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September 9, 2021

Dear Fredonia community:

Happy Thursday! I hope this update finds you all doing great. 

Students, I hope you are settling into the study habits and routines that will contribute to a successful semester. Remember the campus has many support services available for you.  
I have several items to share in this weekly update. 
COVID-19 on campus
As of this morning, we have had 38 positive COVID-19 cases among students since the start of the semester. Of the 38 total cases, 11 students have recovered and have been cleared to return to on-campus classes and activities. You can find updated information on the SUNY-operated COVID-19 dashboard. 
It is important to note that about a dozen of the positive cases came from a pool test conducted on August 31. A vast majority of the positive cases involved students who were vaccinated and showed no symptoms whatsoever. I share this with you to emphasize three points: first, this is proof that the vaccines are working because those who had the virus did not know they had it and felt fine. Second, the number of cases shows the importance of continued surveillance testing. Third, being vaccinated is not a license to lay down one’s guard against COVID-19.  Remember to avoid situations or decisions that can make you vulnerable to variants of the virus. 
Everyone, we must do everything to keep the campus safe from infections.  A high number of infections will force us to pause most of our in-person instruction and extracurricular activities.  
Surveillance testing
All individuals on campus, regardless of vaccination status, are required to take part in surveillance testing. Unvaccinated and/or exempt individuals must participate in weekly testing. Vaccinated individuals must participate in testing once a month.
Students will be granted one warning for failure to report for testing. After a second missed test, a student will be subject to the student conduct process and possible removal from campus housing and participation in campus activities. There is more information on surveillance testing, including the schedule on the Fall 2021 COVID-19 Guidelines web page. 
Vaccine mandate
As mentioned above, we are seeing the benefits of the vaccines in keeping our students, and our community who get infected by COVID-19, from becoming seriously ill. That is one the reasons SUNY has mandated vaccinations for all students. Please remember that all students need to submit proof of vaccination by September 27, 2021. If you are not vaccinated by that date, you will be dropped from your classes and de-registered. If you are vaccinated, and haven’t yet submitted your records, please do so soon. More information about how to submit proof of vaccination is available on the "Fall 2021 COVID-19 Guidelines web page.
Mask requirements 
When we first mandated masks inside campus buildings at the start of the semester, we promised to get back to you by September 15 with an update. The mask mandate is based on CDC guidance relative to the transmission rate for Chautauqua County. If you look at the CDC data tracker for Chautauqua County, the numbers are not good. The 7-day positivity rate is 12%. The number of positive cases in the county is up 13% over the past week. For all these reasons, we will keep the mask mandate inside campus buildings in place until further notice. 
As I have stated previously, I know that wearing a mask can be an inconvenience. But, compared to the impact of getting infected with COVID-19, the inconvenience associated with the mask is far better. 
A safe campus
I also want to reassure everyone that SUNY Fredonia continues its decades-long trend of being an extraordinarily safe campus. Our crime statistics show a near-zero level of crime. This is a testament to our students' commitment to treat each other with respect and care.  In addition, our University Police department provides constant law enforcement patrols to detect and deter criminal activity. University Police leverage state-of-the-art technology, including the smartphone application RAVE Guardian, active emergency blue light phones, a campus-wide mass notification system, and a video surveillance system consisting of hundreds of cameras at random locations on the campus, to provide students with a safe and secure environment to learn and to grow.  We take the safety of every student, faculty, and staff member seriously.  Please be assured that our commitment to campus safety will always be given the highest priority.    
Thank you for reading this update.  I will have another update for you next week. Until then, please continue to protect yourself from COVID-19—wear your masks diligently, get vaccinated if you are not, and take part in the campus surveillance testing. 
Very truly yours,

Dr. K

Stephen H. Kolison, Jr., Ph.D.
President and Professor

Dr. Stephen H. Kolison, Jr., President

  • 138 Fenton Hall State University of New York at Fredonia Fredonia, NY 14063

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