Spring 2022 semester postponed and extended, COVID-19 protocols updated – The Vanderbilt Hustler

Undergraduates are now expected to return to campus a week later and stay an extra week for final exams. All students who have not received reminders will participate in weekly asymptomatic testing.

Alex Vénéro

A COVID-19 sign at Hawkins Field, pictured August 27, 2020 (Hustler Multimedia / Alex Venero)

UPDATE: This story was updated at 10 p.m. CDT to include information regarding the academic calendar and the 2022 Spring Semester extension.

UPDATE: This story was updated at 4:00 PM CDT to include information regarding the anticipated move-in and Pan-Hellenic recruitment schedule changes.

The start of the spring semester has been postponed by a week, from Jan. 10 to 17, due to the spread of the omicron variant, according to an email sent around 12:00 p.m. CDT from Chancellor Daniel Diermeier, rector and vice -Chancellor for Academic Affairs C. Cybele Raver and Vice-Chancellor for Administration Eric Kopstain. Since January 17th is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, classes will not be held until January 18th.

“University residences and Greek houses will open on Saturday January 15 and regular in-person classes will start on Tuesday January 18,” a follow-up email sent 40 minutes later by the vice-rector for student affairs and the dean. GL Black students and vice-president of academic affairs and dean of residential faculty Vanessa Beasley said.

A student accommodation form has been made available to students with extenuating circumstances that could require them to move in before January 15. Students can choose from three reasons that require moving in as of January 7: availability of domestic flights, international flights and internship / student teaching obligations. Students who move in early are subject to the Commodore Cares period rules.

Despite the schedule changes for the start of the semester, the email says the spring break (March 5-13) and start (May 13) dates remain unchanged. Although these dates remain unchanged, the semester has been extended; final exams were previously scheduled to take place from April 27 to May 5, but were pushed back to May 2 to May 9.

As the university continues to make decisions regarding COVID-19 policies for the spring 2022 semester, it encourages students to receive their booster shots and upload evidence to inform their decisions.

Improved COVID-19 protocols for the coming semester include an updated testing schedule, continued application of indoor masking, as well as a Commodores Cares period. During this period, which will last until at least January 24, students cannot “engage in in-person social interactions” with anyone other than their roommate (s). They are only allowed to leave their rooms to attend in-person classes, pick up food or supplies, see a doctor, and participate in outdoor activities without close contact.

“Campus Dining will operate in a ‘take out’ format during this time,” the second email read. “Students are encouraged to eat either outside, weather permitting, or in their residential space. Libraries and residential common areas will not be open during this period. “

In addition to the re-establishment of the Commodores Care period, all students will need to test negative for COVID-19 within 72 hours of returning to campus in order to move in.Additionally, effective January 18, unless students and employees have provided proof that they have received a recall or have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 90 days, they will be required to participate. asymptomatic tests.

“Those who register their boosters will be exempt from quarantine under new CDC guidelines and subject to fewer testing requirements,” the first email said.

Those who have not received a vaccine or booster will need to be tested twice a week, while those who have been vaccinated but not a booster will need to be tested once a week. Students who are fully immunized and have received a booster will be required to participate in the ongoing sentinel testing program.

“The sample size of the sentinel testing program will be assessed based on the number of individuals already in the required asymptomatic testing program,” state health and safety protocols. “If the number is relatively small, the sample size for the sentinel testing program may need to be larger.”

Students with symptoms are encouraged to visit the student health center and should shelter in place if not moved to quarantine accommodation while they wait for test results, as per guidelines. Symptomatic faculty, staff, and postdoctoral fellows should come to the Express Occupational Health Care Clinic for testing.

Changes have been made to pan-Hellenic recruiting, which was originally scheduled to begin Jan.8 and take place in person, according to an email from Greek Life deputy director Destiny Savage. The orientation and three of the four rounds will now be virtual, with a provisional final round in person and an application day.

There will be a town hall for undergraduates on January 11 at 5 p.m. CDT that will provide more information and include a question-and-answer section. Those interested in participating should register and submit their questions in advance. Black and the Vice-Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, André L. Churchwell, are on the panel.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.