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Chancellor announces loose plans for fall semester 2021 in upbeat blog postThe Badger Herald

In a blog post today Chancellor Rebecca Blank announced loose plans for the fall semester of 2021 and said there were promising signs of a ‘fresh start’, such as vaccination clinics, low rates of infection and an in-person diploma.

According to UW COVID dashboard, the mean 7-day positivity rate fell to 0.1%, and 10,959 people received at least one dose of Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

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Almost all of the courses offered in-person in fall 2019 will revert to in-person instruction in fall 2021, and there will be more emphasis on integrating technology into an in-person learning experience. In addition, UW prepares for contingencies for international students who may have difficulty obtaining visas to return to the United States.

The dining rooms, academic and research resources will all be open and the residences will be fully occupied, depending on the position.

In an emailed statement, Madison Associate Student Press Office director Jacob Broehm said ASM is working with the university to make this transition, mainly with leaders on the Covid Planning Committee.

“These members then report back to us at meetings, ASM hearings and other events where they receive feedback from students and then report back to the committee,” Broehm said. “The ASM Campus Relations Committee has hosted two of these ASM hearings so far this semester to gather student feedback and answer questions. “

In the blog post, Chancellor Blank strongly urged all who are eligible to take advantage of the availability of vaccines, saying they are “the surest way to protect themselves and others.”

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Students who share their vaccination record with UW will be exempt from COVID-19 testing and their Badger badge will remain green, as of yesterday. Answers to general questions about vaccine eligibility for students and faculty can be found at UW News website.

Despite the hope of a vaccinated student body, Chancellor Blank said that while the next semester will look much more normal than this year, some vestiges of the COVID-19 era will remain.

For example, according to Broehm, masks may become commonplace.

“We wouldn’t be surprised if the wearing of the mask, for example, remains in place, however, we are not sure what other measures will be used in the next academic year as well,” Broehm said.

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According to the blog post, UW is preparing a set of principles and policy guidance that will inform the implementation of fair remote working practices in a post-COVID environment, although the details are not yet fully known.

Despite the many uncertainties, ASM and the Madison community should embrace a safe return to normalcy, according to Broehm.

“While we cannot determine if 2021-2022 will be more like previous years, we do hope and welcome the idea of ​​a return so that students can enjoy the full UW experience. But we stress that it needs to be done. in a safe manner and with student input, “said Broehm.” Students want a return to face-to-face teaching, badger games and other college events that are commonplace every other year. “

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