It is a new semester and with that comes a new approach to the familiar COVID-19 virus. Waynesburg University’s Keep Waynesburg Well plan has laid out exactly what Waynesburg is doing to stop the spread of COVID-19 and its variants on campus. Stacy Brodak, vice president for Institutional Advancement and University Relations, when interviewed wanted to remind everyone that wearing a mask indoors is important. One of the main factors to the newly adapted policy was the availability of the COVID-19 Vaccine.
“The vaccine became available to our faculty, staff and students at the end of the spring semester,” Brodak said. “Coming into the fall, we knew that if someone wanted to be vaccinated to protect themselves or others, they had access and ability to do so. That helps us a great deal in creating a more flexible policy.”
She went on to explain that having a whole year to experience what worked and did not work with the previous KWW plan.
“We have said from the beginning we would constantly assess and adjust. We believe our students are pretty mindful of their own health and their potential to impact others,” Brodak said. “We also believe it is important to empower each of them to make good decisions to protect themselves and others. That said, we do still monitor federal guidance and that of our health partner in making recommendations for on campus guidance.”
The Keep Waynesburg Well Board’s biggest concern is students not being conscientious.
“The most important aspect of having a successful year is for each and every student to remain conscientious of their health daily and report if they feel they could be sick,” Brodak said. “Early detection is important. If students do not do so, sometimes for fear of quarantine, an outbreak could occur, thus altering our ability to continue with our current policies.”
In an email response, in a written statement, the Board expressed that other than masking and social distancing the CDC has plenty of other suggestions to follow.
According to the CDC, “The best way to slow the spread of COVID-19 and to prevent infection by Delta or other variants is to get vaccinated. COVID-19 vaccines protect people from getting infected and severely ill, and significantly reduce the likelihood of hospitalization and death.”
They went on to say that regardless of vaccination status, students should still be conscientious.
“Regardless of vaccination status, all individuals accessing campus should continue to monitor their health on a daily basis to protect themselves and others,”Brodak said. “We trust that each member of our community will ultimately accept responsibility for their own health and safety and will act in a manner that demonstrates respect and consideration for those around them.”
As always, any updates to the Keep Waynesburg Well plan can be seen on the Waynesburg University Website.