On Monday, the University of Virginia eased limits on indoor and outdoor gatherings in response to lower COVID-19 case numbers in the local area and increasing vaccination rates.
Now, students and others in the University community may gather with up to 25 people indoors, raised from a previous limit of six, and up to 75 people outdoors, raised from a previous limit of 25.
All gatherings, regardless of size, must adhere to UVA’s public health protocols, including mask-wearing and physical distancing.
“This change is possible because members of our community have worked to limit the spread of the virus by wearing masks, staying physically separated, complying with testing requirements, and getting vaccinated as soon as possible,” Dean of Student Allen Groves wrote in an email announcing the change. “As a result, we believe it is now safe to gather in larger numbers, but only as long as we all continue to follow these public health measures as strictly as we have all year.”
Groves and other members of UVA’s leadership team hope that the change will allow student, clubs, organizations, teams and groups of friends to gather safely as they wrap up one of the most unusual academic years in UVA’s history.
“We hope that this change offers University students greater flexibility as we head into the final stretch of the academic year,” Groves wrote. “Please use this new flexibility responsibly, with an understanding that the threat of the virus has not yet passed and many of your peers are anxiously awaiting the opportunity for an in-person element of Final Exercises next month. Thank you for the consistent patience and perseverance you have demonstrated throughout this unique and challenging period for our community.”
Groves, UVA President Jim Ryan and other University leaders have also encouraged students to get vaccinated for COVID-19 as soon as possible. All adults age 16 and up are now eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, and students, faculty and staff members should have received emails inviting them to make an appointment. Anyone with questions can contact the UVA COVID Vaccine Call Center at 434-297-4829 or learn more here.