Returning to campus full-time after more than a year apart represents a hard-won victory. With testing, face coverings and physical distancing we are successfully navigating the pandemic. The good news is that the wide-spread and increasing availability of vaccines proven to be effective against COVID-19 is allowing us to take the next step in returning to more normal operations this summer with a planned full return to face-to-face instruction this fall. We strongly urge all faculty, staff, and students to get the vaccine as soon as possible.
We are planning for a phased approach for staff to return to full-time on-campus work, with an increased in-person schedule beginning June 1 and the goal of a full return to campus by July 6. Supervisors and employees should start planning now and use the month of June to implement their return to work plan. We will continue to follow CDC and Ohio Department of Health guidance now and after we return. We will also be sharing information about a series of “Return to Work” transition seminars beginning in May, and will provide additional resources for both employees and supervisors as we navigate our “new normal” together.
We expect staffing and operations after July 6 to closely resemble staffing and operations prior to the pandemic. While we continue to embrace our mission to provide highly personalized instruction and services to our students, we are working on a policy that will allow more flexibility, including teleworking options for some staff roles. In addition, a team is developing plans for a return to research and travel. We will provide more detailed information soon.
To help ensure the safety of the campus community, we will continue to implement recommendations from the CDC and state and continue to adjust as these recommendations are updated: all employees should wear masks except when working alone in an assigned work area, observe good hygiene practices, and stay home if they are feeling unwell. We will continue to offer vaccination clinics over the summer; employees can also identify vaccination opportunities near them.
Never before have Miamians had to adapt so quickly to so many circumstances outside our immediate control. We will continue to adjust to the situation as it changes. I am honored and humbled to lead such a talented, hard-working, and dedicated university community. Thank you for your flexibility and resilience throughout the pandemic.
Love and Honor,