Dear APU Staff and Faculty,
Congratulations on the completion of another academic year! I know it’s been particularly challenging during the pandemic, and I appreciate your ongoing commitment to the health of our community. It’s starting to feel like we are getting to the “new normal,” and I’m excited to be getting back to work on campus next week. I appreciate your patience as we have continued to review our policies and protocols in light of recent COVID-19 trends and public health guidance.
Our Campus Reopening Plan explains that we will still be following certain pandemic related protocols. Here are some of the highlights:
Telecommuting—As you know, we will be discontinuing general telecommuting starting May 2. If you have a continuing need for full or partial telecommuting because of a medical issue or other ongoing concerns, you should speak with your supervisor and fill out the attached telecommuting request form. We will review requests on a case-by-case basis. I recognize that some of us have enjoyed the flexibility of telecommuting, but it’s important that we get back to full staffing strength, recognizing that many staff members take vacation in the summer, too. We believe that the summer will allow us to implement and adjust our protocols as necessary before we have a full cohort of students in the fall.
Vaccinations/Testing—Members of the APU community are strongly encouraged to get fully vaccinated before coming to campus. At this point, we are not requiring vaccinations, but certain activities (e.g., the ExpAK Yukon trip) may require participants to be vaccinated. Following the most recent CDC guidance (4/27/21), you do not need to get tested if you have been fully vaccinated and exposed unless you have symptoms. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you should always get tested.
Masking and distancing—Masks will be required indoors in common spaces, but not in your personal offices. Masks are not required outdoors on campus unless you are in crowded gathering. Within your office spaces, please use your discretion as to whether you ask visitors to mask. Following recent public health guidance, we believe we can relax the 6-foot distancing requirement with appropriate masking; however, please be respectful of the requests of others to maintain physical distancing. We will be moving summer classes to larger classrooms and outdoor spaces.
We have notified our vendors, conferencing guests, and contractors about these protocols. We have received some questions about the contractors on campus who are working on earthquake repairs. They have been informed of our protocols and have been responsive when concerns have been raised. Given the nature of their work, their contract allows them to work without masks when they are not working in close proximity to others. If you have questions or concerns about the contractors, please contact Christina Borge (firstname.lastname@example.org).
We will all need the occasional reminder to wear our masks! Please feel free to ask anyone on campus to wear their mask or follow other protocols.
Badge Access—We will continue to require ID badges to access buildings, at least through the summer. Visitors to the campus should make arrangements with their hosts to get into the buildings.
Cleaning-We will be cleaning and disinfecting common spaces such as classrooms and gyms daily, if they are used. You are responsible for cleaning your personal workspace. If you need additional cleaning supplies, contact Christina Borge.
Reporting—If you test positive for COVID-19, notify the University at COVIDReports@alaskapacific.edu. If you are notified of a potential exposure to someone who has tested positive and you are not fully vaccinated, you should also notify the University at COVIDReports@alaskapacific.edu.
Our Campus Reopening Plan is a flexible document. We are monitoring COVID-19 and variant trends, community transmissions, and changes in local, state, and federal public health guidelines to make adjustments as necessary. If you have questions about the plan, check out the FAQs on the website and/or feel free to contact me or send a message to AskAPU@alaskapacific.edu.
Hilton Hallock, Ph.D.
Professor of Education
Alaska Pacific University