Virtual Town Hall Key Takeaways
Dear faculty and staff,
Thank you to those who joined the recent Virtual Town Hall. Your commitment and resolve to campus vaccination and masking policies continue to keep UIC safe.
Nearly 96% of students and employees are vaccinated, and the virus positivity rate on campus since August is less than 0.6%. The 4% of the UIC community that are not fully vaccinated have approved exemptions or are in the review process for exemptions or compliance. Learn more by visiting UIC’s COVID-19 dashboard. If you missed the town hall, view the recording online as well as a summary of key takeaways below.
- UIC and UI Health have provided more than 375,000 COVID-19 tests and 145,000 vaccinations have been administered since the beginning of the pandemic.
- COVID-19 booster vaccines and seasonal flu shots are available for faculty and staff.
- Employees who were partially vaccinated as of Oct. 1 have until the end of the month to receive their second dose.
- New hires must disclose their vaccination status or have an approved exemption within four weeks of their starting date.
Health and safety measures
- Campus cleaning standards and expectations have been adjusted to ensure that all high general traffic areas and classrooms are cleaned daily.
- Cleaning responsibilities for faculty, staff, and students include private offices, open workspaces, collaboration spaces, and break rooms.
- Our campus spaces have adequate ventilation to limit COVID-19 transmission, and the campus has significantly increased the amount of fresh air introduced into each building as well as the overall ventilation rate. Only 32 rooms require supplemental HEPA ventilation units. The environmental health and safety team also routinely inspects campus spaces with an emphasis on safety in labs and in classrooms.
Campus engagement and looking ahead
- Students are engaging with the campus through virtual and in-person events, and COVID-19 protocols have ensured that they remain safe. Nearly 2,900 students are living in campus residence halls this fall, and 97% are vaccinated.
- Additional indoor study spaces for students will be available during the winter months.
- The Provost Office, the Vice Chancellor for Innovation Office and the Center for the Advancement of Teaching Excellence (CATE) will be working with a group of faculty to evaluate options and plans for campus contact tracing practices to be implemented for spring 2022.
- The large majority of courses are expected to be held in-person during spring semester. However, we will remain flexible in case we need to follow updated public health recommendations at that time.
- The Telecommuting/Remote Work Policy announced in May remains in effect.
Thank you for your continued cooperation and innovative ideas to keep our campus community safe and moving forward.