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BC Lifts Mask Mandate, Social Distancing Requirements for Vaccinated Individuals

Boston College lifted its mask mandate for vaccinated individuals and rescinded all capacity limitations for on-campus classrooms, workspaces, and outdoor areas on Saturday, according to a May 28 announcement from Vice President for Human Resources David Trainor.

Natalie Dryja, MCAS ’22, said that in light of the announcement, she is looking forward to having a “normal” senior year.

“With everything opening back up around the country and in Boston, I’m really excited to go back to how BC used to be and for a normal senior year,” Dryja said.

Individuals who are not fully vaccinated will still be required to wear a mask where physical distancing cannot be maintained, as well as at all times in the Margot Connell Recreation Center. Trainor also encouraged vaccinated individuals who feel more comfortable wearing a mask to continue doing so.

Trainor also said that all pandemic-related accommodations approved by the Office for Institutional Diversity would expire on May 31. But, the University will continue to offer flexible and remote work opportunities when BC returns to regular operations this upcoming semester. 

For members of the Class of 2024, like Gabrielle Lama, MCAS ’24, this fall will be their first time as a BC student without an on-campus mask mandate or social distancing requirements.

“I think it’ll definitely change the experience,” Lama said. “I think it will allow me to feel more like the BC feel that you always hear about and we haven’t 100 percent gotten, and hopefully we’ll be able to meet even more people this upcoming year because we won’t have any more limitations.”

As announced earlier in the semester, Trainor reiterated that vaccinations would be required for all students, faculty, and staff prior to their return to campus for the 2021-22 academic year. The University will make exceptions for legitimate religious and medical reasons and may make exceptions for those who fill out the COVID-19 Vaccination Exemption Request Form by Aug. 1, he said. 

As of Friday, 54 percent of the Massachusetts population has been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Other universities, such as Harvard University and Boston University, have also mandated that their students get vaccinated before returning to campus. 

“I definitely think it’s the time to make this announcement because there has to be a time to make it,” Lama said. “And we only live for so long, so you’ve got to enjoy your time while you can.”

Featured Image by Nicole Vagra / Heights Staff

June 4, 2021

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