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Whitworth University Announces Intentions for Fall Term 2021

February 19, 2021
​Dear campus community,

Even though the COVID-19 pandemic continues to challenge our university community and the world, the rapid development of life-saving vaccines and their accelerating distribution gives considerable hope that the end to many restrictions is on the horizon.

Although circumstances are always subject to change, Whitworth University's intention is to resume normal operations for the 2021 Fall Term, including unrestricted occupancy in campus residence halls and a full array of in-person classes and co-curricular experiences. These are important and valuable aspects of a Whitworth education of mind and heart.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Whitworth has employed effective safety protocols to identify, track and mitigate the virus on campus and among our off-campus students. These measures have allowed us to host students and limited activities on campus and maintain a largely in-person and hybrid instructional strategy, called WhitworthFLEX. Our approach for the remaining duration of the pandemic, including for May Term and summer classes, will be to adhere to the health and safety guidelines offered by local, state and national authorities. We will keep the community informed of any changes to health protocols as they occur.

As vaccine distribution efforts expand this spring, Whitworth will offer information and, if possible, clinics to our students and employees, subject to guidelines and availability. In the meantime, Whitworth's COVID Response Team will continue efforts to mitigate and manage COVID-19 cases on campus.

Currently, Whitworth is following strict public health protocols on campus, including required face coverings, physical distancing, daily health attestations, enhanced cleaning, regular testing and contact tracing. Throughout the fall semester, Whitworth averaged 9.76 positive cases per week among a population of nearly 4,000 students and employees. Weekly surveillance tests resulted in a 0.43 percent positivity rate, revealing very low community spread among the university community.

As we prepare to return to more normal campus operations this fall, Whitworth will remain vigilant and thorough in its delivery of a safe and relational educational experience. And we will continue, in all our endeavors, to advance our mission of equipping students to "honor God, follow Christ and serve humanity."

Beck A. Taylor | President