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Dr. Costas Tsatsoulis, vice chancellor of research and graduate studies, sent the following message to faculty and staff on Jan. 14:
In early March last year, we made the necessary and difficult decision to close most of our research labs. As we began understanding the pandemic better, we developed protocols and rules for opening our research facilities to faculty, students and staff. A committee composed of faculty and staff reviewed requests for lab openings and established access parameters. The committee received guidance from our medical personnel, environmental and health safety, and facilities staff.
I am happy to report that there have been no documented cases of COVID-19 spread through our research laboratories and activities. This is due to the diligence of everyone involved in the process: the ad hoc research laboratory committee, the colleges and departments, the centers, environmental and health safety, facilities, health care staff, faculty and staff researchers, and our students working in the laboratories. Everyone played an important role in keeping us healthy.
We will soon start a new semester, with many students returning to campus and with new students joining us. I want to remind everyone that the virus is still with us. We cannot afford to be lax. We must continue to be vigilant in the use of our research laboratories, cleaning supplies, protective equipment, social distancing, ensuring controlled access to labs and following the rules regarding occupancy rates.
Let’s continue our streak of zero research lab-associated cases for one more semester!
Vice Chancellor of Research and Graduate Studies