A Letter to Parents from NYU President Andrew Hamilton
Date: June 24, 2021
TO: NYU Parents
FROM: NYU President Andrew Hamilton
Dear NYU Parents, Guardians, and Loved Ones,
I hope your summer is going well, and that you and all the members of your family will be able to have some time together to rest and relax and enjoy one another’s company. As I have many times since March 2020, I am writing to let you know about the latest developments at NYU’s New York City campus.
In the 15 months since NYU pivoted to remote instruction as COVID’s impact fell on New York, much has changed. With careful planning and a shared sense of responsibility among our community members, NYU chose to reconvene on campus in fall of 2020, with those who were able to attend in person having the option to do so, while others had the flexibility to continue remotely. Throughout this past academic year, we relied on testing, screening, physical distancing, reduced density, contact tracing, quarantine and isolation, and careful control of access to our buildings to keep our community safe. Those steps, and the willingness of our students, faculty, and staff to conscientiously abide by our rules, enabled us to operate throughout the year without a significant outbreak. At the same time, we emphasized flexibility for those members of our community who needed or wished to study remotely, with many of our faculty teaching classes that were accessible simultaneously to in-person and remote students.
In the coming year, as we return to our standard in-person format, the key to keeping NYUers safe will be vaccination. As I wrote to tell you last month, NYU is requiring its students to be fully vaccinated before the start of fall classes, and to upload proof of vaccination by July 19, 2021 (and we have provided guidance for students outside the US, too). And NYU faculty and employees are required to be vaccinated, too.
High rates of vaccination will protect individual NYUers, keep our community safe, and contribute to New York’s fight against COVID. Widespread vaccination is vital for our plans to lift many of the restrictions associated with COVID-19; to restore a full curriculum of in-person classes; to resume gatherings, lectures, and events; to restart regular dining, athletics and recreation, and the performing arts; to permit socializing in and among our student residence halls; and to carrying on an in-person commencement not only for the Class of 2022, but for the Classes of 2020 and 2021, as we pledged to do. Already more than 40,000 members of our community have been vaccinated and uploaded proof.
Following a normal year, there is a tendency to let things slip a bit over the summer; following a year like 2020-21, I can only imagine the impulse many might have to put off yet another requirement.
You can help us by reminding your student to get vaccinated and upload proof of vaccination as soon as possible, and certainly by the July 19th deadline.
I wish all of you a good summer, and a hopeful, healthy fall. After what seems like a very long absence, I look forward to seeing many of you in the fall and over the course of the next year.
Be well. Take care.
New York University
P.S. If you are looking for a good read for the summer, why don’t you join us in reading the NYU Reads selection for the summer, Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer? My wife Jennie and I will be reading it over the summer with the rest of the NYU community, and look forward to a lively set of events discussing it in the fall.
P.P.S. We recently put together an informal “infographic” about COVID and the past year. I thought you might enjoy seeing it.