As we conclude our first month of spring semester classes, we continue to be trending well in terms of COVID-19 cases. As of February 23rd, the 7-day positivity rate is at 0.54%. While we have seen low numbers to date, we also know from our peer institutions that outbreaks can happen quickly, so we must remain vigilant with respect to masking, physical distancing, gatherings outside of protocols, daily symptom checks and regular testing. To ensure we are being as safe as possible, current guidelines must remain in place for the time being, several of which are outlined in the updates below.
All members of the community who are on campus two or more times per week must test twice weekly. Resident students must test 2x per week with no more than four (4) days in between each test. Those coming to campus one time per week must test weekly. Not adhering to the required testing cadence will result in restricted status within CoVerified. Anyone who is unable to maintain this testing schedule should contact COVIDUpdates@emmanuel.edu to determine options.
While Commonwealth of Massachusetts guidelines allow for 40% capacity within restaurants, both the Marian Hall Dining Room and the Muddy River Café will remain at a 25% capacity through this week to support keeping the College’s COVID-19 cases low. There are to be no more than six (6) at any large table, and other areas are designated for two (2) and four (4) person capacities. Masks must be worn when within the dining facilities and when not actively eating or drinking.
Additionally, dining is prohibited on the second floor of the Yawkey Center, as well as on the first floor of the New Residence Hall. While we understand this is disappointing given other restrictions, these locations have been identified as areas where there is frequent non-compliance in terms of masking and physical distancing. This guideline will be reassessed in the next two weeks as we continue to monitor COVID-19 testing results.
As the weather improves this spring, there will be more options made available for outdoor dining areas. We appreciate our community’s understanding as we work to create the safest environment on campus.
When a snow storm arose earlier in the semester, the College proceeded with remote classes. However, for the remainder of the semester classes will be cancelled in the event of severe weather. Notifications of any decision to cancel classes will be sent via the RAVE system using text messaging, email and voicemail, as well as posted on social media channels, the website and local TV outlets.
As of last week, fitness centers on campus are open at a reduced capacity and with a number of guidelines in place. Please visit the Athletics website to learn about booking fitness center appointments and to read about health and safety protocols.
At the current time, the Gymnasium in the Yawkey Center is not available for open hours. The gym is only available for organized and supervised practices and training for student-athletes. Supervised student-athletes must practice physical distancing and wear masks at all times in the gymnasium.
Please continue to send your comments and questions to EmmanuelForward@emmanuel.edu. We thank you for your commitment to keeping our community safe and healthy.