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Thursday, May 13, 2021

Western plans for fall quarter return to campus

Western President Sabah Randhawa announced plans for the school campus to be open in fall 2020 in an email to students, faculty and staff.

By Tyler Brown

Western President Sabah Randhawa announced plans for the school campus to be open in fall 2020 in an email to students faculty and staff.
Western plans to keep summer quarter online, citing Washington Gov. Jay Inslee’s quarantine extension to May 4. Randhawa said in the email he is optimistic for fall quarter based on University of Washington Institute for Health Metrics predictions that novel coronavirus trends in Washington state may have reached their peak.  
This projection, according to the study, is based on the assumption that people will continue social distancing practices and follow public health guidelines to stop the spread of COVID-19.
While Randhawa is anticipating a return to normal classes in the fall, advising and orientation will be offered online only.  This includes academic advising and new student orientation.  
Randhawa also announced that spring commencement in June will be virtually hosted this year in order to follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for social distancing.  Randhawa said in the email there would be more details coming soon.
The email also announced that all summer study abroad programs starting before Aug. 31 have been canceled. This is not expected to impact study abroad programs for fall quarter or faculty-led programs taking place in summer and fall.  
This prediction is dependent on CDC global travel guidance regulations that are subject to change. In the email, Randhawa invited students to check on the status of possible refunds at the study abroad website.  
Western’s summer camps and conferences are canceled this year. This includes all athletics camps and conferences for guests, who will receive full refunds.
“I know these details will be disappointing and frustrating for many of you, but it’s the right thing to do in order to put safety and health first, not only for our community, but for the public we serve,” Randhawa wrote. “I thank you for your grace and understanding as we make our way through this crisis together.”

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