Student Arrival and COVID-19 Testing Updates
Changes to COVID-19 Reporting Dashboard
First, we’d like to provide some context about how we will be sharing results throughout winter term and into the spring semester. We already have made some changes to the COVID-19 reporting dashboard and will further refine it in the coming days. Going forward, we will update the dashboard on Mondays and Thursdays, including the latest vaccination rates, positivity rates, active cases, and testing results.
We are actively collecting information about student and employee booster rates and will have more information to share by next week. As previously announced, there are several opportunities for students and employees to receive booster shots this week. Currently, 99 percent of students and 98 percent of employees are fully vaccinated. Approximately 191 students received booster shots upon arrival, and many reported to us they had received boosters over the winter break.
Arrival Period Testing Results
With the arrival of most students on Saturday and Sunday, we conducted approximately 1,914 Day 0 COVID-19 tests on those days, in addition to collecting the results of required prearrival tests. We also conducted arrival testing on approximately 350 students who arrived between December 27 and January 7. During that time, we experienced a positivity rate of about 3.8 percent. As of today, we have 73 new cases of COVID-19 among students on campus and 86 total active student cases. Some students who have tested positive were experiencing no symptoms, and others had mild symptoms. In addition, we have five active employee cases. We also expect that case numbers on campus will increase. Our situation is consistent with what we are seeing in other institutions of higher education. The positivity rate in Vermont is currently between 13 and 14 percent.
Mandatory Student Testing Wednesday and Saturday
Required COVID-19 testing for students will continue on both Wednesday, January 12, and Saturday, January 15, for all students who arrived on campus January 8 or 9. We also are conducting Day 0 testing for late arriving students today and will report those results on the dashboard on Thursday. Students will receive an email from COVID-19 testing reminding them of this requirement, but they may sign up for an appointment using the student testing link. Mandatory weekly testing will continue for students next week.
Employees may sign up for testing using the employee testing link.
Students and employees who test positive through campus testing will receive an email with instructions on how to access their results. All test results will be released to individuals’ Middlebury email addresses and be followed up with instructions, resources, and support via email and/or phone. Individuals expecting a result should always check their email spam or junk mail folders.
The beginning of the semester is an especially busy time even without the extra steps related to COVID-19. We appreciate your patience and cooperation as we all work to keep our campus healthy and safe.
Chief Health Officer and College Physician
Vice President for Student Life