I am pleased to tell you that IUP will return to fully face-to-face instruction and in-person events and activities for fall 2022. In most circumstances, meetings and gatherings will transition to in-person formats, and employees will return to working at their university locations.

IUP will continue to follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control regarding masks/face coverings based on county transmission rates. (Currently, masks are not required for Allegheny, Armstrong, Indiana, or Jefferson counties.) The exception is that masks will continue to be required in the IUP Health Service. IUP supports the CDC recommendation to wear a mask if an individual has COVID-19 symptoms, a positive test, or exposure to someone with COVID-19.

However, while wearing a mask is not required in most cases, it remains the expectation that any visitors to individual offices or to residence hall suites and rooms must follow the preference of the people in those offices or living areas regarding use of masks. Every member of the university community should understand, support, and follow the request for masking in an individual’s personal space.

In addition, we will support and respect the individual personal choice to wear a mask or face covering. Anyone who prefers to use a mask is encouraged to do so. Free masks are available at most building entrances.

Student-athletes are to continue to follow the COVID-19 policy established by the NCAA and PSAC (Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference). Students at off-site experiences should follow the guidelines of their host institution.

If there is a shift in the pandemic in our communities and the CDC provides updated recommendations related to face coverings or other mitigation efforts, IUP policies will change accordingly. The well-being of the IUP community remains our priority and our guiding principle, and new decisions will be made as needed to keep us healthy and safe.

Free COVID-19 testing for students and vaccinations for students and employees will continue to be provided at the IUP Health Service. For students for whom self-isolation has been recommended due to a positive COVID-19 diagnosis, housing and care will be offered in Delaney Hall. CDC-recommended cleaning and sanitation procedures continue to be followed in our buildings. We will continue to monitor COVID-19 positive cases among students and will provide updates to the IUP community when needed. Updates and information will be posted on the COVID-19 Response Plan site.

I look forward to our Crimson Hawks community being together again in person. I believe that this provides the best possible experience for our students, and I am confident that, by working together, we can return to on-campus classes, events, and work while protecting the health and safety of our community.

Thank you for all of the work you have done to mitigate the transmission of COVID-19 in our community. Please continue to be vigilant, take care of yourself, and support and take care of one another.