Thank you for a strong start to the fall semester! Our faculty, staff and administration have had August 24 circled on the calendar for months, as we all worked together to provide a safe and healthy environment for your on-campus instruction. I am encouraged by the way we are working together as a campus to support one another in what is a “new normal” both on- and off-campus.
A few COVID-19 notes as we continue to strengthen our efforts to prevent the spread of the virus while engaging in the Baylor experience:
- Wear your mask in ALL campus buildings at ALL times.* Also, face masks must be worn when you are outside and unable to social distance, or if you are in a group. And be sure to cover your nose with your mask.
- Check your COVID symptoms daily. If you do not feel well – even slightly – do NOT go to class. Faculty have been instructed to work with you regarding attendance. Contact Baylor Health Services at 254-710-1010 should you feel unwell or have questions about COVID-19 related symptoms.
- Follow Baylor rules off-campus as well as on-campus. Almost all positive COVID-19 cases we are experiencing come from activities and interactions among students who live off-campus. We are especially concerned with social gatherings that exceed the city restriction of no more than 10 individuals and interactions that do not follow protective health practices. It just takes one person who has COVID-19 to spread the virus among an entire group of people within social gatherings.
Just this weekend we received reports of two off-campus parties at residences near campus and have since learned that a student at one of these gatherings has tested positive for COVID-19. We strongly encourage anyone who was at one of these gatherings to immediately self-quarantine and seek testing through Baylor Health Services.
It is important for you to know that out of care for the entire University community, we will take swift disciplinary action to address incidents of misconduct related to COVID-19. Investigations since last weekend have resulted in several students being placed in an interim suspension status and the overall suspension of a student organization. I understand these actions may seem harsh, but there is too much at stake to let the actions of a few negatively impact the health and well-being of our entire campus.
Our continued success this fall depends on all of us practicing healthy, safe behaviors each and every day, including off-campus, in the evenings and on the weekends, and during church-related events and gatherings. Let’s all remember to keep Family First!
Vice President for Student Life
*Students living in a residence hall are not required to wear a face mask while in their own private rooms.