COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan


April 29, 2022

Dear students, faculty, and staff,

We send our congratulations to seniors completing their senior theses and celebrating their accomplishments.  We also need to recognize that today's update comes at the end of a challenging week for those in our campus community who have tested positive for the coronavirus and for their friends and families. As we approach the end of another semester, we recognize the burden this latest surge has placed on us, and the disappointment many feel as we continue to adjust our activities and work in response to this ongoing pandemic. We have the utmost admiration and appreciation for everyone in the Reed community for your resilience, and for your dedication to the community's health and wellbeing.

The Reed COVID Response Team continues to provide individual support to every newly identified COVID case, and is currently working to develop alternative solutions to resource limitations posed by this surge. Please see the guidance given in yesterday's communication.  In the meantime, we ask all community members to continue to use good judgment in staying home and away from others if you are ill or exposed, masking diligently while around others, and following isolation and quarantine instructions provided by healthcare professionals and the college.

Below, we offer three things you should know today:

Changes to on-campus events

To promote mask use to the fullest extent possible and limit the spread of COVID in our highly-impacted student community, any student events with food should restructure so that the events are either held outdoors or do not include food. In addition, any mandatory events (where students or employees are required to attend) should restructure to be held outside, not include food, provide take-away food or become optional. These changes apply to any events scheduled between now and Commencement on May 16. We make these recommendations so that individuals are able to choose to limit or avoid events where they are eating with others indoors.  Whether on campus or in a local restaurant, we know that eating with those outside your close social circle increases the risks of COVID transmission.

Changes to thesis orals

Many thesis orals will be held on-line, rather than in-person. In-person thesis orals will not include food, so that everyone can remain masked during the oral.

Surveillance testing

Next week, COVID-19 surveillance testing will be available on Tuesday and Thursday (May 3 and 5) from 8:30 AM to 3:00 PM in Greenwood. Individuals may also participate in testing using one of the two satellite testing sites on campus, available in the Student Union and the Biology building. Note: additional testing dates may be added as needed.

If you have questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to the COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group at

In health,

Madison Riethman
Reporting on behalf of the COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group

Gary Granger, Director of Community Safety
Karnell McConnell-Black, Vice President for Student Life
Kathy Oleson, Dean of the Faculty & Professor of Psychology
Tawana Parks, Dean of Students
Hugh Porter, Vice President for College Relations & Planning
Madison Riethman, COVID-19 Response Coordinator
Suzy Renn, Professor of Biology
Timmie Rochon, Medical Services Director
April Sams, Director of Risk Management & Environmental Health and Safety
Lynn Valenter, Vice President of Finance and Treasurer

PS: Our COVID-19 Dashboard includes current information on the total number of cases, vaccination rate, and other public health indicators. Additionally, all our COVID-19 communications are cataloged here.