Dear Students and Families, As we prepare to welcome students back to campus in a few short days, I am writing to remind you of our collective commitment to keep ourselves and one another healthy and safe by adhering to…
Public Health Advisory: Update on Clusters Detected Last Week
Dear Students, Faculty, Staff and Families:
Last week, I shared with you that the Syracuse University Public Health Team detected two emerging clusters of COVID-19, both of which were attributable to off-campus events. Over the last several days and throughout the weekend, the Public Health Team conducted more than 3,000 COVID-19 tests and investigated more than 150 close contact cases, in an aggressive effort to identify, trace and isolate those who may have been exposed to the virus at these off-campus gatherings. Right now, we are cautiously optimistic that these clusters have been successfully contained, mitigating the potential for additional community spread.
While this is good news, it is not a reason to let our guard down. In fact, while the data indicates a decline in new cases associated with the cluster events of last weekend, at the same time we are seeing a modest increase in student and employee cases (compared to prior trends) that coincide with the increasing prevalence of COVID-19 infection across Central New York. For that reason, it is critical that all of us—students, faculty and staff—remain vigilant. The surge in new COVID-19 cases in Onondaga County and across Central New York is yet another new challenge that we must confront and overcome. We can do this, but only together. With three weeks left of residential instruction, here is what I ask of you:
- Get tested regularly. We will continue enhanced testing operations this week. Don’t wait to be asked or directed to the testing center.
- That said, if you receive a call from the Barnes Center or the COVID-19 Project Management Office requesting you get tested or participate in the contact tracing process, please do so with a sense of urgency.
- Stay in Central New York. Even then, if you travel locally and visit public places and spaces, be alert to unsafe conditions.
- Wear your mask—always!
- Do not host or attend parties or any unsafe gathering, on or off campus.
- Do not invite friends or family members to visit you.
- Participate in University-sponsored events. They’re fun, safe and a great opportunity to meet new and interact with current friends.
- Finally, get your flu shot by Friday, Nov. 6.
Our community has done a tremendous job this semester. We have asked a lot of every one of you, and you have responded to our high expectations with selflessness, maturity and a commitment to your health and the health of those around you.
Let’s keep it going: 23 days until the residential portion of this semester comes to a close. We can do it!
J. Michael Haynie
Vice Chancellor for Strategic Initiatives and Innovation