State COVID-19 guidance confirms Alfred University plans to reopen in fall
On Saturday, New York State announced guidance for institutions of higher education to reopen their campuses for the upcoming fall 2020 semester. Alfred University complies with the state’s guidelines, confirming the University’s plans to reopen.
"We are confident our plan meets the state’s requirements for reopening and that we will be welcoming students to our campus in August," said Mark Zupan, Alfred University president. Classes for the fall 2020 semester are scheduled to begin Aug. 24 and all final exams will be concluded by noon on Wednesday, Nov. 25, before Thanksgiving.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Alfred University has been closed to all but essential staff since late March. Students received instruction online for the final two months of the spring semester and non-essential employees have been working from home.
New York State has defined four phases to reopen businesses and other organizations. Phase 1 began May 15; colleges and universities are included in Phase 4, with the expectation that institutions can reopen once they have filed a structured plan with the state. Alfred University’s plan-developed by four faculty-staff-student teams focusing on Academic Affairs, Campus Life, Operations, and Communications-will be submitted to the State Department of Health on Tuesday, June 30.
"We have worked extremely hard on our reopening plan, which places the highest emphasis on the safety and well-being of our students, staff, and faculty, as well as the local community," Zupan commented, adding that all members of the University community share in the responsibility of creating and sustaining a healthy campus environment. "In order to ensure our commitment to safety, students, staff, and faculty must each fulfill this important responsibility."
Those expectations include practicing social distancing, completing daily health screenings, wearing protective face coverings when required, daily cleaning and sanitation across camps, washing hands thoroughly and frequently, and getting a flu shot when it becomes available.