Note: This letter originally appeared as an email sent to the Homewood community on December 22, 2021.
Dear Homewood Students, Faculty, and Staff:
We hope you had a successful conclusion to the fall semester and that you will get a chance to rest during the holiday break. We are continuing our planning for our in-person spring semester, starting Jan. 24, and for normal research and other campus operations in the meantime.
To maintain that focus and prepare for the semester ahead, given the current increase in COVID cases related to the omicron variant, we are taking a few precautions, starting with yesterday’s announcement that booster vaccinations will be required for all eligible faculty, staff, students, and postgraduate fellows. In addition, we are limiting the number of undergraduates who return to campus before Jan. 18 and shifting most courses offered as part of Homewood undergraduates’ optional three-week Intersession term (Jan. 4 to Jan. 21) to a virtual format.
This step will not otherwise impact campus operations. In-person research and other work will continue according to existing protocols and schedules.
We will maintain limited exceptions for Intersession courses for which in-person experiences are required or vital for students’ majors. Undergraduate students will still be able to participate in on-campus research during Intersession, and Intersession study abroad program applications are being considered on a case-by-case basis.
Move-in to campus residence halls will be delayed until after Jan. 18 except for those students participating in an approved program. We are also strongly encouraging students who live off campus and are leaving the area for break not to return to Baltimore until after Jan. 18. Homewood Student Affairs will follow up with more information on housing for those who need to return to the residence halls before Jan. 18.
We continue to look forward to an in-person spring semester, and we remain confident that our suite of preventive measures, including vaccination, testing, masking, gathering limits, and enhanced ventilation, will enable us to do so safely. As always, your diligence in following public health guidance is critical.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, you have displayed admirable flexibility in meeting the ever-changing circumstances, and we thank you in advance for doing so again. We wish you a safe, healthy holiday break, and we look forward to seeing you again in the new year.
Vice Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
Vice Provost for Student Health & Well-Being
Interim Vice Provost for Student Affairs