Dear students, faculty and staff:
A few weeks ago, we encouraged all faculty, staff and students to get a COVID-19 booster shot. Due to recent increases in COVID-19 cases, evolving information about the more transmissive Omicron variant, and new CDC guidance, the University of Illinois System is now requiring that all faculty, staff and students get a COVID-19 booster shot as soon as they are eligible (see the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for details on eligibility).
There is now significant evidence that vaccinations plus boosters are effective at preventing infections from developing into serious illness.
Those who have already received exemptions from the vaccination requirement for medical or religious reasons will be exempted from the booster requirement. For employees covered by a union contract, guidance will be implemented at the universities through the applicable collective bargaining processes.
Please look for further, more detailed, communication from your university on boosters and other safety measures applicable to each campus.
Throughout the pandemic we have worked diligently to keep our universities and their surrounding communities safe. Now, in the face of this new variant, we must again act collectively to protect both the health and safety of our communities and the quality of the educational experience that makes the U of I System truly extraordinary.
We will continue to monitor our policies, adjusting where appropriate based on advances in scientific understanding and updated guidance from public health authorities.
Thank you again for your vigilance and your commitment to each other. I hope you had a joyous holiday season and a restful break.