COVID-19 RESPONSE

Open with Classes On-Campus

Week two is in the books and we are safe and healthy by choice

Posted: August 21, 2020

Dear Students,

Week two is in the books and we are safe and healthy by choice. That’s the good news.

Here is the next challenge we have made for ourselves: There are 13 weeks to go.

Thanksgiving might seem far off, but we are winning the semester -- day by day and week by week.

We can all see why: You keep wearing your mask. You keep washing your hands. You are keeping your distance.

Well, mostly.

We all could be doing better - and we appreciate your respectful compliance when asked to adjust your masks.

We had one more positive case of COVID-19 early this week, which led to 11 others being quarantined. This is a reminder to us all that we need to stay vigilant, to keep our guard up.

There are lessons to be learned from what happened earlier this week at the University of Notre Dame and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Both shifted classes to online learning after COVID-19 outbreaks on campus. The outbreaks were attributed to large off-campus parties.

Please don’t let that happen here. You have sacrificed so much to be on campus. Don’t be the one who shuts down your university.
  
Keep wearing your mask. Keep washing your hands. Keep your distance.  

Which brings us to Labor Day.

The holiday is fast approaching and many might be contemplating plans to leave for the long weekend. We urge you not to do so.

You risk bringing COVID-19 back to our Gannon family if you leave.

To encourage and bribe you to stay and have fun here, we have many events planned and rewards for participating. (There will be emails about this next week.) The Recreation and Wellness Center will be open late. And, Erie already offers plenty to discover – including seven miles of beaches, trails to hike, and bikes to rent at Presque Isle State Park. You could also use the time to rest and study even.

Also, anyone who travels to a “hot state” identified by the Pennsylvania Department of Health will need to isolate and be tested on their return.

You, and we all, deserve to have an on-campus experience, but keeping that privilege is now something we are earning each day. That will require persistent effort and deep respect for each other. The Gannon student body has never failed to impress with its commitment to selfless service and care and compassion for others.  The need for this commitment is at an all-time high. Together, we will overcome the challenges of this pandemic.

Let’s win the next 13 weeks.

Keep wearing your mask. Keep washing your hands. Keep your distance.  

Thank you,

Brian Nichols
Vice President, Student Development and Engagement