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Miami’s fall semester; answers to all your COVID questions

<p>Butler County announced it has recorded its first case of monkeypox just hours after Miami warns students of the risk associated with the disease.</p>

Butler County announced it has recorded its first case of monkeypox just hours after Miami warns students of the risk associated with the disease.

As students prepare to move back to Oxford and begin a new school year still impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, The Miami Student has compiled a Q & A to provide the Miami community with information about what to expect during the fall 2021 semester.

It’s important to note that this information is subject to change throughout the semester. More stories will come as new information emerges and changes. But as of Aug. 17, here is a comprehensive list of Miami’s COVID-19 policies.

Q: Will I have to wear a mask on campus?

A: Miami is requiring masks indoors on campus, including inside residence hall common areas and classrooms, regardless of vaccination status.

Q: Are COVID-19 vaccines required? If not, will they ever be? 

A: Vaccines are not currently required to attend Miami. As of this story’s publishing, Miami has not announced plans to require students to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. But state and federal guidelines will be followed as updates are released according to Jessica Rivinius, director of news and media relations. 

Q: If I am unvaccinated, what rules do I have to follow?

A: Miami is asking unvaccinated students to follow CDC recommended guidelines, which include wearing a mask indoors, maintaining social distance and practicing other proper hygiene methods like washing hands. 

Q: Is Miami providing vaccines? Where?

A: Miami is providing vaccination clinics for faculty, staff and students to get the free COVID-19 vaccine at the Student Health Center, located inside Harris Hall.

Q: Will I be able to meet with my student org in person?

A: Yes. Student organizations can hold in-person meetings but are encouraged to host large-scale events outdoors, said Kimberly Vance, director of student life. No capacity limits are being enforced, but any indoor gatherings require face masks regardless of vaccination status.

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Q: Is Miami able to hold large events? What are the restrictions?

A: Miami will begin to host events again, like Mega Fair and Art After Dark, with minimal restrictions. If the gathering is indoors, both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals are expected to wear a mask. Miami is also strongly encouraging any individuals who feel sick to stay home from events.

Q: Will there still be COVID-19 testing on campus? How do I get out of it?

A: Students who are not vaccinated or have not submitted a record of their vaccination status (at least one dose of the vaccine) to the MedProctor student portal must submit to regular testing. Testing kits will  also be available to off-campus students, faculty and staff. More information on testing can be found here.

Q: I’m an international student, will I have to be quarantined or be tested when I get to campus? 

A: Miami is following CDC guidelines, which strongly recommend both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals who have traveled to get a COVID-19 test 3-5 days after travel. 

Unvaccinated individuals should also self-quarantine for 7 days after travel in addition to the test.

Q: What does move-in look like this year?

A: Move-in for underclassmen will take place over the course of two days instead of being spread out over a week. Upperclassmen and student organizations will be available to help students move in. If students have not submitted COVID-19 vaccination records prior to their arrival, they will be tested during move in.

Q: Will I have to get a COVID-19 test before I move into my residence hall?

A: Students who are unvaccinated against COVID-19 or have not uploaded their vaccine documentation will have to get a COVID-19 test at Millett Hall before arriving at their residence hall. Students can also get the first dose of the vaccine at Millett during move-in.

Q: Will there be any social distancing rules this semester?

A: Social distancing is still required for individuals who are not vaccinated per CDC guidelines.