University of Arkansas System Board Reinstates Mask Requirement Indoors

Photo by Chieko Hara

Editor's Note: University of Arkansas Acting Chancellor Bill Kincaid and Provost Charles Robinson penned a letter to the campus community to provide an update after the U of A Board of Trustees issued the new mask requirement earlier today.


Dear Campus Community: 

In the light of the recent surge of COVID-19 cases due to the Delta variant, the U of A Board of Trustees issued new guidance related to our mask policy today. 

Effective immediately, masks will be required indoors (in all university facilities, including classrooms) when at least 6-feet of social distancing can’t be maintained.

There are limited exceptions including dining areas when consuming food and drink, in private offices and residence hall rooms. This goes for everyone, whether you have been vaccinated or not (though we continue to encourage everyone to get vaccinated).   

This updated mask policy reflects ongoing CDC guidelines and is in the best interest of the health and safety of our campus community. Masks are beneficial not just for individuals to protect themselves, but to prevent spreading the virus to others. This is especially important as thousands of students, staff and faculty return to campus for the fall semester.   

While this policy is effective immediately, please allow a little time for signs and guidance to be updated and news to spread, particularly to new students and parents during move-in. Your patience and cooperation will be appreciated as we transition back to using masks indoors and limiting the spread of COVID-19. Hopefully this public health measure will only be necessary for a limited period of time.  

Again, while masks are a valuable tool, the most effective way to stay healthy is still this: please get vaccinated. As you may have seen, today we launched a vaccination incentive effort for students with some impressive prizes to encourage vaccination this semester. Drawings will be held weekly starting Sept. 1. Please help us spread the word about this great opportunity! 

Thanks for all you are doing as we continue to prepare for a safe and rewarding in-person semester.  

Sincerely, 
Bill Kincaid 
Acting Chancellor 

Charles Robinson 
Provost & Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic & Student Affairs 
Professor of History 

Contacts

John Thomas, manager of university communications
University Relations
479-575-7430, jfthomas@uark.edu

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