Update on Fall 2021 Vaccination Plans
May 13, 2021
Dear Xavier students,
Now that we have completed the spring semester and move into the summer, I want to provide an update on plans for the fall semester, including the COVID vaccine.
As you have already heard, Xavier plans to maximize in-person instruction and activities this fall and return to as normal an environment as possible. We are simply better in person. We proved that we could hold classes and live on campus during this academic year. Of course, we will continue to follow appropriate safety protocols with our aspiration to return to our cherished Xavier experience as quickly as possible.
Xavier has successfully managed the challenges that have come with the pandemic, and we will continue to meet the challenges before us as we always do – together. TriHealth has been an incredible partner, and their medical expertise and guidance have been critical factors in our community’s success. And the COVID-19 Task Force that has been meeting daily since the start of the pandemic continues to engage our community and monitor changing health guidance from the CDC, ODH, and local health officials.
Looking ahead to the fall semester, Xavier University is strongly encouraging students and employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. All approved vaccines have been proven safe and effective, and vaccine appointments are readily available near Xavier’s campus. Full FDA approval of the vaccine or additional guidance from the CDC or the state of Ohio may cause the University to decide to require the vaccine, so please get vaccinated now. The more vaccinated our community is, the better position we will be in this fall.
We know that we have seen strong adoption of the vaccine since the majority of our undergraduate community became eligible to receive a vaccine in Ohio on March 29. This includes numerous clinics hosted in Cintas Center and, in collaboration with the governor and Kroger, a vaccine clinic specifically for Xavier students on April 7. Xavier’s final COVID Dashboard highlights that our community’s total positive active cases ended at their lowest levels of the entire academic year. Vaccinations, combined with Xavier’s health and safety protocols, have helped keep our community safe.
In addition to the personal protection provided by the vaccine, Xavier joins with other Catholic organizations to promote vaccination as an act of charity and solidarity with others that will help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and build immunity against the virus. TriHealth has helpful COVID-19 vaccine FAQs to address common questions or hesitations about the vaccine, and all Xavier community members are encouraged to reach out to their medical provider with specific questions or concerns.
While I like to think that the personal and communal benefits of the vaccine are a strong incentive, how about an additional offer? Students who upload their vaccination record to Med+Proctor (Xavier's system for managing immunization records and compliance) by June 1 will be entered into a special drawing for prizes that include:
- A $2,500 grant to apply toward the cost of attendance
- A suite for you and friends to a men’s basketball game next season
- A special shopping trip to the All For One Shop for the latest Xavier gear
- Apple AirPods Pro
Additional raffles are planned this summer to allow newly vaccinated students to upload their vaccination records and be eligible to win prizes, so act now to get the vaccine.
These Med+Proctor records will help the Task Force and Xavier leadership understand vaccination rates in our community. It will also allow fully vaccinated students to likely avoid future quarantine if identified as a close contact and to be exempt from surveillance testing in the fall.
Xavier is reviewing what we’ve learned from managing COVID in our community during the last academic year, along with guidance from health partners, to make data-informed decisions. Vaccination data will help determine health and safety guidance for the Xavier community.
While it has been a difficult year, I would like to offer my sincere thanks to our students, faculty, and staff for your commitment to one another. Our All For One spirit has never been more evident.
I’m sure I reflect the sentiment of the Xavier community in looking forward to a more normal academic year beginning this fall.
As always, you and those you love most are in my prayers.
Michael J. Graham, S.J.
President, Xavier University