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URI tells students to go home as soon as possible. But, they are fully open with no change in exams.

On Friday, students received an email from URI administration telling them to go home as soon as possible, but beginning with saying they are fully open and do not expect to shirt to remote or change exam schedule. Here is their memo:

URI is fully open and we do not expect to shift our final exams to a remote experience.

Students should go home as soon as possible so that they limit the spread of COVID-19 and avoid exposing family members to COVID-19 during the holidays and winter break. 

We know that you want to stay healthy and safe so that you can fully celebrate this special time without bringing a dangerous and unwanted guest like COVID-19 to  gatherings. The best way to do that is to leave your off-campus rental house, campus residence hall or Greek house as soon as you can after your last in-person final examination.

Gathering in large numbers with those outside your living pod could spread the virus and put family members and members of the Rhody community at risk. With COVID-19 cases skyrocketing in Rhode Island and across the country, we strongly recommend that you limit the number of people and groups with whom you gather.   

Know Before You Go 

As part of our Know Before You Go campaign, we remind you to get tested before you leave for home. Here is the latest testing schedule. Getting tested before leaving is also another way to protect your families and friends. You’ll get your URI test results within 48 hours so plan to be tested two days before planned travel. 

Get your booster shots to help keep URI, friends and family members healthy. Finally, please get your vaccination booster shots, either here on campus, at a local pharmacy or when you arrive home. We are discussing whether the University will mandate booster shots for next semester. However, we know that to be fully protected, you should get a booster as soon as you are eligible. Getting your booster shots now or when you head home for winter break will make it easier for your return if the University moves to a mandate. Boosters also offer additional protection. We understand that many students may only have become eligible for booster shots recently and that they may want to wait until finals are over before getting the booster.

Please click here for up-to-date vaccine clinic information and availability. 

Additionally, here are links to convenient retail and government sites to make it easy for you to schedule your shots: • CVSWalgreensWalmartStop & Shopvaccinaterivaccines.gov 

Dr. Nicole Alexander-Scott, director of the Rhode Island Department of Health, said yesterday during Gov. Dan McKee’s press briefing that Rhode Island is seeing some of its highest numbers since the beginning of the pandemic. She also said booster shots are vital right now because of the prevalence of the Delta and Omicron variants.

The one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine, and the two-shot Pfizer and Moderna series are now only about 35 percent effective against serious illness and hospitalization, while booster shots raise that effectiveness to around 75 percent. 

We wish everyone a healthy holiday season!