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Messages and Advisories

COVID-19 updates shared with the UHart community

Current communications that have been shared with University of Hartford students, faculty, staff, parents, and alumni are listed below in chronological order. The most recent communications will be added to the top of this list as they become available. 

Most Recent Update to the Campus Community

Dear Students,

Our partners from Hartford HealthCare will be administering COVID-19 booster shots and the flu vaccine on campus on Nov. 15 and 16. Both vaccines are available free of charge.

The booster is not required at this time, but the CDC recommends it for anyone who lives or works in “congregate” settings, including college campuses.

You are eligible for a COVID-19 booster if you:

  • received your second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine at least six months ago (no later than May 31, 2021)
    OR
  • received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine at least two months ago (no later than Sept. 15, 2021)

Clinic Details

1–4 p.m., Nov. 15 and 16, Konover Campus Center

Moderna and Pfizer vaccines will be available. You can choose which vaccine to receive; it does not have to be the same brand as your original series.

How to Register

Registration is required for the COVID-19 booster. Space is limited, so please register as soon as you are able.

Pfizer: register here.
Moderna: register here.

Registration is not required for the flu shot.

More Information

Please bring you insurance card, your vaccine card, and identification when you check in at the clinic. You will have your temperature taken at the door. Please plan to wait 15 minutes for observation following your COVID-19 booster vaccine.
 
If you have any questions, please email covid19@hartford.edu.

Thank you.
COVID-19 Planning Group

Messages in Chronological Order

October Updates

Dear Students,

Despite this week’s warm temperatures, we will soon enter the colder months—and flu season. We want to provide you with some essential information about the flu, COVID-19, and other illnesses, including steps to take if you feel ill and what to do if you are too sick to go to class. We also have reminders about our mask policy and this semester’s academic schedule.

If You Do Not Feel Well

Health Services, run by our clinical team from Hartford HealthCare, is here to help! The office, located on the ground floor of the Sports Center with its own entrance on the left side of the building, is open Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m., and can be reached at 860.768.6601.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 or symptoms of the flu (fever, chills, body aches, runny/nose, sore throat, cough and fatigue), please fill out the LiveSafe Health Screening as soon as possible. Health Services will take the next steps to provide you with instructions for medical care. If you go to Health Services with flu or COVID-19 symptoms, our clinicians will test you for both illnesses.

If you have symptoms of another illness, please contact Health Services.

If You Have to Miss Class

  • If you test positive for COVID-19, our COVID-19 Response Team will notify your professors.
  • If you are diagnosed with any other medical condition that requires you to miss class, a medical provider will give you a note saying you were seen and evaluated at Health Services and that due to medical reasons, you will need to miss or have already missed classes.

If Health Services determines you must miss class for health reasons, it is up to you and your professor to make a plan for asynchronous or synchronous learning, based on the class.

If you come to Health Services after your illness, and are no longer symptomatic, Health Services will not excuse you from class. Please do not go to Health Services to get “a note” for missed classes or assignments. We rely on our clinical providers to determine whether you need to stay out of classes.

Getting a Flu Shot

We encourage everyone in our UHart community to get a flu shot. Please contact Health Services at 860.768.6601 if you are interested in getting the flu vaccine on campus.

Masks

If we want to continue to enjoy social activities and the freedoms that come with low COVID-19 cases, masks remain essential for now.

You must wear your mask over your nose and mouth anytime you are in the classroom, library, Sports Center, dining facilities (when not eating), and any other indoor location. Masks are not required outside, in your own personal living space, or while eating in a dining facility.

Academic Schedule

This year, health conditions are allowing us to continue with in-person classes between Thanksgiving recess and Winter Break. As indicated in the Academic Calendar, Thanksgiving Recess begins on Nov. 20, with classes resuming on Nov. 29. Finals end on Dec. 14 and residence halls close for the semester on Dec. 15.

Resources

We are here to support you!

COVID-19 Questions: Please email covid19@hartford.edu.
General Health Questions: Please call Health Services at 860.768.6601.
Academic Concerns: Please call the Dean of Students Office at 860.768.4260.  

Sincerely,

Jessica Nicklin, Associate Vice President for Student Success
Suzanne McNeil, Assistant Vice President for Student Success

September Updates

Dear Students,

Now that classes and campus life are in full swing, we have a few important updates and reminders to share about the University’s response to COVID-19.

Key Reminders

If You Are Diagnosed with or Exposed to COVID-19

You must report this information to the University by completing the LiveSafe Health Screening, even if you are vaccinated. This will enable our contact tracing team to begin its important work, and will give our medical team the opportunity to reach out to you to see how you are feeling and to advise you on next steps. Participating in contact tracing is mandatory for all UHart community members.

Learn more about our contact tracing process. 

If You Develop Symptoms

Complete the LiveSafe Health Screening or call Health Services at 860.768.6601 to connect with our medical team. If it is after hours, please call Hartford HealthCare–GoHealth Urgent Care at 860.200.7701.

Tracking COVID Cases

UHart’s COVID-19 dashboard is a source of information for members of our community to stay updated on the most accurate data related to our campus. Information will be updated each Tuesday.

STAYING VIGILANT

At this time, we have no evidence that COVID-19 is spreading in classrooms. Our current data suggests cases are typically coming from off-campus exposures. A college in our area recently pivoted to remote learning and canceled all campus activities due to a high number of cases. We don’t say this to scare you. We use it as a reminder that we must all continue to keep our guards up by wearing masks and avoiding large parties, crowded restaurants and bars, and other risky behavior. Please continue to follow all health and safety protocols in order to preserve the in-class experience, in-person dining and activities, and freedom in the residence halls.

Thank you for all you have done so far to protect yourself and others. If you have any questions, please email COVID19@hartford.edu.

Thank you.

Aaron Isaacs
Dean of Students
 
Jessica Nicklin
Associate VP for Student Success
 

August Updates

Dear Students,

I hope this message finds you well and healthy as we get ready to kick off the fall 2021 semester!

My colleagues and I are beyond excited to welcome you back to campus and are eager to see our community come alive again with your energy this fall. This year, we are looking forward to resuming a more normal in-person experience. That means familiar traditions like Hawktober Weekend will return, and newly created ones like Food Truck Fridays will continue. Student clubs and organizations will resume their indoor and outdoor activities, approved guests will be allowed in the residential halls, and students will be able to engage in activities on and off campus. All signs point toward an incredible year. Staff and faculty have worked diligently over the summer to prepare a safe campus for you to learn, grow, and thrive.

As we forge ahead into this new semester, we must not forget the lessons we learned from this past year that brought us together and kept us safe as a community. We must continue to be vigilant about our own and each other’s health and well-being, remain patient as we deal with the lingering difficulties of the pandemic, and allow each other the space and grace to process and address the ongoing challenges of social inequality. Our ability to have another successful year hinges upon a renewal of our shared sense of responsibility.

Part of this shared responsibility will be following our updated rules, policies, and expectations. We also ask you to read all COVID-related policies and guidelines. These policies are necessary for the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff, families, and the larger community. Let me take this opportunity to highlight some of the key policy updates and changes.

As you know, the University is requiring all students, staff, and faculty to be vaccinated or receive an approved exemption. Regardless of vaccination status, everyone is required to wear masks indoors. Students with approved exemptions are required to participate in regular testing; failure to comply with this requirement may result in students being sent home.

Students will be allowed to have guests in their rooms. However, guests must be current UHart students. The number of students in a room must not exceed the posted room occupancy requirements outlined in our COVID-related policies. Residents are responsible for the actions of any guests in their housing unit and building. We will revisit this policy after the first four weeks of the semester.

With a majority of our campus being vaccinated, we will be scaling back our isolation, quarantine, and contact tracing procedures. Students who test positive or need to quarantine will be asked to go home to complete their quarantine. If students are unable to go home, there is limited space on campus. Those accommodations will not mirror the amenities (on-call concierge services, a la carte meal delivery, linen and laundry services etc.) provided last semester, but will cover basic living needs. Students will be required to pack enough clothes, toiletries, linens, and other essential items for the duration of their quarantine/isolation. During isolation/quarantine, it is the responsibility of students to work with their faculty members to complete their assignments either synchronously or asynchronously.

I will be as transparent as possible; students found responsible for violating the University’s COVID-19-related policies may be removed from campus and may not receive a refund for room and board. The health and safety of our campus will continue to be the priority.

Everyone will have to be intentional and thoughtful about the choices we make each and every day. It is my sincere hope that you and all members of the University community will make decisions and take actions only with each other’s health and safety at the forefront.

I know you all will rise to the challenge of keeping each other and our UHart community safe. Let’s continue to truly keep all hawks healthy.

Be well, stay healthy, and Go HAWKS!

Aaron Isaacs
Dean of Students

Dear Students,

As part of our ongoing efforts to protect the campus community, we are following new CDC guidance and, at this time, are requiring masks to be worn indoors, regardless of vaccination status. The CDC’s recommendations cover areas of high COVID transmission, and our region fits that criteria. Masks are not required outside, in your own personal living space, or while eating in a dining facility. See full policy on face coverings.

We know this news is disappointing to some and it is our hope this is a temporary requirement. Over the past few weeks, it has become clear that the Delta variant is much more contagious than other variants. While rare, infections can occur in vaccinated individuals, who can then spread the virus to others. Masks offer an additional layer of protection. We will continue to monitor CDC guidance and local transmission levels with local health agencies and our health-care partners.

Vaccination is still the most effective way of protecting ourselves from serious cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. Vaccinated individuals represent a very small percentage of transmissions occurring around the country, and the vast majority of those cases are mild. For these reasons, we have announced to our employees that they, like our students, are required to be vaccinated by Aug. 15.

As a reminder, all students who have not already received an approved exemption must submit proof of vaccination via the Student Health Portal by Aug. 15. Please visit our Vaccination Information web page for complete instructions. If you have only taken the first dose of a two-dose sequence, and will have not completed the second dose by Aug. 15, please fill out this survey if you have not already done so. This will allow us to work with you on completing the vaccine sequence. Students, please also remember to bring your physical vaccine cards with you to campus this fall.

Do you still have questions about the vaccine? Please join us this evening (Monday, Aug. 9) at 7 p.m. for a “Conversation about COVID, Vaccines, and a Return to a Safer Campus Community. See UNotes for more information. If you have any other questions, please contact COVID19@hartford.edu

Thank you for all of your cooperation in keeping our campus safe.

COVID-19 Planning Group

July Updates

Dear Students,

We are excited to welcome you to campus in less than one month! Our vaccine requirement, combined with our current health conditions in Connecticut, are allowing us to move forward with our plans for a more typical on-campus experience this fall. Below are some of the protocols that will be in place beginning Aug. 15. As always, we will continue to work with our healthcare partners and local health agencies, and follow evolving guidance from the CDC.

Masks

We are reviewing the CDC’s recommendation for indoor masking in areas with high rates of transmission to determine the potential impact on our campus community. We will share our updated mask policy as soon as possible.

Testing

Currently, there is no pre-arrival or weekly testing requirement for students who are vaccinated, but that could change based on health conditions closer to the start of the semester. We recommend that you take a photo of your vaccine card or have it with you when coming to campus to verify during move-in.

All students who have a medical or religious exemption from the COVID-19 vaccine requirement must provide a pre-arrival PCR test (taken with 72 hours of arrival on campus) and must be tested each week for COVID-19 as a precaution in lieu of the vaccine. More details of this process will be shared with these students soon.

Course Formats

We are returning to in-person classes as our primary mode of instruction. As with other semesters, there are certain classes being offered as ­­­­­­online and remote classes depending on the program of study. Course formats are specified in the course catalog.

Health Monitoring

We will again be using the Daily Health Screening in LiveSafe to monitor the health of our community and to assist with contact tracing. Daily check-ins are required for visitors, guests, and unvaccinated members of our community. If you are vaccinated and feel ill or test positive for COVID-19, you should also complete the check-in process and a member of our health team will reach out to you.

Visitors and Guests

Residential Spaces

This semester, residential students will be allowed to have guests in their spaces. These guests must be University of Hartford students and the number of people in a space cannot exceed the capacity limit of that space. Specific information on those numbers will be shared closer to move-in. At this time, residential students may not have external guests in residential spaces. This will be revisited later in the semester depending on current health conditions.

Campus Visitors

Family members of residential students may visit campus but we ask you remain outdoors as much as possible as we begin the semester. If guests must enter campus buildings (restrooms, bookstore, etc.), we request they wear a mask. Food delivery, rideshare, and taxi drivers; vendors hired by the University; and prospective students and their families will also be allowed on campus. Visitors must wear a mask indoors and complete the LiveSafe app.

Events

With very few exceptions, on-campus events will be limited to members of the University community for at least the first four weeks of the semester. At the end of that time period, we will review current health conditions on campus and in the surrounding community to determine whether we can open events to others.

Vaccine Requirement

As a reminder, all students who have not already received medical or religious exemptions must be fully vaccinated by Aug. 15 to come to campus for the fall semester. Log on to the Student Health Portal to submit your documentation. If you are not yet fully vaccinated, please complete this brief survey. We will follow up with you to discuss any specific needs or concerns directly.

We are confident that by working together, we can keep our campus community safe while enjoying a more “normal” semester. We will continue to monitor public health conditions and will share more information over the coming weeks via email and our Healthy Hawks website. If you have any questions, please email COVID19@hartford.edu.

Thank you and we look forward to seeing you soon.
COVID-19 Planning Group

June Updates

Dear Students,

We write today with an update on our COVID-19 safety planning for the fall. As always, our main goal is to protect the health of our community by following the recommendations of the CDC, local health departments, and our health-care partners. For this reason, the University of Hartford will require all students to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Aug. 15, 2021.

Having a fully vaccinated student body will a give us the best chance to return to a more typical college experience, with in-person services and activities, and fewer restrictions in the residential neighborhoods and in the classroom. Science continues to show that the vaccine is safe, effective, and the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19. As vaccines have become more widely available, infection rates have dropped. In Connecticut, the daily positivity rate is less than one percent.

Following our current policies for all required vaccines, limited exemptions may be granted for medical and religious reasons. For more information on this process, please visit our website. The deadline for applying for an exemption is July 15, 2021.

Updating Your Vaccine Information

Once you are fully vaccinated (with either one dose of Johnson and Johnson or two doses of Pfizer or Moderna), please log on to the UHart Health Portal using your UHart email credentials and:

  • Click “My Forms”
  • Click on “COVID-19 Vaccine”
  • Enter the dates of any vaccinations you have received
  • Upload an image of your CDC Vaccination Card

Learn More About the Vaccine 

We understand you may have questions about the vaccines. You can find more information and answers to frequently asked questions on our website. We are also offering the following workshops to share information and address concerns you may have. Students and families are invited to register online if interested in attending.

A Conversation About Vaccine Hesitancy: This pre-recorded town hall, which you can access on YouTube, addresses myths and misconceptions about the vaccine.

Vaccine Access: Wednesday, June 30, at 8 p.m. via Zoom. This presentation is intended for anyone who is ready and willing to get the vaccine, but needs help getting started. The panel will review steps to get the vaccine, transportation or access issues, financial concerns, etc.

Heath-Related Questions and Concerns: Thursday, July 1, at 8 p.m. via Zoom. This presentation will address some common health and safety concerns regarding the COVID vaccine.
 
Please email COVID19@hartford.edu with any additional questions.
 
As we proved over the past year, when we work together, we can maintain a safe and excellent student-centered educational experience. Thank you for your cooperation and for all you do to protect our community.
 
Sincerely,

COVID-19 Planning Group