About Manchester

Weekly Update - September 24


From: President <President@manchester.edu>
Sent: Thursday, September 24, 2020 9:50 AM
To: All Colleagues <AllColleagues@manchester.edu>
Subject: Weekly update - Sept. 24


Dear Colleagues,

Students and colleagues on both Manchester campuses have been doing a phenomenal job wearing masks and acting responsibly toward others. Thank you for all of those efforts.

As the pandemic wears on, however, I know it also wears on our patience. We get tired of wearing masks or not being in the same room with our friends. It’s not just Manchester. People across the country report feeling “pandemic fatigue.”  We are tempted to revert to old habits, violate public health guidelines “just this once,” pull down our mask to talk to someone, or walk into a colleague’s office or work space to ask them a question.

Especially as we enter cold and flu season, please resist those temptations and stay vigilant against the spread of the virus. Wear your masks, stay at least six feet from other people, and wash your hands frequently and thoroughly. Call or email your colleagues. Meet with them on Teams or Zoom, even if their office is next door to yours.

COVID-19 cases are rising in the United States, and the risks will increase as the weather gets colder and we move activities inside. We have done so well and come so far. Let’s stay focused on protecting our health and the health of others, and keeping our students on campus until Nov. 20, after which they will learn remotely through January.

Flu shots: Erin Foreman, director of sports medicine, reports that flu shot appointments have been added at the North Manchester campus. If you have not been vaccinated, please keep checking this link for available appointment times.

For the Fort Wayne campus, Raylene Rospond, associate dean of clinical affairs and outreach, has announced a flu vaccine clinic next Tuesday, Sept. 29. An email from Raylene Wednesday morning provided details for our Fort Wayne colleagues.

Testing and quarantine: Abby Van Vlerah, vice president of student life, reports that testing has been going well. We have been concentrating on groups of students, such as student-athletes, and recently tested the Manchester Activities Council and one floor of one residence hall.  

Though some people have asked, we will not post the number of students in quarantine on our dashboard. We are putting students in quarantine out of an abundance of caution, not only when they have been exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 but sometimes if they present symptoms that turn out to be allergies or a cold. Erin is triaging their symptoms and making those decisions to protect others.

Associate Professor Trent Towne, who specializes in infectious disease, reminds us that quarantine is what we should always do when we are sick with cold or flu symptoms. Staying home and away from other people when we don’t feel well should be part of our normal behavior. I will keep saying it: If you don’t feel well, please stay home.

Thank you again for all of your efforts in keeping our community safe. We are planning now for spring semester, understanding that the virus will remain a threat. We will continue de-densifying our academic spaces, offices and other common areas. We also will need to keep wearing masks and socially distance.

We will make adjustments based on what has and has not worked this fall, and will share more details about spring semester plans when they are available. In the meantime, keep up the good work. Our success depends on it.

Be well,


Dave McFadden
Manchester University