Photo of the exterior of Hodgin Hall looking West

And, We’re Back!

On campus, in-person classes — like a lot of things interrupted at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic last year — are back for the Fall 2021 semester. UNM’s Main and branch campuses, which looked lonely for the past two semesters, are bustling again with students, staff and faculty, with health and safety protocols in place. About 80 percent of classes are being held in person and campus buildings have undergone systems renovations that include fresh air flushes several times a day. 

UNM, joining many other U.S. colleges and universities, made a record of vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 a requirement for enrolling or returning to work. 

“Due to growing concerns over COVID-19 variants and a rise in infections, we have determined that the ‘aspirational’ approach we initially adopted — to encourage, though not require vaccination — is no longer sufficient to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the UNM community,” UNM President Garnett S. Stokes said in a letter to the University. “Unfortunately, as infections have increased around the state and the nation, our vaccination rate has not kept pace in a manner sufficient to ensure we can protect our community from a similar outbreak,” said Stokes. “In short, with cases of COVID and its variants slowly increasing, if we wish to return to a fully operational campus in a manner that protects the safety of our community, encouraging vaccination and mask-wearing is not enough.” 

UNM offered free vaccinations in the SUB and required all employees and students to provide documentation of full vaccination. Responding to the increase in COVID cases and the new, more contagious delta variant, the University also revised its mask policy, requiring everyone to wear a mask indoors at all UNM locations.

Woman wearing a mask

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