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St. Bonaventure University

A message from Dr. Zimmer on plans for fall

Apr 10, 2021 |

To the Bonaventure community:

As spring quickly slips away, with less than five weeks of classes remaining this semester, the time has come to consider what fall might look like for our returning students.

At this time, given the expanded availability of vaccines and the cautious optimism of health experts and agencies we consult with often, we plan to begin fall semester classes on the date we established two years ago before the pandemic started: Monday, Aug. 30, 2021.

Of course, we will need to continue to abide by the ongoing recommendations of public health experts in response to COVID-19, but the current trend lines give us hope that we will be able to restore classrooms to their traditional structures and that we’ll be able to resume most extracurricular activities in a far less virtual way.

While national and New York state guidance is still evolving, several important factors will guide the university’s fall plans. These plans may be adjusted as needed to ensure the safety of the Bonaventure community:

  • The plans are based on the assumption that, by mid-August, anyone in the university community who chooses to be vaccinated will have taken advantage of that critically important opportunity. All St. Bonaventure employees and students are, as of April 6, eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. We strongly encourage everyone to get the vaccine.
  • At this time, we expect to be operating classrooms at their full capacity. It is expected that most classes normally taught in person before the pandemic will resume in-person instruction.
  • Taking advantage of the opportunities revealed during an academic year in a pandemic, instructors may continue to utilize some of the instructional tools we used during the pandemic if they believe they are pedagogically advantageous to the course.
  • The level of COVID testing and personal protective measures, including the use of face coverings, will be determined closer to the fall semester based on state and local trends and in close coordination with public health officials. We’re hopeful that the vast majority of the campus community being vaccinated will eliminate the need for continued testing, but it’s simply too soon to guarantee that.

I will do so in a more formal way later this semester, but I want to take every opportunity to express my gratitude to the entire campus community for the efforts they’ve made to help us see our way through this extraordinarily challenging year.

We’re still healing from the gut punch of Dr. DePerro’s passing, and I know many of us will be for quite some time. But I do know how proud he’d be that we’ve overcome so many hurdles to get this close to the finish line.

I wish all of our students, faculty and staff success and good health this final month of the semester.

Zimmer signature

Dr. Joseph E. Zimmer
Acting President