YU Plans In-Person Return for Fall 2021
Full in-person instruction and operation will return to Yeshiva University for Fall 2021, announced President Ari Berman in an email to students on Apr. 28. Additionally, the university will require all returning students in graduate and undergraduate school to be fully vaccinated by the opening of the fall semester.
The email stated that the planned shift to in-person instruction is due to the increased efforts regarding the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine on a regional and national level. In addition to classes, the university plans to offer “more on-campus activities” and offer more space in university housing. The university will institute “appropriate health and safety modifications.” Details regarding safety measures were not specified in the email, including whether masks will be mandated indoors.
According to the 2021-22 academic calendar, there will be remote instruction for certain sets of days in both the fall and spring semester, such as the five school days between Rosh Hashanah and Simchat Torah.
Before they return to campus, students will require full COVID-19 vaccination. Berman stated that “medical and religious exceptions will be considered” for vaccinations, but the email did not explain what constitutes a medical or religious exemption. The university will aid in the vaccination efforts of international students who cannot be adequately vaccinated in their home countries.
On April 22, NYC officials announced that all NYC operating vaccination sites will begin offering walk-in appointments for all New Yorkers, including those who work or study there, ages 16 and older. Three days later, on April 25, Vice Provost for Student Affairs Dr. Chaim Nissel emailed all YU students that “effective immediately, the Covid vaccination site on the Wilf campus can accept walk-ins for New York residents, including students attending school in New York, who are over the age of 16.” The vaccination site is open Sunday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m and is expected “to run through June.”
Some students expressed excitement following the announcement. “I was so happy to read President Berman's announcement about in-person classes next semester,” Justin Carl (SSSB ‘23) told The Commentator. “Rabbi Adler’s shiur has been held in person for a while now and I have found it to be much more enjoyable and productive; I’m looking forward to being able to continue my afternoon studies in person as well. It will be refreshing.”
Berman said that more information will be coming out in the coming weeks which will be posted on an FAQ section on the university’s website.
This is a developing story.
Editor's Note: This article was updated on April 30 to include details about remote instruction for the 2021-22 academic year.
Photo Caption: Full in-person instruction and operation will return to Yeshiva University for Fall 2021.
Photo credit: Yeshiva University