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The University of Illinois Springfield could return to a more normal atmosphere in the fall if the pandemic trends continue in the right direction.  The university system has announced it plans to offer more in-person classes starting in August, citing the rising number of people getting vaccinated as a main reason. 

UIS has been following COVID-19 testing and United in Safety protocols that have kept its seven-day rolling positivity rate below 1 percent for most of the fall and spring semesters, well below national and regional averages, according to a university news release.

“UIS has worked incredibly hard during the COVID-19 pandemic to prioritize health and safety,” said interim Chancellor Karen Whitney. “Our university community’s compliance with our testing requirement and rapid contact tracing program have been paramount, as well as our focus on frequent, transparent communication with faculty, staff and students to keep everyone well-informed.”

“I would very much like to be safely back in the classroom with students. It is very encouraging to see increased access to vaccines,” said Lynn Fisher, associate professor and chair of the campus senate.  “As students make plans for fall, I encourage them to talk to faculty and advisors about the wide variety of in-person, hybrid and online options at UIS.”

This article appeared in the Illinois Times on March 16, 2021.

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