Despite Loyola’s classrooms returning to full capacity this fall — partly due to the school’s vaccine mandate — there are still precautions in place to keep students safe while the COVID-19 pandemic continues.
Since Loyola announced in April all students must be vaccinated to return to campus, 98.2% of students living in residence halls are vaccinated and 93% of full-time staff are vaccinated, according to a Loyola webinar Aug. 19. The students and faculty who are returning to campus unvaccinated have religious or medical exemptions.
So, what does this mean for having a “normal” semester at Loyola? The Phoenix answers your questions about COVID-19 regulations on Loyola’s campuses.
Are masks required on campus?
In light of new CDC mask guidance and substantial levels of COVID-19 transmission in the city of Chicago and surrounding counties, masks are required in all in-door public spaces at all of Loyola’s campuses regardless of vaccination status. Students will also have to display their Loyola Health app before entering the buildings.
Loyola’s mask mandate will be revisited as the university monitors the spread of COVID-19, said Loyola spokesperson Anna Shymanski- Zach.
Do students still have to participate in surveillance testing?
Students who are exempt from the mandatory vaccination requirement due to religious or medical reasoning are required to participate in on-campus surveillance testing, whereas vaccinated students don’t have to participate in COVID-19 testing, Shymanski-Zach said.
COVID-19 testing will still be available to all students regardless of vaccination status throughout the semester.
Re-entry testing was required of all unvaccinated students living on campus and all international students at their move-in date. Students who have been vaccinated weren’t required to test at the time of their move-in, according to Loyola’s website.
If students test positive for COVID-19, they’re required to report their test to the university and quarantine for 14 days.
If a student or faculty member isn’t compliant with the COVID-19 surveillance testing, they’ll receive two warnings. After the two warnings, if a student or faculty member still isn’t complying, campus access privileges will be revoked and they’ll be referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution or a supervisor, according to Loyola’s website.
Are visitors and guests allowed on campus?
Visitors are allowed for certain on-campus events including Alumni Weekend, Founders’ Dinner, Opus Prize, and Family Weekend. Capacity limits for these events are still yet to be determined, according to Loyola’s website.
Guests can attend indoor and outdoor athletic events as long as they’ve received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine or received a negative test result no more than 72 hours before arrival at the event. Capacity limits for sporting events are still to be determined by the university, according to Loyola’s website.
Students are also allowed to have guests sleep over in their dorm rooms as long as their roommate agrees to the circumstances, according to Loyola’s website.
Are clubs and sports allowed to meet in-person?
Though masks are still required in public spaces around the university, all club meetings and sports practices can resume at full capacity, according to Shymanski-Zach. Students are also allowed to meet in-person with professors.
What about other Loyola services?
All dining halls reopened at 100% capacity as well as the Loyola shuttle to Water Tower Campus and the 8-ride taxi service, Shymanski-Zach said.