Campus Bulletin: Current Students, Faculty and Staff, Parents, ObieSafe

ObieSafe: COVID-19 Then and Now

August 13, 2021 12:00 PM

Office of Communications

Keeping up with the most up-to-date information about COVID can be a full-time job. The public health advice on how to cope with this pandemic changes frequently. To apply the latest thinking to Oberlin’s layered strategy, Katie Gravens, Campus Health Coordinator, met this week with Dave Covell, Lorain County Health Commissioner, and David Hertz, Oberlin College Chief of Staff.

Video link: Why Oberlin is different now during the pandemic than in the past.
A conversation with Health Commissioner of Lorain County Public Health Dave Covell, Oberlin College Campus Health Coordinator Katie Gravens and Chief of Staff David Hertz. August 11, 2021.

Key points of the discussion:

  • Oberlin, Lorain County, and Ohio are in a different and better place today than we were a year ago due to the availability of vaccines.
  • Very high vaccination rates among our students and employees give us confidence that we will be able to manage risks involved with in-person instruction and residential life on campus.
  • The emergence of the delta variant is a reminder that the pandemic is not over. However, we are operating in a very different, and generally much safer, environment.
  • We want students to enjoy their Oberlin experience, trusting that the College will institute the mitigation strategies that will minimize the likelihood of infection.
  • Hospitalizations and death are less than 1.6% among the fully vaccinated statewide.
  • There is no need to test vaccinated students upon arrival to campus, as the risk of infection is so low.
  • Unvaccinated students will be tested upon arrival to campus.
  • Oberlin will continue to offer symptomatic testing through Student Health Services.
  • Oberlin asks that students do not get tested outside of Oberlin if a student believes they have been exposed – please call Student Health Services (440) 775-8180. Testing out of fear of exposure or as a precaution is not a productive use of your time.
  • Don’t decide to quarantine because you “think” you have been exposed. Contact to discuss the circumstances. Close contacts are identified through contact tracing and contacted with instructions individually.
  • Special protocols for select groups such as unvaccinated athletes will occur.

Watch the video