After a year of restrictions imposed by the pandemic, Capital University has announced plans to return to in-person learning this fall for all undergraduate and graduate students.
The decision to take steps toward normalizing learning and living was made based on several factors, including: declining COVID-19 cases nationally, statewide, and in Franklin County; vaccine rollout; and conversations with students, faculty, staff, and the Franklin County Public Health commissioner.
“Our conversations around COVID safety and student success data led us to firmly believe that it was important – and possible – to return to an engaged campus with in-person classes and out-of-class co-curricular experiences,” said Provost Jody Fournier. “Our students want to be back. Our faculty and staff want to be back.”
While uncertainty around the pandemic continues and health and safety indicators are being closely monitored, several factors make returning to normalcy a priority.
The post-COVID reopening strategy likely will include the continuation of PPE, symptom tracking, and intentional ventilation, Fournier said, allowing the University to return to the kinds of interpersonal experiences that are such an important part of college life and a signature element of the Capital experience, including reinstating on-campus housing with roommates.
The extensive use of technology in the classroom this past year will be evaluated for whether hybrid classes could successfully be incorporated into specific curriculum.
“We will use technology where students want it and can do well with it,” said the provost. “We have an opportunity to become the premier private residential hybrid university. There may be opportunities for upper-level students to take a limited number of courses in a hybrid format, which could create flexibility in their schedules for internships, research, and study abroad.”
Additional information about reopening campuses this fall will be shared as plans are finalized.