As we look ahead to the 2021-22 academic year, Illinois State University is planning for a more traditional campus experience and will offer as many face-to-face courses as possible. In addition, there will be more students living in on-campus housing, and participating in in-person activities, events, and out-of-classroom experiences.
We approach our planning with optimism based on news of the Biden-Harris administration’s commitment to significantly increase access to the coronavirus vaccine prior to the fall term, with 600 million doses expected by July 31. As a result, we strongly believe that our students, faculty, and staff will have the opportunity to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in advance of the fall semester. We will continue to monitor the progress of the vaccination roll-out in Illinois and throughout the country as we progress through the spring and summer months.
Our planning is informed by the many lessons learned over the course of the last year as well as the most recent public health guidance. As we know, information about COVID-19 has changed rapidly as we have moved throughout the pandemic. The University will continue to be flexible and ready to quickly modify plans if necessary. We will, of course, adhere to guidance provided by the Governor’s Office and local, state, and national health officials and anticipate that COVID-19 testing, face coverings, and physical distancing will remain best practices.
My sincere appreciation and thanks to our students, faculty, and staff who have worked tirelessly for the last year to provide a safe and healthy environment for our campus community. It has taken the unwavering commitment of the entire Redbird family to get us where we are today. Please continue to remain diligent in following all public health guidance and visit the Coronavirus website for the most up-to-date information about the University’s coronavirus response.