March 16, 2021
Dear students, faculty, staff, and parents,
I am delighted to share that we have received some positive news related to COVID-19 prevention. This news gives me confidence that we are turning a significant corner in the pandemic and that Reed will be well positioned to return to primarily in-person instruction and increased residence-hall occupancy in fall 2021. While we expect we will need to continue to follow a sound COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan that is carefully managed by Reed’s COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group, our return to more normal operations will take the following developments into consideration.
All Reed Community Members Will Have Access to the Vaccine by Summer 2021
On February 26, Governor Kate Brown announced that higher-education employees will be eligible for the vaccine no later than May 1 and that all adult Oregonians will be eligible no later than July 1. On March 11, President Biden directed all states to make all adult Americans eligible for the vaccine no later than May 1. Considering this information, the Reed COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group estimates that 70–90% of the Reed community will be vaccinated before the start of the fall semester. Oregon’s vaccination distribution schedule is available on the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) website.
Distribution of the Vaccine at Reed Is Promising
Reed has been approved as a provider of COVID-19 vaccines. Given the expanding supply of vaccines and the strong interest in rapid distribution, we are hopeful that we will receive our vaccine allotment soon. We are preparing our distribution plan and will share more information as soon as possible. When we receive vaccination supplies, we expect to be able to offer vaccinations to students who reside on campus and in Portland.
Multnomah County Has Moved to a Moderate Risk Level
On March 9, Governor Kate Brown announced that COVID-19 case rates have declined across Oregon. When the state's new COVID-19 risk levels began on March 12, Multnomah County, where Reed College resides, moved from high risk to moderate risk.
I recognize that the prospect of returning to more normal operations in the fall will elicit a range of reactions. This is to be expected, considering the uncertainty of what we have been through over the past year. I assure you that Reed will continue to employ a measured approach to campus operations and that we will make it through this transition together.
Many of you will have questions about vaccine distribution and will be eager for more details regarding fall operations. We will be providing additional information in the coming weeks as plans solidify. In the meantime, please continue to refer to Reed's COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan. We also welcome your questions or feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am deeply grateful for this community's grace during such a tumultuous period. I know that we will continue to persevere together, and nothing gives me a greater sense of pride.
With gratitude and excitement for what is ahead,