SEPTEMBER 8, 2021 — Editor’s note: The following message was sent today via email from President Taylor Eighmy, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Kimberly Andrews Espy and Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President for Business Affairs Veronica Salazar Mendez to all faculty, staff, students and families:
On August 11 we announced adjustments to the beginning of UTSA’s fall semester, shifting most face-to-face instruction to online delivery for the first three weeks. This was done primarily to manage the recent COVID-19 Delta variant surge here in San Antonio, balancing an open campus with a mix of course and work modalities to optimize learning, teaching and research while protecting the health of our community.
We have remained in constant communication with our colleagues at UT Health San Antonio, as well as infectious disease experts at San Antonio Metro Health, UT System and government agencies. We followed daily reports from local public health experts, modeled forecast trends from IHME for Texas, CDC composite modeled forecast trends for Texas and for Bexar County, the State of Texas confirmed cases database, the Bexar County public health dashboard maintained by San Antonio Metro Health (updated yesterday for the August 28–September 3 timeframe), and our own dashboard indicating direct campus impact.
Based on the most recent data and consults with our advisors, including conversations yesterday, we understand that the most important leading indicators—positive tests, positivity rates and new hospital admits—have been decreasing here in Bexar County. Encouragingly, we appear to be past the peak of the COVID-19 Delta variant surge.
Moreover, UTSA’s contact tracing and quarantine management programs are in good shape, and the positivity rates within our Roadrunner community are below that of Bexar County. Finally, we can report our UTSA community vaccination rates as of last week: approximately 76% of faculty and staff and 62% of our students have gotten at least one vaccine dose. While this is positive news, we continue to encourage everyone in our Roadrunner community to get fully vaccinated.
Given these data, we believe that it is appropriate to proceed with ending our modified course delivery period on September 12 as planned. Face-to-face instruction components will begin for all traditional in-person and hybrid courses starting on Monday, September 13, according to the course modality and schedule as listed in ASAP. We will have a tent set up in the Sombrilla next week to assist any students who need help finding their in-person classes.
In addition, we will continue to provide robust on-campus services to our university community as we have done since the semester began.
As a reminder, these important public health protocols will continue for the rest of the semester:
Rest assured we will continue to work with our colleagues at UT Health San Antonio to closely monitor the status of the pandemic—especially as we move into the late fall and winter months. We will adjust our operations as needed should the situation warrant.
Roadrunners, though the beginning of this semester had its challenges, we were so proud to see all of you show your continued resilience and adaptability. Above all, we appreciate your persistence and fortitude as we worked through this surge.
UTSA students, faculty, staff and community members are encouraged to raise their voices and participate in the upcoming joint primary runoff election. Any registered Bexar County voter may vote at the H-E-B Student Union Bexar Room (HSU 1.102).Bexar Room (HSU 1.102), H-E-B Student Union, Main Campus
Adult Mental Health First Aid consists of 6 hours of instructor-led training, in which teaches adults how to recognize the signs and symptoms that suggest a potential mental health challenge, how to listen nonjudgmentally and give reassurance to the individual, student/colleague, who may be experiencing a mental health challenge, and how to refer a person to appropriate professional support and services at UTSAJohn Peace Library (4.04.12C), Main Campus
Refusing to Forget is a collaborative effort to examine and expose the devastating impact of state-sanctioned racial violence throughout the early 20th century in the Texas Borderlands. This will be a two-day workshop.Gregory Luna Room, Buena Vista Building, Downtown Campus
Join fellow UTSA accounting alumni for this fun-filled event that includes breakfast, a round of golf, an awards luncheon and great prizes. All proceeds from the tournament benefit student scholarships.Canyon Springs Golf Club, 24405 Wilderness Oak, San Antonio, TX 78260
UTSA students, faculty, staff and community members are encouraged to raise their voices and participate in the upcoming joint primary runoff election. Election day is Tuesday, May 24. Any registered Bexar County voter may vote at the H-E-B Student Union Bexar Room (HSU 1.102).Bexar Room (HSU 1.102), H-E-B Student Union, Main Campus
The Faculty Coffee Chat is designed to provide faculty members the space to discuss current issues they are facing in an inclusive and supportive environment.Virtual Event
These sessions are focused on incoming Freshman who are attending the UTSA Summer Orientation and are intending to major in areas within the College of Liberal and Fine Arts! We'll have important information and giveaways for you - come meet us.Willow room (SU 2.02.1), Main Campus
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.
We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.
UTSA is a proud Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) as designated by the U.S. Department of Education.
The University of Texas at San Antonio, a Hispanic Serving Institution situated in a global city that has been a crossroads of peoples and cultures for centuries, values diversity and inclusion in all aspects of university life. As an institution expressly founded to advance the education of Mexican Americans and other underserved communities, our university is committed to ending generations of discrimination and inequity. UTSA, a premier public research university, fosters academic excellence through a community of dialogue, discovery and innovation that embraces the uniqueness of each voice.