Moving from Orange to Yellow

Dear Staff and Faculty Colleagues:

With declining numbers of positive cases among students, we are pleased to notify you that the College is moving to Alert Level 2 (Yellow), effective today, Tuesday, Sept. 14.

This message includes critical information for staff and faculty, as we make this transition. The alert level document has been updated to reflect the details for Alert Level 2 (Yellow). In the brief email sent earlier today, we attached a detailed message that Victor Arcelus sent to students. Please review these communications carefully, as they will answer many of the questions you may have. (The town hall mentioned in our earlier email remains in the planning stages; details will follow.)

We would like to emphasize that Alert Level 2-Yellow is a transition stage. While various parts of the College will return to more normal operations, not everything will shift at once. Your continued patience is appreciated as we transition. Below are some of the highlights that you can find on the updated alert-level document that describes the details pertaining to Alert Level 2-Yellow. 

Return to In-Person Work

  • Staff who have been working remotely will transition to in-person. Supervisors will work with staff to coordinate work schedules and work plans to support staff returning to campus over the course of this week.
  • Academic classes will transition to in-person. This means that over the course of this week some faculty will be teaching in-person and some will continue to be remote with the goal of being fully in-person next week. Faculty should communicate with their students regarding the location of their classes.

Contact Tracing

While classes and meetings take place in spaces with low levels of concern for spread, which was reinforced in conversations with the Connecticut State Department of Public Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Dr. Anthony Fauci, we are considering ways of enhancing contact tracing for these spaces. More information on this topic will be shared later in the week.

Testing

  • Faculty and staff who have been testing off campus should resume on campus testing, if possible.
  • Whether you are on- or off-campus, please continue to conduct symptom screening through CoVerified.
  • Faculty and staff who wish to test twice a week may begin to do so. In that case, please contact Sarah Cardwell (scardwel@conncoll.edu) so that she can plan for additional activity at the testing center.    

Spaces

  • Gathering and study spaces: The library will extend its hours, and other spaces across campus will transition to being open for student use (e.g. campus centers, Walter Commons, Hale Center, and academic buildings).
  • Labs, studios, and other spaces will start to reopen during this transition period; departments will communicate with students accordingly. Departments, programs and centers should develop plans for reopening these spaces. 

Events and Trips

All events will take place outdoors unless special procedures are put in place. If there is a particular event, such as a field trip or other program that you are planning that would be limited by Alert Level 2-Yellow, please contact Victor Arcelus (860) 439-2825 so that options can be discussed.   

Please keep in mind as we move forward that we are all undergoing continued stress from this pandemic. As a community, we can use the tools at our disposal—vaccination, mask wearing and testing—to ensure a sustainable work environment.

We are mindful that adapting to in-person work is a challenge for many, and the recent disruption has set back many members of our community in acclimating to a return to campus. Please also remember that other colleagues have continued to successfully work safely at Conn. It is of the utmost importance that we try our best to communicate with one another and listen deeply, while also showing respect and empathy for the many losses and fears that have come into our lives because of the pandemic. Please know that we are all here to support each other and committed to making Connecticut College a positive workplace and learning environment.

If you have any questions or concerns, faculty can contact Jeff Cole (jcole1@conncoll.edu) or Anne Bernhard (aeber@conncoll.edu), and staff can contact Human Resources at (860) 439-2085.

Jeff Cole
Dean of the Faculty

Mary Keeney
Interim Vice President of Human Resources