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COVID Update for Employees

Dear Faculty and Staff:

In anticipation of the reopening of campus offices and a return to in-person instruction later this summer, we write to share updates to the college’s health and safety plans.

Vaccine Requirement: 
As foreshadowed in President Foster’s May message to campus, to reinforce our commitment to community health and create equity with TCNJ students, we continue to actively work with the State and unions to implement a vaccination requirement for all employees, including part-time, contract and temporary workers. While these conversations are on-going, we strongly encourage you to upload your proof of vaccination to your Oracle Cloud Account by August 9, 2021. Instructions for uploading may be found on the HR website. Human Resources will confirm by email that your card has been received and verified. To date, over 55 percent of our employees, across all union and non-unit groups, have uploaded proof of vaccination to their Oracle Cloud Accounts. Again, our thanks to all employees who have completed the upload and verification process.

Vaccination Access and Appreciation: We are pleased to provide access to the vaccine. Our COVID-19 testing partner, Bergen New Bridge Medical Center, will hold its next on-campus vaccination clinic on Thursday, June 17, from 1-3 p.m., with dose 2 administered on Thursday, July 15, from 1–3 p.m. Instructions for how to register for the clinic will come under separate cover.

As a token of our appreciation, and to assist the vendors in Campus Town who have weathered a challenging 16 months, we will provide a $25 gift card for use at any Campus Town food or retail establishment to TCNJ employees who have already uploaded a copy of their COVID-19 vaccination certification or who do so by August 9, 2021. (We will also offer a similar token to TCNJ students.)

Return to Work: As President Foster communicated last month, by August 9, 2021 all offices are expected to be open and staffed during regular business hours. While the blanket pandemic-related approval to work from home expires on August 8, vice presidents have the authority to implement new remote work arrangements for their divisions or offices within their divisions when the operational needs of the area will allow this. In addition, employees are eligible to apply individually under the college’s Interim Flexible Work Arrangement Policy.

Indoor Masking/Social Distancing: Consistent with Governor Murphy’s recent executive order, the college is no longer requiring those who have been fully vaccinated to wear masks or maintain six feet of physical distance indoors. (The CDC considers individuals to be fully vaccinated two weeks after they receive the single-dose Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine or the second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.) Those who are not yet fully vaccinated are required to continue wearing a mask indoors and maintain six feet of physical distance. Employee supervisors will be notified when their employees upload proof of vaccination.

Disability-related Reasonable Accommodations: The college provides disability-related reasonable accommodations to eligible employees to enable them to perform their essential job functions. We highlight this for anyone who, because of the pandemic, may need to be considered for an accommodation and is unaware of this option. An upcoming joint message from the Accessibility Resource Center and Office of Human Resources will provide the details and timeline for making these requests.

On-Campus COVID-19 Testing: As was previously communicated by Janice Vermeychuk, director of student health services, fully vaccinated employees whose vaccination record has been verified by Human Resources, are exempt from the mandatory weekly COVID-19 testing requirement. Vaccinated employees may be subject to symptomatic testing, random asymptomatic testing, or regular testing if there is evidence of substantial or high transmission in the community. Employees who are unvaccinated are required to participate in weekly on-campus COVID-19 testing.

Thank you for everything you have done in support of the college and its students throughout this pandemic. We look forward to providing additional information regarding vaccination requirements for all employees to ensure that we are able to protect all members of our community while allowing a return to the in-person experience for which we are known and that has led to the college’s distinctive outcomes.

Sincerely,
Jeffrey M. Osborn
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

James A. Felton III