INFORMATIONAL: Planning for Fall 2021

April 21, 2021

Dear Members of the Brandeis Community:

We are writing today to provide an update on our planning for the Fall 2021. Brandeis is deeply appreciative of the efforts made by our faculty and staff over the past several months. This includes our dedicated essential staff as well as faculty and staff who were asked to work remotely.

As we look forward to welcoming our students back to campus in the fall, the expectation is that our collective resourcing will require a blended approach by most departments: to serve Brandeis’ educational mission and department operations as well as to consider the benefits of flexibility for our community.

Over the last year, many employees have quickly adapted to new modes of work. This newly gained flexibility has benefitted our faculty, staff and the University. While we continue to build on what we have learned about remote working over the past year, we recognize that many departments will need faculty and staff regularly on campus to support students and on-campus operations for the Fall 2021.

What this means for our Fall 2021 semester is a return to on-campus, in-person instruction for the majority of our classes. It also means a return to the full range of on-campus living, learning and research opportunities that are a vital part of the Brandeis experience. Determining the appropriate operational support needed by each department will be done by department leaders, in consultation with faculty and staff, and with guidelines provided by Human Resources and Facilities Administration.

The health and safety of our faculty and staff remain a priority. Brandeis will continue to follow state and federal COVID guidance as well as update and enforce required Brandeis health and safety protocols. This includes the Campus Passport, testing, the Daily Health Assessment and training. Face coverings, physical distancing and good hand hygiene also continue to be important tools for mitigating the spread of the virus.

To help the Brandeis community plan for a Fall 2021, we have developed a website to provide information and guidance for faculty, staff and managers. The main themes to highlight include:

For Faculty: The expectation, for schools other than Rabb, is the vast majority of classes will be in-person or have a strong in-person component.  Faculty are encouraged to engage in conversations with their Department Chair or Dean regarding the Fall 2021 course offerings and instruction modes.

For Managers, Department Leaders and Staff: Department leaders and managers will be assessing and documenting the department staffing plans and space needs for each area including the appropriate balance of on-campus and remote positions. Managers and staff are encouraged to engage in conversations as these plans are being developed.

Please review the Fall 2021 Planning website in detail and speak with your Dean, Department Chair, Vice President or manager if you have questions or concerns. We will be providing more information and updates to the website in the coming weeks.

Thank you for the continued support and dedication to Brandeis.  

Carol Fierke
Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs

Stew Uretsky
Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration

Lois Stanley
Vice President, Campus Planning and Operations

Robin Switzer
Vice President of Human Resources