Important information regarding fall quarter 2021

To: UCSC Community

From: Cynthia Larive Chancellor; Lori Kletzer Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor

We are thrilled to return to in-person instruction next week at UC Santa Cruz. We look forward to welcoming back our students, again offering in-person activities and sporting events, opening additional facilities for campus use, and feeling that energy that we’ve sorely missed and that makes our Slug community special.

As we’ve learned over the past 18 months, COVID-19 is hard to predict, and while we are eager for everyone to return, we must remain nimble and flexible in our transition to primarily in-person instruction this fall. We are reaching out today to provide an update on our COVID-19 protocols and give you an idea of what you can expect when you return to campus.

The Highlights

  • Fall Instruction Update
  • Fall Move-In Parking and Traffic Reminders
  • Welcome Week and Cornucopia
  • Final Reminder: Mandatory Proof of Vaccination Required
  • Consequences for Non-Compliance with the UC Vaccine Policy
  • Testing Resources
  • Badge System for Students
  • Face Covering Requirements

Fall Instruction Update

The majority of our classes — approximately 68 percent — will be in-person this fall. Individual students will see variations depending on their major and the courses they are planning to take. Classes with more than 150 students make up the bulk of our remote offerings. We expect to have even more in-person courses in winter and spring as we return to more regular operations providing that the vaccines continue to be effective against COVID-19 variants. Over the past six quarters, including two Summer Sessions, we have learned many lessons in instruction, innovation and access, and we aim to keep what we’ve learned front of mind as we move forward.

The McHenry Library and Science & Engineering Library buildings are open. Library patrons are asked to check the University Library websitefor the most current hours of operation, service updates and campus/building safety protocols. The library's study rooms will be available to reserve this fall .

Fall Move-In Parking and Traffic Reminders

On Sept. 16-19, we will welcome more than 9,000 residential students to our campus community. As it’s been more than 18 months since we’ve had this much campus activity, we want to remind you of the campus parking and traffic impacts we typically experience and ask for your patience and flexibility.

We anticipate thousands of additional vehicles on campus during move-in. If you are an employee, please consider an alternative work site if operationally feasible, and your supervisor allows. Additionally, we strongly encourage using alternative commute options to get to and from campus (such as sharing a ride or utilizing public transportation such as Santa Cruz METRO bus service) to help accommodate move-in traffic.

Welcome Week and Cornucopia

Required Welcome Week sessions will be offered virtually, but optional Welcome Week events will be a mix of virtual and in-person. Students should have received access to the Welcome Week Canvas schedule. College-specific Welcome Week activities/sessions were also included in the Welcome Week Canvas schedule sent by the Orientation Office. Speaking of welcoming, we are welcoming back our popular Cornucopia event, which will be held on Sept. 20-21.

Final Reminder: Mandatory Proof of Vaccination Required

If you haven’t completed it already, please upload your proof of vaccination immediately into Health E-Messenger to be compliant with UC Vaccine Policy . Please note: If you received your vaccination on the UC Santa Cruz campus, we have your vaccine card on file, and no action is needed.

Unvaccinated students who have filed a request for exception or already have an approved exception will be required to have a COVID-19 test upon arrival to campus and test on campus every four days following their arrival. Unvaccinated students will be required to sequester for seven days after arriving on campus, interacting minimally with other persons while strictly observing all COVID-19 spread mitigation precautions.

Unvaccinated students who have not filed a request for exception or whose exception request has been denied are not allowed on campus. They will not be allowed to move into an on-campus residential assignment if they have one, attend in-person classes or attend any other business or activities on site with the exception of accessing health services at the Student Health Center.

For faculty and staff, you must take one of the following actions immediately :

For staff working 100% remote this quarter, you will need to fill out the UCSC Routine Telecommuting/Remote Work instructions and be approved. Please reach out to your Staff Human Resources and Academic Personnel offices with any questions.

Consequences for Non-Compliance with the UC Vaccine Policy

If you haven’t uploaded your proof of vaccination or filed a request for an exception, you are considered non-compliant with the policy.

For students, this means not being able to move in or attend classes unless you have filed an exception or are in the process of becoming fully vaccinated (i.e., you have received the first shot as part of a COVID-19 vaccine series). If you are a student, you may also be referred to student conduct for non-compliance with university policy. If you don’t have an approved exception or have not uploaded proof of completed vaccination, on Nov. 1, 2021, you will receive a registration hold for winter quarter classes.

For employees, you will continue to receive notices to comply . Non-compliant employees will not be immediately barred from campus. However, as a condition of being allowed on campus while they become compliant, they must immediately take steps to become compliant and comply with all non-pharmaceutical interventions, including participating in asymptomatic COVID-19 testing at least every four days, wearing masks in all indoor public spaces, and completing the daily symptom checker. If you do not comply by October, you may face progressive discipline, up to and including termination of employment.

We take this policy very seriously—having a fully compliant, if not fully vaccinated, campus is vital to the health and well-being of our campus community.

Testing Resources

Asymptomatic Testing

The campus will continue its asymptomatic testing program, focusing on unvaccinated faculty, staff, and students. Vaccinated faculty, staff, and students may also utilize the campus asymptomatic testing services. Asymptomatic COVID-19 testing on campus is available at the Merrill Cultural Center. Additional information about testing hours, scheduling appointments and locations will be posted soon. Information is available online about the specifics of the Asymptomatic Testing program for vaccinated and unvaccinated populations.

Symptomatic Testing

Vaccinated and unvaccinated students experiencing possible COVID related symptoms should access testing at the Student Health Center. Employees experiencing possible COVID-19 related symptoms should see their primary care doctor and/or undergo COVID-19 testing off campus. You will also be prompted to complete the symptom screening survey every day.

Badge System for Students

The campus will again be instituting its badge system for students in Health e-Messenger. The badge shows your compliance status. You may need to show this badge when you participate in UCSC activities like eating at dining halls, attending in-person classes, etc. To see your badge status, which will be activated one week before classes start, go to your Health e-Messenger home screen and select Show Badge. The badge will display the following colors, depending on your level of compliance:

  • GREEN (CLEARED): You can come to campus and be on-site. You must still follow all UCSC COVID-related protocols.
  • YELLOW (OVERDUE): You may come to campus/on-site, but you are late for your required COVID-19 test and/or you have not completed your daily symptom screening survey and must take immediate action. Please note that access to campus services, such as dining, campus business services, advising, classes and labs, recreational facilities, libraries and transit, etc., may be impacted.
  • RED (NOT CLEARED, IN QUARANTINE OR ISOLATION): You cannot be on campus/on site except to access healthcare services at the Student Health Center. This means you are:
    • Not in compliance with UC COVID-19 Vaccination Policy:Log on to Health e-Messenger and submit proof of vaccination or exemption request.
    • Quarantine: Until your healthcare provider says it's OK to leave, you are advised to stay at home but may go out for a walk with face covering, avoiding other people. Quarantine is used for people who were exposed to COVID-19. Usually quarantine lasts 10-14 days from the day of exposure.
    • Isolation: Stay home until your healthcare provider says it's OK to leave. Isolation is used to separate sick people from others. Isolation usually lasts 10-14 days from the first day of symptoms, providing all symptoms are improving and you have no fever for 24 hours (without using a fever-reducing medication like Tylenol).
  • BLUE (NOT APPLICABLE): Your badge is not used for access to any site. This likely means the UC COVID-19 Vaccination Policy is not applicable because you are not coming to campus or any university site for any reason. If you see Blue and believe it to be an error, please contact Student Health Services to resolve the issue.

Face Covering Requirements

Face coverings are required in all in-door spaces with minor exceptions and for all passengers riding Campus Transit shuttles and METRO buses. Additionally, masks may be required for outdoor activities when large crowds are expected.

In closing, we are thankful for all of our campus community’s work to help in the return to full operations. We look forward to seeing our Slugs in person soon.


Cindy and Lori