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August 31, 2021 | Campus Communication
For these past many months, we have “Banded Together” to battle a global pandemic that has impacted the social, academic and personal lives of all within our community. Because COVID-19 is not yet fully behind us, and although vaccinations have dramatically lowered the risk of infection, we must continue our efforts to protect all within our community…vaccinated as well as unvaccinated. While we are filled with the excitement of a new academic year, we will continue to do all we can to assure the safety and wellbeing of all within the Benedictine community.
Last week, on August 26, 2021, J.B. Pritzker, Governor of Illinois, announced a state mandate requiring all in higher education to become vaccinated by September 5, 2021. Per the terms of the Executive Order 2021-20, employees and students must receive the first dose of a two-dose vaccination series or a single-dose vaccination by September 5, 2021 in order to access our campus. The Second doses of the vaccine must be received within 30 days after the first dose. Individuals who are unable or unwilling to receive their first dose of vaccine by September 5, 2021, will be required to get tested for COVID-19 at least once per week. For Benedictine, the expectation is that all faculty, staff and students who are required to come to campus for her/his job, class or study, or other activity comply with Executive Order. Individuals who are unable or unwilling to receive their first dose of vaccine by September 5, 2021, will be required to get tested for COVID-19 at least once per week.
This Executive Order, according to Governor Pritzker, is “aimed at protecting the State’s most vulnerable residents and non-vaccinated children and their families, and the ability for hospital systems to handle the surge being created by the Delta variant.” You may view the Governor’s Executive Order 2021-20 at https://www.ben.edu/coronavirus/index.cfm.
In the coming days, as part of our efforts to implement best practices and remain informed as to vaccinations, masking, testing and tracking, we established and staffed a COVID Response and Resource Center which will craft and implement best practices for our path forward. You will receive details from the COVID Response & Resource Center about local vaccination options and COVID testing locations. Human Resources will provide additional details for staff, related to exclusions within the Governor’s Executive Order. Student Accommodations, as part of the Academic Support Center, will follow-up with additional information for students, as it relates to exclusions within Governor Pritzker’s Executive Order.
Charles W. Gregory
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