COVID Operations Group: Campus Update


As the Covid Operations Group (COG) team, we are taking in all of the update state health guidance and determining how and when to implement any corresponding changes in Oxy policy.

Oxy Community:

As many of you may know, with yesterday's reopening of California, most of the specific COVID rules that have governed colleges and universities in the county and the state during the pandemic have been retired. We are clearly entering a new phase. We also await an expected ruling from CAL OSHA, the state body which sets many workplace safety rules, that will address policies regarding employee masking in the workplace among other areas.

The headline we want to express here is that as a COG team, we are taking all of this in and determining how and when to implement any corresponding changes in Oxy policy. Some of the new guidance may have clear and straightforward applications to campus life. And some of the new guidance will leave room for flexibility in how we choose to go forward. We want to be purposeful and thoughtful in how we roll out changes to Oxy policy. And in some areas, we'll need to discuss proposed policy changes with key groups prior to announcing changes.

For example, with the June 15 changes, the capacity rules that applied to classrooms, libraries, restaurants and athletic facilities no longer exist. Social distancing requirements also have largely gone away. We want to be clear, we're not changing the corresponding Oxy policies just yet. We have been and will continue to work with the people and teams that lead key campus operations in order to manage how we scale up operations this summer. We do have flexibility, especially given the slower pace of activity on campus in summer. We also recognize that given the statewide changes, many of you are curious to know how this impacts Oxy for the rest of summer and for fall. Over the next week or so, you’ll hear more from the COG team on these operational topics. For now, our current rules and policies stay the same.

With the statewide changes however, there are going to be fewer policies that the COG team will need to consider going forward. One, will certainly be masking policy, as we look at the latest guidance from the CDC and CAL OSHA. As always, we will consider the latest public guidance and the health and safety of the Oxy community. We will also take into account the vaccination levels of the campus community.

Please let us know if you have any questions. You can submit any comments or questions to oxy@oxy.edu, an inbox staffed by the Marketing & Communications team. Thanks.

Marty Sharkey

COVID Operations Group

Sharla Fett, Faculty Council President, Professor of American History

Rob Flot, Vice President for Student Affairs & Dean of Students

Amos Himmelstein, Vice President & Chief Operating Officer

Nora Kahn, General Counsel

Sara Semal, Senior Director - Emmons Wellness Center

Marty Sharkey, Vice President of Communications & Institutional Initiatives

Wendy Sternberg, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College

James Uhrich, Vice President for Information Technology Services & Chief Information Officer