Last week, we wrote to you about the many ways in which the University is putting science and ingenuity on the field in the fight against COVID-19 within our community, in the Charlottesville-Albemarle region and across the Commonwealth.
Today, we’d like to offer a few more details about how some of the things you’ve heard about recently are being incorporated into our testing strategy. The University’s new saliva testing program has already enabled us to perform more widespread testing of asymptomatic students, and we are working every day to expand its capacity. We are focusing on students living in UVA residence halls; we will screen all students living on-Grounds in the next couple of weeks. And we will also increase our asymptomatic prevalence testing of off-Grounds students. Using both saliva screening and tests from Let’s Get Checked, the same vendor we used for our student pre-arrival testing, we will identify groups of off-Grounds students for testing. We continue to offer asymptomatic testing for faculty and staff; these tests can be ordered through Let’s Get Checked.
We continue to offer testing to students, faculty, staff, and our Charlottesville neighbors who experience symptoms or who are close contacts of someone who tested positive.
Expanded testing at UVA and in the community will help us detect cases more effectively and respond quickly. We must be vigilant, though, in working to prevent the spread of the virus in the first place. That is what led to our decision to extend temporary restrictions on the size of gatherings, new requirements for mask usage, and continued limits on visitors and unnecessary travel for another two weeks.
As Dean Groves said in his message to students this week, we recognize how hard you are working to comply with these policies, and we are starting to see the benefits. We believe the combination of our growing capacity to detect the virus and our continued vigilance as a community has the potential to make a real difference in our ability to finish this semester together in the safest way possible.
This has been a difficult period in many ways, but watching members of this community come together and take care of each other has also been inspiring. Thank you for all you continue to do to make this semester a success.
Liz Magill Provost
J.J. Davis Chief Operating Officer
PUBLIC HEALTH MEASURES
Testing Appointments for Students
Students: be sure to monitor your email daily for messages from UVA Prevalence Testing (firstname.lastname@example.org) about mandatory COVID-19 testing and screening appointments.
Reminder: Hoos Health Check and COVIDWISE
Hoos Health Check: Everyone is required to use Hoos Health Check each day they come to Grounds. Have questions? Visit the FAQs.
COVIDWISE: Use your phone to fight COVID-19 by downloading COVIDWISE, the Virginia Department of Health’s exposure notification app.
New Resource: After COVID-19
Students who have left isolation and are recovering or have recovered from COVID-19 still need to follow all public health guidelines (wear a mask, physically distance, frequently wash hands, etc.). In addition, they now have unique health concerns and considerations. Please review the new Student Health and Wellness resource page, After COVID-19 for a helpful Q&A.
J-Term and Spring Registration Dates
Earlier this week, the Office of the University Registrar shared key dates with undergraduates, including:
Oct. 23 – enrollment appointments visible
Nov. 6 – classes visible in SIS
Week of Nov. 9 – J-Term enrollment begins
Week of Dec. 14 – Spring 2021 enrollment begins
One J-Term and one Summer Session I class are included with tuition this academic year, with certain restrictions. See the Registrar’s FAQ page for more information on J-Term eligibility.
RETURNING TO WORK ON GROUNDS
Childcare Survey and New Tools for UVA Parents and Guardians
The UVA Dual Career Program (DCP) has developed a short survey it is asking you to complete so the program can better understand your childcare experiences and challenges during the pandemic. The DCP is also launching a Parent/Guardian Connection Tool to connect UVA parents and guardians with one another to facilitate community, connection, and the exchange of information and supports.
Employee Flu Shot Update
The UVA flu shot clinic program is altered this year due to the pandemic, but employees and team members still have easy access to getting shots. See the HR flu shot webpage for details, including locations and cost coverage.
Open Enrollment Virtual Benefits Expo
The Benefits and Well-Being Expo for Open Enrollment will be held virtually this year due to social distance requirements and to keep you safe. The Expo will be held for a full two weeks during Open Enrollment from Oct 5-16. Learn more on the Virtual Benefits & Well-Being Expo webpage.
Safe and Fun Student Activities with IM-Rec Sports
Roll back the clock and play some fun classic games at IM-Rec Sports’ Simon Says and Red Light, Green Light Contest on Thursday, Oct. 15. Check out the IM-Rec website for details on fun programs throughout the fall term including a roommate obstacle course, zombie run, treasure hunt, and laser/ flashlight tag.
Intramural Registration and Outdoor Activities
Register now for Intramurals including sand volleyball, tennis, cornhole, Spikeball, soccer skills, and a Punt, Pass, Kick competition. IM-Rec is also the place to go for outdoor adventure, including trail and mountain hikes, boat rentals, and bouldering for beginners.