UD Winter Session requirements for return to campus
December 30, 2021
A message to the University of Delaware community
Since the beginning of the pandemic almost two years ago, the University of Delaware has prioritized the health and safety of the University community. As the highly transmissible Omicron variant surges across the nation and COVID-19 positive cases and hospitalizations are soaring to unprecedented, record levels, we consulted with medical and public health experts on how to best address the emerging situation. Accordingly, and in keeping with the state of emergency announced by Delaware Gov. John Carney today, we are taking some necessary measures to continue to protect the academic continuity of our students while simultaneously striving to minimize the spread of COVID-19 for Winter Session 2022.
All Winter Session classes will commence on Jan. 3, as scheduled. However, to ensure that all students, faculty and staff who will be on campus during Winter Session have been tested at a UD testing site the first week of January, the majority of Winter Session classes will shift to an online format for the first week. Although classes will be virtual during this period, residence halls will reopen for Winter Session on schedule from noon-6 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 2.
At the conclusion of the first week of classes, the situation on campus will be re-evaluated with the intent to revert to in-person learning as soon as it is safe to do so.
In addition, while the previously announced deadline for students to receive a booster shot is Jan. 24, 2022, everyone, including all faculty and staff, is encouraged to get the booster as soon as possible.
Additional details on measures effective immediately follow:
All students, faculty and staff who will be on the campus during Winter Session, regardless of vaccination status, will be required to complete surveillance testing at UD testing sites during the week of Jan. 3, 2022. This pertains to all members of the UD community who are accessing any UD facility at any time during Winter Session. From Jan. 3 through Jan. 6, surveillance testing will be available Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. at Harker ISE Lab and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Pencader Hall. Please register in advance at the following links:
To maximize testing opportunities for everyone in the UD community, those unable to test at Harker or Pencader may schedule a testing appointment at the Student Health Services Annex, located just south of Laurel Hall, from 2 to 7 p.m., Monday through Wednesday, Jan. 3-5. Register for a testing appointment at the SHS Annex by visiting the UD Health Portal and selecting “Schedule an appointment.”
Students, faculty and staff at the Wilmington, Georgetown, Dover or Lewes campus locations may schedule a test at the sites noted above or submit results from a community PCR test or home PCR test to the UD Health Portal during the week of Jan. 3 (note: results generated from rapid tests are not acceptable).
If you have tested positive for COVID within the past 30 days and have submitted your positive test results to the UD Health Portal, you will be exempt from the Return to Campus testing requirement.
Grab and Go Dining
Dining Services will move to a grab-and-go only model in the Pencader and Russell dining halls, as well as in the dining areas in the Perkins Student Center and the Trabant University Center.
Remote work will continue for those offices where in-person interaction is not required. Units that were considering moving to a more hybrid model early in 2022 have been asked to pause those plans for now. Staff with questions should contact their supervisors.
Vaccination and Booster
As was announced Dec. 16, all eligible students without an existing COVID-19 vaccine exemption are required to be vaccinated with a booster shot by Jan. 24, 2022. We continue to strongly encourage all employees to be vaccinated and, when eligible, to get the booster shot as soon as possible. For those needing a COVID-19 booster shot, several booster clinics are scheduled in the coming weeks at the Pencader Dining Hall. Booster shots are also readily available at many area pharmacies.
Mandatory Masking in All Shared Spaces
Wearing a mask remains an important way that each of us can limit the spread of the coronavirus, and mask enforcement will continue to be emphasized in campus spaces, as well as in residence halls, except in student rooms. Regardless of vaccination status, all students, faculty and staff will be required to wear masks in all settings, including research laboratories. Given the high transmissibility of the Omicron coronavirus variant, UD requires a well-fitted mask worn properly in accordance with mask instructions.
More information including answers to frequently asked questions is available at udel.edu/coronavirus.
It is essential that every member of the UD community remain vigilant against COVID-19 by taking the necessary steps to mitigate its spread. In the coming week, the University will continue to closely monitor the situation on campus, as well as any new recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), federal and state officials and other experts.
Thank you for protecting yourself and others, while also encouraging your friends and colleagues to do the same.