We are so excited to welcome everyone back to campus. After months of planning and anticipation, and even some understandable stress on all of us, we are ready to go.
As you know, this is not a normal year. As we work to keep health and safety of our whole community front and center, we want to make sure you are aware of an update to our Code of Conduct.
Undoubtedly you have, by now, seen news of other colleges and universities having to shut down shortly after welcoming students back. One of the main reasons for those rollbacks has been students engaging in large parties, which then led to outbreaks of COVID-19 in their campus communities. It’s painfully clear we need to change how we socialize in the age of COVID.
It’s OK to gather in small groups, preferably outdoors, distanced and masked. However, no social gatherings of more than 10 people are permitted at any time, on or off-campus.
Larger gatherings, where lots of people are in close quarters and unmasked, are proving to be the major driver of outbreaks on other campuses. Partygoers spread virus to not just other partygoers—their roommates, podmates, classmates, and others on campus are put at risk. It is this spread that leads to schools quickly reverting to online-only instruction, and to sending students home. No one wants such an outcome here at WPI.
For the safety and welfare of our whole campus community – and to help ensure we can stay open – we really need students to step up and do their part.
Over the past several months, we have had conversations with students about how to best address issues associated with lack of compliance with testing and off-campus parties. Based upon that input, we now have specific rules associated with the COVID-19 pandemic:
- The 2020 – 2021 Student Code of Conduct is posted on the Dean of Students website.
- Of particular importance is the WPI Student Code of Conduct COVID-19 Addendum, which specifically addresses our campus Testing Protocols and Off-Campus Parties.
NOTE: Students violating these policies will immediately move to on-line classes and lose the ability to be on-campus for the fall semester.
We know that WPI students are naturally good people. Now, more than ever, we are counting on each of you to stay true to our values – and our Code of Conduct - so that we can help keep our community healthy and together.
Thank you, and best of luck in the new academic year!
Gregory Snoddy, Ed.D.
Assistant Vice President