COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan


May 6, 2021

Dear Reed students, faculty, staff, and parents,

We write to you today—in the final days of the spring semester—with great news. All Reed community members are now eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine; Oregon Governor Kate Brown announced Multnomah County, where Reed resides, will move from “extreme risk” back to “high risk” on Friday, May 7; and public health restrictions at Reed will go back to where they were prior to April 30.

As we head toward the summer months and prepare for the fall semester, we share with you what you need to know now regarding Reed’s operations in relation to our COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan.

COVID-19 vaccine

After further consultation and review with public health officials, the college, on the recommendation of the COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group, will require all students to be vaccinated for the 2021–22 academic year with a COVID-19 vaccine authorized by the World Health Organization. The college must also follow Oregon law in permitting students to request exemption from this vaccination requirement for medical or non-medical reasons. We will add updated information on how students may respond to this new requirement and any additional updates on college policy and recommendations regarding vaccination to the vaccine FAQ in the coming weeks. We are still assessing the most appropriate policy approach regarding vaccination requirements for faculty and staff. Questions? Contact the COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group.

Information session for continuing students and their families

Reed hosted a fall 2021 information session for continuing Reed students and their families. The session addressed COVID-19 operations for the fall 2021 semester; continuing support for students during the pandemic; academic course formats, including important fall dates; on-campus housing and the return of roommates; guidelines for returning to campus; and a general overview of plans for campus life as we return to primarily in-person instruction.

Commencement 2021

Reed is planning for an in-person and virtual Commencement ceremony. Graduates and faculty are invited to attend in person. Guests will join virtually. We regret that guests, family members, and friends will not be able to attend in person, regardless of vaccination or testing status. Based on current OHA guidelines, limits are set on the number of people who can gather in person at an event. Additionally, we have a testing requirement for in-person attendees. Graduates and faculty who plan to attend the in-person ceremony must be tested for COVID-19 twice this week and twice next week, regardless of vaccination status. Questions? Contact conference & events planning.

Campus and facility access after May 17

The majority of buildings will remain accessible to those with swipe-card authorization throughout the summer. The library will be open only for lobby pickup of books and materials from May 15 through July. Campus grounds will reopen to the public for the summer on June 1. In the coming months, we will reevaluate whether our outdoor spaces can remain open to the public for the fall semester. Questions? Contact community safety.

Moving out of on-campus housing

Reed housing for the spring semester closes Tuesday, May 18, at noon. Students who are moving out received an email this past week from residence life with closing information. Questions? Contact residence life.

Students approved to remain on campus for the summer

Approximately 70 students have been approved for summer housing. They are required to participate in weekly COVID-19 testing. A comprehensive guide to resources and services available to students over the summer will be distributed in mid-May. The residence life office will host several programs throughout the summer for students living on campus. Questions? Contact residence life.

Dining on campus

Bon Appétit operates the college’s food service program. Commons is currently open Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. The Marketplace is currently open Monday through Friday, from noon to 8 p.m. From May 18 through the summer, Commons will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and the Marketplace will be closed. Questions? Contact Matt Talavera, general manager at Bon Appetit.

Reed health & counseling center (HCC) operations

The HCC will close for the summer on May 18 at noon, with the exception of limited medical services for COVID-related issues, such as testing, isolation, and quarantine support. Administrative staff will also be available during business hours for medical record requests and to answer students' questions. Students who receive psychiatric medication from our HCC provider are strongly encouraged to meet with her before summer break to discuss a summer medication plan. Questions? Contact the HCC.

Working on campus

As we announced in March, we are planning to return to primarily in-person instruction and increased residence hall occupancy in fall 2021. Department directors are planning for this transition, and the COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group is reviewing guidance from state and county health authorities and employment authorities. Questions? Contact your manager or human resources.

COVID-19 testing

The COVID-19 testing requirements and schedule for the summer are outlined in Reed’s COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan, under testing. We plan to post the COVID-19 testing requirements and schedule for the fall 2021 semester on the website by June 15. Questions? Contact the COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group.

Face-covering requirements

While the CDC announced in April 2021 that fully vaccinated individuals may forego face coverings in uncrowded outdoor spaces, the state of Oregon continues to uphold a mask requirement in all indoor and outdoor spaces, with limited exceptions. Until further notice, Reed community members should continue to follow Reed’s face-covering protocols on campus. Questions? Contact the COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group.

Fall move-in schedule

For travel-planning purposes, we provide the following dates. Students should plan to arrive between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. on their respective move-in day.

  • Wednesday, August 18: New international students and new peer mentor program students arrive
  • Monday, August 23: New students arrive and Orientation begins
  • Friday, August 27: Returning students arrive

Arrival procedure requirements will be communicated by June 15. Questions? Contact residence life.

New Student Orientation

New Student Orientation will begin on Monday, August 23. In June, incoming students will receive an invitation to review Orientation materials at their own pace on an online platform before arriving on campus. Questions? Contact the Orientation team.

New Parent & Family Orientation

Reed is planning both a hybrid (in-person and virtual) version of Parent & Family Orientation and an entirely virtual program. Questions? Contact the Orientation team.

Advising and registration for 2021–22

Advising began after spring break. Registration opened for continuing students in April and will continue through the summer via SOLAR. Students returning from a leave of absence are welcome to enroll once they’ve been in touch with their advisers. Students can check their enrollment in IRIS. Advising for new students begins in late June, with registration for new students opening July 6. The schedule of classes is updated regularly. Students on waitlists will be notified as space opens up in a full class; each student will have 48 hours to secure an available spot before it is offered to another student. Questions? Contact the registrar’s office.

When will you hear from us next?

The COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group is planning the following communications to faculty, staff, students, and parents:

  • June 15: Email regarding fall 2021 plans; update of COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan website
  • July 29: Email providing an update on fall 2021 operations

Thank you for continuing to diligently follow Reed’s COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan. We are grateful for the care you have demonstrated for our community.

Wishing you good health,

The COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group

PS You can view all COVID-19 communications to members of the Reed community on the COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan website.


COVID-19 Risk Assessment Working Group

Kathy Oleson, Dean of the Faculty & Professor of Psychology
Hugh Porter, Vice President for College Relations & Planning

Cindy Anderson, Interim Dean of Students
Lorraine Arvin, Vice President and Treasurer
Gary Granger, Director of Community Safety
Mandy Heaton, Executive Director of Communications & Public Affairs
Karnell McConnell-Black, Vice President for Student Life
Madison Riethman, COVID-19 Response Coordinator and Health Project Manager
Suzy Renn, Professor of Biology
Timmie Rochon, Medical Services Director
April Sams, Director of Risk Management & Environmental Health and Safety