Dear members of the Virginia Tech community,
We are looking forward to a busy fall semester. While the threat of Covid-19 is changing and we have developed coping mechanisms and personal knowledge to mitigate its effects, the disease is still present in our society. We want to share an update on how we’re managing COVID-19 and what you can all do to help improve the student experience on campus and protect our community as a whole.
Like influenza and other common viruses and illnesses, Covid-19 is now one of many illnesses that university staff and students are routinely dealing with. We will continue to monitor and inform our community about available guidelines and resources, but we believe the time has come to stop the daily emergency management of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases. We will be proactive and update the community as needed and return to regular communication if necessary.
Please check the daily e-mail and — when necessary — the special e-mail sent to campus for updates. Please continue to follow public health guidelines and consider the health and safety of other hockey players.
Guidelines for all communities
- The University strongly encourages covid-19 vaccinations and boosters. Visit Vaccinate Virginia to find vaccination sites in the Commonwealth.
- Masks are always welcome anywhere at Virginia Tech, and the past few years have clearly shown that masks can significantly reduce the spread of airborne infections, including COVID-19. Masks are required at Shiffert Health Center.
- Do not go to work or meetings if you are sick. If you suspect Covid-19, get tested.
- The employee’s “voluntary trial” ends on August 26. Employees are encouraged to visit the VDH website to find free COVID-19 testing sites throughout Virginia. Kits are available through the US federal government and participating community libraries. Virginia Tech staff maintains a small inventory of test kits to meet unforeseen circumstances. For more information, employees can contact the HR Service Center.
- The university offers in-home rapid tests through the Shiffert Health Center.
- If you are advised that you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19, your next steps will depend on your vaccination status. Visit the VDH Isolation and Quarantine Calculator for information.
Instructions for employees
- You are no longer required to email email@example.com, or contact EHS case managers if you are positive or believe you have had close contact with someone who is positive. Virginia Tech will no longer provide case management services to staff or students or publish a COVID-19 dashboard; However, firstname.lastname@example.org will remain available during the fall semester for staffing questions.
- The Virginia Department of Health urges anyone who tests positive for Covid-19 to self-isolate for at least five days and to notify close contacts. Visit the VDH Isolation & Quarantine Calculator for more information.
- Do not attend work or events at Virginia Tech for at least five days or until you are sick. Follow the university’s sick time policies.
- Virginia does not offer Public Health Emergency Leave (PHEL). If you are abroad due to a covid-19 diagnosis, please use sick or other appropriate leave.
- If you feel able to work and your position allows you to work remotely, please coordinate with your supervisor, dean or chair as appropriate.
Instructions for students
- All residential students are strongly encouraged to complete an at-home Covid test before entering campus this fall.
- We recommend using the home antigen test 48-72 hours before we return for the fall semester.
- If your test result is negative, please try again on the day you travel to campus.
- If you test positive, please do the following
- We will no longer provide isolation/segregation housing, and we will not move students who are positive for Covid-19 from their classrooms. Therefore, it is important for all residential students to plan ahead with their families and roommate(s) in case they or their roommate(s) become infected with Covid-19.
Guidelines for teachers responding to student illness
- Virginia Tech students testing positive for Covid-19 must self-isolate and leave for at least five days. Visit VDH’s Isolation & Quarantine website for more information. Students must request a certificate of absence from the Dean of Students.
- Please accommodate students who need to be absent from class for short periods of time, such as other illnesses. If you have an external group of students, you can use it to record lectures and/or deliver other teaching content.
- It is important that faculty respect the medical privacy of students who have been diagnosed with, or are known to be close contacts of, COVID-19. Please do not share with the class that a student is in isolation or isolation, or offer testing or other recommendations based on that information.
- Resources are available to facilitate students’ academic activities in virtual environments. Visit Continuity in Teaching and Learning to learn more.
We have come a long way in understanding how to control the epidemic and how to care for the community. Thank you for your support and acceptance of the reality of the impact that Covid-19 is having on our campus. We are looking forward to a great semester.
Executive Vice President and Provost
Interim Senior Vice President and Chief Business Officer