Monday’s meeting of the Texas A&M faculty senate included a pandemic update.
The dean of the school of public health, Shawn Gibbs, says they are waiting on the status of vaccine provider applications from the colleges of medicine and pharmacy and by the university’s student health services office. At this time, Gibbs says A&M employees are getting vaccinations through other providers.
Dr. Gibbs also reported as of Monday morning, 80 percent of A&M’s 23,000 fulltime and part time employees had been tested as part of their employment. The positivity rate among full time employees is 2.2 percent and the positivity rate among part time and graduate employees is 2.8 percent. A tweet from A&M Tuesday indicated employee testing was extended through January 16.
Gibbs says testing begins Wednesday for 10,500 on-campus students who are required to be tested. He estimated 3,000 to 7,000 students who live off-campus will be tested and he expects the positivity rate among students to be 3.4 percent.
Interim provost Mark Weichold says there are no changes to how spring semester classes will be conducted, adding “if conditions warrant, I am prepared to change our approach to offering classes. But for right now, I think we’re going to proceed as we had planned for the springtime.”
In addition to in-person classes during the spring, Dr. Weichold says they are looking at some in-person classes this summer.
Weichold also reported that during the fall semester, there was no coronavirus transmission from A&M classrooms.
Click below for comments from Shawn Gibbs and Mark Weichold during the January 11, 2021 Texas A&M faculty senate meeting: