July 22 - To the Salve Regina community: Update on our fall plans

Dear Salve Regina community,

We hope that this email finds you well and that you are having a good summer. As we look forward to the fall semester, we are excited to welcome students back to a campus environment where they can fully engage in our signature University experience. In preparation for our opening, we would like to share some of our plans for the 2021-2022 academic year.

Although new COVID-19 variants continue to warrant attention, our vaccine requirement gives us confidence that our students will enjoy a robust living and learning experience this fall. As our students transition back to campus, we will continue to follow the latest recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Rhode Island Department of Health.

As always, our decisions will be driven by our dedication to maintain the health and vitality of our community, uphold academic integrity, preserve a quality mercy education and protect the transformative opportunities offered through a residential experience. We are also driven by our desire to be responsible members of the larger community of Newport.

Life on Campus

  • New students will move in Tuesday, Aug. 31 and Wednesday, Sept. 1, and returning students will move in Sunday, Sept. 5 and Monday, Sept. 6. Later this summer, the Office of Residence Life will provide a scheduling tool in MyHousing for students to choose a move-in date and time.
  • Residences, dining facilities and other campus spaces will return to more normal occupancies. Student activities, performances and special events will resume in person.
  • Student athletes will begin arriving on campus Aug. 11, when the football team returns. Guidelines for athletes are being developed in conjunction with the Commonwealth Coast Conference and details will be communicated as they become available.

Academics and the Classroom Experience

  • All undergraduate courses will be offered fully in person and our laboratories will return to more standard, hands-on operations.
  • As the centerpiece of Salve Regina’s academic life, our faculty will be back on campus to teach and advise our students in person.
  • Most class sizes and facility usage will revert to normal capacities.

Health and Safety

  • We will continue to offer quarantine and isolation housing for suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19.
  • Whenever possible and safe, students who test positive for COVID-19 will return home to their permanent residence for isolation and recuperation.
  • We will continue to follow best practices for ventilation, infection control, cleaning and disinfection.
  • Disinfecting wipe stations and cleaning supplies will be available in classrooms, office spaces and common areas across campus.

COVID-19 Testing

  • We have renewed our contract with the Broad Institute to provide asymptomatic and symptomatic PCR testing on campus.
  • As required by the Rhode Island Department of Health, members of our community who are not vaccinated will participate in regular surveillance testing. The rate of testing will vary and will be tied to community transmission rates.
  • Students who are fully vaccinated may also be required to participate in surveillance testing should rates of community transmission increase.
  • Symptomatic testing for undergraduate students will be available on weekdays. On weekends or when Health Services is closed, symptomatic students will be assessed by Safety and Security and referred or transported to off-campus testing sites.

We will continue to update you in the weeks ahead, usually on Tuesdays or Thursdays, and later this summer our Back to Salve website will be reimagined for the new academic year. As always, we encourage you to submit comments, questions or concerns to coronavirus@salve.edu.

We are grateful for the continued kindness and fortitude of our Salve Regina community as we approach a new academic year. We look forward to the fall semester, when we can once again come together and enjoy the experiences we cherish in our close-knit learning environment.