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A Message from President Paul Katz

Dear Faculty and Staff, 

I hope that you have had a good and restful summer and are ready for the start of the new academic year and the fall semester. 

As this next chapter opens on August 31, we must adjust to the new normal. But one thing that hasn’t changed is our pioneering spirit to forge ahead and help to mold the healthcare and science leaders of tomorrow. 

As I shared with you last March, we continue to hold true to our primary objectives: the health and safety of our University community and to continue the commitment to our University’s mission to offer an excellent education to our students. Our community has faced many challenges in the past 200 years, but I am encouraged by the flexibility, fortitude, and fidelity I’ve seen during this trying time.   

The COVID-19 Task Force, which comprises more than 30 representatives from throughout campus, has been hard at work to prepare the campus for the start of the semester and beyond. Their work includes the creation of safety plans for all on-campus operations which are detailed in the Return to Campus Guidelines as well as contingency planning. I know that there is a lot of detail in these pages, however, I encourage you to carefully review these guidelines as they are important to ensure that we can continue to safely continue our on-campus activities. Similarly, the weekly message from the COVID-19 Task Force is packed with valuable and current information. We will share more information about the plans at our upcoming Faculty and Staff Town Hall on Wednesday, August 19 at 3 p.m. 

These campus safety measures - including signage, increased cleaning procedures, and occupancy limits - are consistent with state and local regulations as well as guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The timeline for signage placement, plexiglass deployment, and much more is Included in last Thursday’s Task Force message. My sincerest thanks to the Task Force and the many others who have been working diligently to prepare the campus for our safe return.

As a reminder you are asked to:

  • Conduct a daily health check before coming to campus. This includes taking your temperature and monitoring symptoms. 
  • Wear a mask everywhere on campus, both indoors and outdoors.
  • Keep your distance: stay six feet from others, even if you are outdoors or wearing a mask. 
  • Practice good hygiene: wash your hands with soap and water, use hand sanitizer when hand washing isn’t available, avoid touching your face, and disinfect frequently touched surfaces. 

We are all responsible for the health and safety of one another during this time. 

Stay Strong. Stay Safe. Stay Connected. 


Paul Katz, MD