfred University Reopening Implementation Team