As announced, beginning May 1 University gate access will return to normal operations. Those who requested an exemption from the SneezSafe daily wellness screening will have their Deacon OneCard access automatically reinstated May 1. Faculty and staff should continue to monitor their health daily and utilize SneezSafe when they need help determining whether they should proceed to campus.
As we near the end of the semester and plan for in-person classes this fall, colleagues who are still working remotely may have questions about their return to on-site work. Colleagues should expect the summer to be a transitional period during which leaders will engage teams and individuals in conversations about staffing plans that prioritize student- and employee-facing interactions. To aid in this process, we have developed these Campus Redensification Guidelines to help managers initiate these conversations.
With commencement less than three weeks away, now is a time to celebrate the numerous accomplishments of our campus community. Colleagues can anticipate receiving an update the week following commencement with additional redensification guidance, 2021-2022 Paid Time Off (PTO) carryover plans, and revised COVID-19 policies. We appreciate your patience as we continue to refine the University’s plans for the fall.
Weekly Wellbeing Tip: Email Timing
Intentional work correspondence can have a big impact on employee morale. Teams can strengthen and respect work-life balance by discussing what email best practices their teams should adhere to. Consider scheduling emails to send during work hours only and turning off notifications during non-working hours.
Read more » Harvard Business Review
On Wednesday, March 31, Group 4 eligibility expanded to include all university faculty and staff, and students living in congregate housing both on and off campus.
With more than 5,000 faculty, staff and students now reporting they have already been vaccinated, Wednesday’s vaccine clinic was the last first- or single-dose clinic to be held on campus for the coming months. Second-dose clinics will continue to be held on campus throughout April for those who received their first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine at an on-campus clinic in March.
We will continue to identify and communicate upcoming community vaccination opportunities, and the University has plans to coordinate transportation from campus to the mass vaccination clinic at the Winston-Salem Fairgrounds soon. Those who have not yet been vaccinated should make an appointment with a community clinic, medical provider or local pharmacy such as:
- Forsyth County Public Health Department
- Wake Forest Baptist Health or Novant Health
- Walgreens or CVS
Once you have been vaccinated, please indicate that you have received a vaccine using the SneezSafe daily wellness screening survey. Even after being vaccinated, everyone is expected to continue to practice safety measures, including wearing a mask and social distancing.
Additionally, the Wake Forest community received a brief update earlier this week regarding the increase of gathering sizes on campus to align with N.C. Executive Order 204.
April is Asian Heritage Month
Throughout April, faculty and staff are invited to take part in upcoming Asian Heritage Month programs, coordinated by the Intercultural Center. Programs will have a specific focus on how to mitigate the effects of anti-Asian xenophobia, racism and discrimination – of which Wake Forest leaders addressed in this message to the campus community.
Learn more » interculturalcenter.wfu.edu
The following is a guest post from James Raper, assistant vice president for health and wellbeing.
I’m not particularly handy on a boat and have minimal talent as a fisherman – both to the chagrin of my father. (I famously attempted to net a fish my father was reeling in, only to knock it off the line). Nevertheless, I often find myself referencing nautical metaphors to make sense of a challenging situation. The last 12 months have taught us many things, including recognizing we each need as many effective tools as possible to make sense of where we’ve been, how we are navigating as a community and what course we might chart as we go forward together.
As we look behind us at the past year, in many ways it may feel like we can no longer see the coastline that we departed in February of 2020. Like Gilligan and his mates on the S.S. Minnow, I’m not sure most of us knew we were going for more than a three-hour tour. Through the myriad challenges and losses and anxieties, we have done this both together and apart. Much of our resulting pain has been shared in private or via a Zoom screen with a loved one, colleague, therapist or minister. I have practiced as a therapist for 19 years, and throughout that time have learned that one of our most fundamental struggles as humans is when we become aware of our feeling of helplessness. Moreover, when we experience grief or trauma, it is our feeling of helplessness and pain that have been highlighted. Virtually all of us have continued to experience some version of this during the last year, with much of this adding on to the trauma that our colleagues from historically marginalized communities already carry. Read more
Updates from HR: Vaccines, operating status, focus groups, TIAA webinars, and Character and the Professions conference
COVID-19 vaccine update
Last Thursday, Governor Cooper announced that those eligible in Group 4, beginning with people with high-risk medical conditions and those who live in certain congregate settings, will be eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine beginning Wednesday, March 17.
All other essential workers in Group 4 – including all WFU employees and students living in residence halls – are expected to become eligible on April 7.
Additional on-campus vaccine clinics are anticipated to be available the week of March 22 to faculty, staff and students with high-risk medical conditions. Colleagues and students will receive more information regarding eligibility and registration this week.
Follow Wake Forest University Human Resources on Instagram and Facebook, where colleagues have shared what the vaccination means to them. You can also share and tag your own vaccine photos with #ThisIsOurShot.
Yellow Operating Status
In light of the continued downward trend in positive cases of COVID-19 on campus, WFU returned to Yellow Operating Status on Friday, March 12.
You can read the full announcement on Our Way Forward.
Got your shot? Update the Employee Survey
The following is a guest post from the Office of Student Engagement in partnership with the Office of Wellbeing and Intercultural Center.
The Wellbeing Office, Intercultural Center and Office of Student Engagement are collaborating to bring Adopt-A-Deac back to the campus! The Adopt-A-Deac program was introduced in the spring 2020 semester to provide individual caring support and outreach to Wake Forest University students during the pandemic. This semester, we are again seeking compassionate faculty and staff mentors to join this network.
Faculty and staff volunteers will be matched with students based on opt-in form responses. Participants will interact with students multiple times a week to respond to questions, connect them with University resources and provide needed support.
Our teams will provide information, resources and training to set you up for success in these partnerships. Our students need us, and we hope you’ll take advantage of this opportunity to help the Wake Forest community!
Faculty and staff volunteers will receive more information soon. Thank you for your time, attention and support!