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COVID-19 Weekly Update - week ending 9/3/21 - New Mask Requirements

 

Effective Immediately: Masks will be required in all indoor public spaces except residence halls. This requirement is in place for a minimum of one week due to the increase of positive cases this past week including five new cases today.  A determination will be made next Friday regarding an extension or relaxing of the requirement.  If the trend continues, additional restrictions could be put in place. 

 
This spike in cases is placing significant stress on the people dedicated to responding and providing care and fulfilling our academic mission.  While we cannot stop COVID-19, we can adapt to our local and regional realities and seek to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 on campus. Aside from vaccinations, properly fitted and worn masks remain one of the most effective measures against transmission of the vaccine.   
 
For the next week, masks are to be worn inside all public areas of buildings including academic buildings, Probasco, the Kirk, the Library, the Chapel, and public areas of Ashe/Barnes when not exercising/practicing.  Masks are to be worn in Carter Basement and 1st floor with exceptions of private offices and when eating in the Great Hall. 
 
In addition, the following measures are strongly recommended:
  • Spread out when possible in all classes and maximize all rows and seats to increase distancing.  While not possible in some classes, it is very helpful for contact tracing purposes to put six feet of distance between you and others.
  • Where possible, move activities, meetings, prayer and praises, etc. outside.  The pool deck will soon be finished and additional tables and chairs will be situated for outdoor dining and gathering space. 
  • Be mindful of the number of close contacts you are making - particularly during this current surge of cases on campus.  
The good news is that the quarantine protocols are working as people comply.  With five positive cases today, there was a smaller number of close contacts than expected since the majority of the positives were already in quarantine as close contacts due to exposure.  This matters when trying to maximize limited quarantine space.  Our number of vaccinated students has also been helpful as those students do not need to quarantine when identified as a close contact if asymptomatic per the public health department.
 
We are finding that close contacts are more likely to test positive than last year as this variant is much more transmissible. When you see a call coming from an unknown Covenant number, please answer or call back immediately.  It is likely our contact tracers attempting to reach you.  Compliance with this, masking, and distancing will allow us to slow the spread. 
 
Thanks for loving others well through these sacrificial actions. 
 
------------------------------ ------------------------------ --

Data as of September 3, 2021

 

Active positives (student): 20

Active positives (employee): 1

 

Quarantined (student): 42

Quarantined (employee): 2  

 

Positives since August 16 (student): 25

Positives since August 16 (employee): 4

 

Brad Voyles

Vice President for Student Development and Dean of Students

 

Graduate School of Education

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Academic Certificates

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Art

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Biblical & Theological Studies

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Business

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Computer Science

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Economics & Community Development

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Education

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Engineering 3:2 Program

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English

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Health, Wellness and Coaching

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History & Politics

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Interdisciplinary Studies

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International Studies

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Mathematics

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Music

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Philosophy

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Physics

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Pre-Professional Programs

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Psychology

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Sociology

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Theatre

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World Languages

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