Return to Campus Fall 2021 Update

Jul. 01, 2021 by Kristi Kirk

NOTE:  For the most updated information regarding masks, vaccinations, and other related information, please see COVID-19 Information.

[Updated July 1, 2021]

In May, University leadership announced a July 1 timeline for sharing the final decision about plans for the Fall 2021 semester. The following communication provides an update and overview of the next steps of our return to in-person learning and working.

Dear CTX students,  

After spending many months apart, the Concordia University leadership team is excited to announce that the University will return to in-person learning for the 2021-22 academic year.  

Before we outline the details of our return to campus, we would like to take a moment to thank each of you for your hard work, dedication, flexibility, and resilience as we faced the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic together. We have collectively encountered many challenges for the past 18 months. We are proud of what we were able to accomplish together despite the obstacles the pandemic placed in our paths.  

Please know that the University leadership team will continue monitoring the guidance of local, state, and national public health experts and provide timely updates to our campus community of any changes to our policies, procedures, and practices. In addition, we are committed to ensuring safe campus operations, so students feel comfortable and confident when they return to campus. 

Please read the following sections carefully to learn more about our Return to Campus processes.  

Health and Safety Protocols 

As always, your health and safety remain our top priority. Therefore, we will continue many of our current health and safety protocols over the next several months, including cleaning and sanitizing surfaces, providing hand sanitizing stations, and working to spread people out as much as possible. 

Vaccinations  

We encourage each member of our community to receive a vaccination. However, vaccinations are not required. All vaccinated faculty, staff, and students who report vaccinations to the University will not be required to undergo testing or quarantine in the event of positive exposure. Those who have not reported or are not vaccinated will be subject to the same testing and quarantine protocols that have been in place for the last year. 

If you are fully vaccinated, we encourage you to complete the confidential vaccination reporting form. Reporting vaccination status is not required of the entire campus community. However, completing the vaccination reporting form will help us understand the potential risk for COVID-19 spread and exposure on our campus.   

While we will not require all students, faculty, or staff to report vaccinations, individuals engaged in certain group activities will be required to report vaccinations to remove other COVID-19 related testing and quarantining protocols. These activities include athletics, performing arts, university-related travel, or student groups that meet in person. Nursing students will also be required to report vaccinations.  

We will work with our partners to provide vaccination opportunities for every member of our campus community. We will provide more information as those opportunities become available.  

Mask Requirements 

After reviewing updated guidance from the CDC on mask use and vaccinations, we will make facial coverings optional for fully vaccinated individuals. Masks and face coverings are required for those individuals who are not vaccinated per CDC guidelines. While face coverings are not required for fully vaccinated individuals, everyone should feel free to continue wearing masks if they are more comfortable doing so. We will continue monitoring public health guidance regarding face coverings and update our policies according to emerging health and safety research and information.  

Residential Life 

Our residence halls will follow the University's health and safety protocols, including continuing our cleaning and sanitation practices, providing hand sanitizing stations, and practicing social distancing. In addition, we will offer COVID-19 testing for residential students and make the vaccine available to our community on campus. We will provide more information as those opportunities become available. 

Support and Resources  

We recognize the shift back to in-person learning might be difficult for some students. However, we have several resources to help students navigate this change. If you need help, contact Student Central at studentcentral@concordia.edu. You may also schedule an appointment with the Counseling Center by sending an email to counseling@concordia.edu 

Additionally, our Campus Ministry team will continue to provide pastoral counseling, spiritual care, prayer, and encouragement. For more information, visit Campus Ministry 

Classrooms and Labs  

We have assessed classroom spaces and, where possible, moved classes into larger rooms to allow students and faculty to distance themselves. All classrooms and lab spaces will continue to be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized between each use.  

In-person Learning Exemptions  

Students with documented medical concerns may apply for an in-person learning exemption. We will work with students who receive a health-related exemption individually to ensure they receive a robust and equitable learning experience.  Students who are interested in completing an in-person learning exemption application should contact Aaron Graf at Aaron.Graf@concordia.edu. All applications must be completed and submitted by August 6, 2021. 

You can find more information about our return to campus at COVID-19 Information. If you have questions or would like to express a concern, please email Student Central at studentcentral@concordia.edu.  

Sincerely,  

Dr. Kristi Kirk
Provost 

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