Covid-19 Update

Zoe Stratos | opinions editor

Oct. 14, 2021

As of Oct. 11, 94% of full-time students who come to campus have either been vaccinated or has been declared  from the university’s  Covid-19 policy.

The university sent out a press release to share the news and thank students for “contributing to the goal of creating a safe environment in which you can pursue your educational goals.”

The email also included information regarding the remaining 6% who have not either submitted their vaccination status or provided proper documentation necessary for exemption, and in an interview with The Duke, vice president of marketing and communications, Gabe Welsch expanded upon t.

“The remaining 6% still need to upload their vaccination card to the confidential student portal or request and then provide the required documentation for an exemption,” said Welsch. “A lack of action from these students has the potential to jeopardize the health and safety of our community, so it’s essential that they step up and take immediate steps to provide proof of vaccination or documentation for an exemption.”

According to the email, as well as Welsch, the university is currently contacting these students

“The university is getting in touch with these students and is happy to provide assistance — if needed — to help them become compliant. Also, as a reminder, free COVID-19 vaccines are available on campus,” Welsch said.

If students still are noncompliant after a final warning, the university may issue a policy violation and begin taking action against students. Welsch did not specify when these actions will begin, but said that the university has begun initial contact with the 6%.

Actions that may be taken include holds on the ability to register for classes, MultiPass restriction and denial of access to campus facilities such as the Power Center and Gumberg Library — along with other unlisted measures.

As for Duquesne’s masking policy, the university has shown no sign of changing it even with the high level of vaccination and compliance on campus.

“The university stated in early September that the Allegheny County Health Department had concerns about the spread of cases as a result of the Delta variant — and their concerns were well founded, as we have seen. The county, as well as Duquesne’s own COVID-19 Health and Safety Committee, still recommend use of indoor masking to ensure continued protection,” Welsch said.