COVID-19 Information

Follow-up: COVID-19 Important Campus Update

From: Dean Alexis Abramson
Date: August 5, 2021

Dear Thayer community,

Earlier today, Dartmouth reinstated indoor masking requirements for all members of our community, regardless of vaccination status. This is a necessary precaution for our continued health and well-being and to prevent further spread of COVID-19, particularly in light of the new delta variant. I wanted to follow-up with additional clarification for our students, faculty, and staff, who may have Thayer-specific questions.

Per the most recent Dartmouth policy, all faculty, staff, and students must wear masks when using or accessing shared or communal indoor spaces in any Dartmouth building or work site, including Thayer spaces on the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Lebanon campus. This includes hallways, public corridors, bathrooms, as well as any lab, classroom, conference rooms, or workspaces shared by more than one person. Masking is not required outdoors or in private, non-shared spaces, such as your office, or while you are actively eating or drinking. If you are in need of a mask, free masks are available from the Thayer Instrument Room.

With summer classes ongoing until August 25 followed by the final exam period, we recognize the reinstated indoor mask requirement may impact in-person classroom instruction, labs, and project gatherings. Throughout the Spring term, many faculty, students, and staff at Thayer successfully navigated mask-wearing while teaching, learning, studying, or working together, and I have great faith that we can continue many in-person components that we have enjoyed throughout the summer, even under the reinstated policy. Faculty who wish to request a microphone to help you project or have questions about a microphone set-up in your classroom, please contact computing@thayer.dartmouth.edu for support.

As of now, other than the reinstated indoor mask mandate, Dartmouth’s COVID-19 policies and Thayer's alternative work arrangement plans for members of our staff remain unchanged. Dartmouth continues to monitor COVID-19 state and federal guidelines closely and we will keep the community informed of additional changes to policy and guidance as necessary.

Currently at Thayer, a number of safety measures continue to be in place. HEPA filters remain in under-ventilated areas of our buildings, with MERV-13 filters in all air handling units. Plexiglass remains in service-oriented areas and can be installed or removed upon request. Thayer’s COVID-19 operations team continues to meet weekly to assess Thayer-specific needs and concerns.

Faculty and staff with questions or concerns should contact Thayer CFAO Tricia Spellman. Undergraduates should reach out to your undergraduate dean with questions or concerns. Graduate students, including BE students, should reach out to Assistant Dean for Academic and Student Affairs Holly Wilkinson.

As a reminder, all students and employees must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 and must submit proof of vaccination by Sept. 1. Students can contact Dartmouth College Health Services about medical or religious waivers. Faculty and staff may request medical or religious waivers through the Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity. All individuals who are not fully vaccinated are required to test for COVID-19 at least twice a week. Any Dartmouth student or employee, regardless of vaccination status, may schedule tests more frequently than is required by Dartmouth for added peace of mind.

As we prepare for Fall term and new challenges ahead, it is important for us to remember that each of us may be at different points emotionally, mentally, and physically at this juncture of the pandemic. Regardless of where we are, we all play a critical role in making sure that Dartmouth and surrounding communities remain a safe place to live, learn, and work. This can only happen with our collective efforts to adhere to health and safety protocols and move forward together with good will, compassion, and empathy for one another.

Thank you for your continued patience, flexibility, and adaptability, and for everything you are doing to keep each other and our community safe. I know that your creativity, your resilience, and your support for each other will continue to help Thayer rise to the challenges of the weeks ahead.

All the best,
Alexis

Thayer School of Engineering Dean's Office
Alexis R. Abramson, Dean & Professor