President Dr. Robert C. Robbins said in an email Friday, July 10, around 3 p.m. that University of Arizona administration still plans to reopen the campus this fall among Arizona’s high numbers of COVID-19 cases.
Although Robbins and the Reentry Task Force have not met for a public discussion in the past two weeks, Robbins announced this reentry update in an email to UA students.
“We continue to plan to be on campus this fall and are excited to kick off the academic semester with a strong start,” Robbins said. “We also know the situation will continue to evolve. All of us will need to call on our shared values of adaptation and compassion as we adjust to local conditions and support individual choice for our entire campus community.”
He also announced each fall class will be held in one of four modalities: in-person, flex in-person, live online and iCourses. Some courses have already been changed to match these new modes on UAccess.
It is not yet clear what each modality will exactly entail.
“If you are at high-risk for serious complications from a possible COVID-19 infection, you should stay home and take advantage of our Live Online and iCourses learning options, to the extent possible within your degree program,” Robbins said.
At the last reentry press conference on June 25, Provost Liesl Folks spoke with the Daily Wildcat, saying in some academic programs, “there’s no choice for an online mode,” including courses requiring performance, labs or research.
As the university moves forward in their reopening plan, UA Housing & Residential Life is also preparing to have students back in the dorms.
In an email sent Thursday, July 9, Housing & Residential Life shared new “COVID-19 mitigation policies” and move-in information.
“Housing & Residential Life has established plans surrounding health and safety in the dorms for the fall semester, in consultation with Campus Health Services and University Leadership,” the email stated. “These plans may change as we continue to monitor and respond to recommendations and guidelines from the appropriate authorities.”
The email included a link to a page on Housing & Residential Life’s website that includes update information about COVID-19 planned policies and procedures for dorm-living come fall.
According to the website, all students living in the dorms will be required to wear face masks in all areas outside their room — excluding “personal hygiene activities” — and when interacting with staff members.
Additionally, residents will only be able to host two students who are not assigned to that resident hall at any given time and only in common spaces while wearing a face covering — no guests will be permitted in the actual rooms or apartments.
Currently, residence hall move-in dates are scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 19, through Friday, Aug. 21 and will occur in 30-minute time slots.
The email also included general move-in guidelines, including that students can only bring a maximum of two guests to assist them and that they will only be able to move in during a specific time slot they have chosen prior to arrival.
Housing & Residential Life also said they were “developing a plan to isolate students who test positive while living in the dorms.” Folks provided more information on the isolation plans to the Daily Wildcat during the June 25 Reentry Task Force press conference.
According to the UA’s coronavirus information page, the next Reentry Task Force weekly briefing will be held Thursday, July 16 at 10 a.m.
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