Ginger Ambler sent the following message to students on July 28, 2022. See the latest COVID-19 related announcements on the W&M News website. – Ed.
Dear William & Mary Students,
I am excited to welcome you home to W&M in a few weeks! It will be wonderful to see returning students again and to greet our newest students as you begin your time at the university. You are the heart and soul of this place and I’ve missed your collective energy on campus during the summer months.
Though you will hear more from me and others at W&M between now and the start of the semester, I write today with an update regarding COVID-19 plans, in particular. Although the coronavirus remains unpredictable, with milder variants and vaccines freely available, the threat of COVID-19 to the campus community has declined. Today, COVID-19 is one illness among many the university will help students and employees manage on a daily basis. While William & Mary will continue to make decisions about how to respond in a phased way, at present, day-to-day emergency management of COVID-19 is no longer necessary.
William & Mary provides robust student health services that can support students to manage COVID-19 appropriately. The following amendments, effective Aug. 5, allow W&M to enfold COVID-19 response into the university’s overall health and wellness program:
- ReportCOVID is no longer required, and W&M will not be operating case management or contact tracing this year.
- Students who test positive should isolate at home or off campus if that is feasible. The university does not coordinate dedicated COVID-19 isolation housing.
- Residential students who are unable to isolate off campus should plan to isolate in their residence hall following these guidelines.
- W&M is offering student guides and resources online.
As you look forward to the upcoming semester, please plan for how to manage potential illness. And when you arrive in Williamsburg, please discuss and make a planned commitment with your roommates or housemates for how to handle a potential COVID-19 diagnosis. Visit wm.edu/coronavirus for more information about how to plan for potential diagnosis, and what university and community resources remain to help you.
How to protect yourself
- Keep current on COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters. Visit Vaccinate Virginia for local vaccination sites in the Commonwealth or Vaccines.gov for sites nationwide.
- Masking is always welcome anywhere at William & Mary and the last few years have clearly shown that masks dramatically reduce the spread of airborne infections, including COVID-19. Masks are required in the Student Health Center.
- Do not attend work, classes or gatherings if you are sick. Test if you suspect COVID-19. Visit If You’re Feeling Ill and How to Isolate If You Test Positive for more information.
- Familiarize yourself with symptoms that indicate an emergency, and ensure that you have contact information for your medical provider as well as local emergency resources, which are available at wm.edu/coronavirus.
- Testing is strongly recommended 24 hours prior to move-in (residential students) and/or the start of on-campus activity (students living off campus).
- All residential students at William & Mary will receive a free rapid test at the beginning of the fall 2022 semester.
- Limited free COVID-19 testing kits may be obtained through the U.S. federal government as well as the Williamsburg Regional Library. Visit wm.edu/coronavirus for more information.
- You may also purchase COVID-19 tests at the Sadler Center (vending machine).
- For help staying current in class and for information on health and wellness resources, visit Academic Resources and Support.
As we’ve learned, conditions can change rapidly. The Public Health Advisory Team will continue to advise W&M’s emergency management to respond if conditions require university operations to adapt. We have all become much more knowledgeable about public health in the over two years we have been living, learning and working with the coronavirus, and you, our students, have proven yourselves to be exceptionally responsible and committed to W&M and the surrounding community. I have every reason to be confident that we will continue to thrive together in the 2022-2023 school year.