I hope you’ve enjoyed your first full week of the 2021-22 academic year. Like so many of you, I’ve been eager for our community to return to campus, and it’s been great to see the energy, enthusiasm, and joy that you’ve brought to the start of the year.
As all of us know, we’re still navigating the uncertainties that come with the COVID-19 pandemic. As you likely saw in Director of Student Health & Wellness Services Casey Anderson’s message yesterday, announcing new student testing protocols, our COVID-19 positivity rate among students is very low, which is great news. (Please don’t forget to sign up for a testing appointment.) Thank you for all that you’re doing to help keep members of our community, including yourselves, healthy and safe. From masking, to being fully vaccinated, to following commonsense safety precautions, your commitment to the well-being of your friends and peers, as well as to faculty and staff members, is the reason that we are able to eat, and socialize, and learn, and live together — to return to the in-person, residential experience that we’ve all been waiting for.
We also know that COVID-19 remains a constantly evolving challenge. Though the number of positive cases on campus is very low, we’ve seen instances in which students are not following our COVID-19 policies and safety protocols. I know how anxious you are to see your friends and to gather together to socialize. Please keep in mind, though, that our ability to maintain the academic experience all of us want — to maintain some sense of normalcy — relies heavily on all of us making good decisions around health and safety. Our vigilance is especially important now with the current rise in cases of the COVID-19 delta variant in Delaware County and the surrounding areas; it’s proven to be highly transmissible, even by those who are fully vaccinated.
All of us want you to enjoy your time here and get the most out of your Swarthmore experience, and as you do so, I urge you to please continue to keep the health and well-being of your friends, yourselves, and the greater campus community in mind.
Thank you, and have a great weekend,
Vice President for Student Affairs