Update: On-Campus Mask Mandate
March 1, 2022
On Sunday, February 27th, 2022, Governor Hochul announced that the statewide mask mandate would be lifted for P-12 schools and the decision to retain a mask mandate would fall to the individual school districts working in concert with their local public health departments. After consultation with our county public health offices, and thoughtful consideration and discussion internally, the College will lift the mask mandate for those who are on-campus, including students, faculty, staff and visitors, starting tomorrow, March 2nd, 2022. That said, we recognize the value of masking, and we will continue to encourage it. While there are positive signs including declining case rates in the region and the relatively high vaccination rates in the area, particularly on-campus, the virus remains active.
As we move away from a mandate, there are a few items we are encouraging you all to consider:
- we encourage all those who can to wear a mask when on-campus, particularly when in close proximity of others. We have members of our community, or their family members, who are at risk if they contracted COVID-19,
- wearing or not wearing a mask is an individual choice made without judgment by the college and its employees, and
- it is important that we remain respectful and appreciate the personal choices of our students, faculty and staff.
The change in the mask mandate does not impact other COVID-19 related measures. COVID-19 vaccination and booster requirements for any on-campus students remain in effect, and testing will continue for those who have been granted medical accommodations and will remain available for all students and employees who so desire. We continue to encourage a regular review of one’s health and if you have COVID-19 symptoms, to err on the side of caution, stay home and contact your health care provider.
Throughout this pandemic, we have trusted our community to navigate through it and help keep us safe. That trust continues. We know that some of our employees and students may be uncomfortable with this shift and may even have a heightened risk if exposed. As has been the case these past two years, guided by our values and our commitment to one another, together we will find our way.
Thank you, and take good care,