• Published Date:
  • Categories: Bison S.A.F.E.: University Pandemic Response

Dear Howard University Community,=20

We write to you with the sincerest hopes that your first week back on campus set a positive foundation for a fulfilling and productive semester. As our community continues to show its resilience in the face of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we are proud to report that students and employees are responding to new municipal and University safety requirements with overwhelming participation.

To date, 98 percent of on-campus students and 95 percent of on-campus employees have provided evidence of being fully vaccinated, with religious and medical accommodations being granted.

More than 6,100 PCR tests were administered by the Blackburn Building and Stokes Library testing locations during the first week of classes. Over 13,500 attestations for the Bison S.A.F.E. app were completed in week one, and we are well on our way to exceeding that number in week two, as more of our campus community registers and completes the health attestation.

The College of Arts and Sciences, School of Communications, and College of Nursing and Allied Health Sciences have emerged as our campus leaders in compliance with the mobile application attestation program. We look forward to
all other schools and colleges exhibiting excellence in their Bison S.A.F.E. completion rate, and we will help them to do so via our Bison S.A.F.E. ambassadors. We thank our students, faculty, staff and administrators for their diligence in keeping our campus safe and encourage everyone to continue keeping our campus community safe.

Our efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in our academic, residential and research facilities complement the steady decline of positivity rate in the District of Columbia. Throughout the city, key metrics of surge indicators are improving. The daily case rate in the District of Columbia has dropped precipitously to 80.1 cases per day, and the hospitalization rate is at approximately 5 percent, indicating that the district is well passed the omicron peak.

On campus, we have documented a significant decrease in COVID-19 positivity, from 22.1 percent to 9.97 percent to 4 percent over the past three weekly periods. As has been the case throughout the pandemic, the rate of positive cases on campus has been significantly lower that what has been observed in the community. This trend has also been observed in other academic institutions. This is in large part secondary to our robust COVID-19 mitigation strategies, vaccination and booster mandates, masking policy, and regular testing.

To ensure continued progress, we remind you of the updated protocols for vaccination mandates, testing, symptom reporting and social distancing.

PPE Availability
In addition to the Howard University Service Center, you may get masks from the Office of the Dean in any academic department. Additionally, we have expanded pick-up locations across campus to include the following locations:

  • Armour J. Blackburn Center lobby
  • Mordecai Wyatt Johnson Administration lobby
  • West Campus
  • Howard University Bookstore

PPE includes free N-95 masks, surgical masks, face shields and gloves. If you have an unmet PPE need and cannot find the right person to assist you, please send an email to HUCares@howard.edu, and we will ensure you get the assistance you need.

Air purifiers, mobile hand sanitization stations and other equipment are available for your use. If you require any equipment for your classroom or office, please make the request to Physical Facilities Management by calling (202) 806-1000.

The offices managing residence life, facilities management, environmental health and the hospital are always ready to provide accurate information and guidance on best practices for both individuals and the institution to protect public health and safety. If you have comments, questions or concerns about COVID-19, the Bison S.A.F.E. app and/or COVID-19 protocols, the University's guidance can be found here.

Thank you for all you have done for nearly two years, and over the last week, to move Howard forward together for a growing positive safety culture for work and learning.

Excellence in Truth and Service,

Department of Public Safety
Office of Environmental Health and Safety

Office of the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
2400 Sixth Street, NW, Suite 428
Washington, D.C. 20059