Colleges in the 2021-2022 Academic Year & Coronavirus (Part 2)

The story says phase 2 starts late winter early spring and includes students but then, later in the story, it says that the university isn’t sure about fall being mask free because they might only have the teachers vaccinated by then. That timing doesn’t seem to match. If starting students in that time period, why would they not all be vaccinated by fall? Plus, what about the freshmen who won’t be on campus, especially the OOS ones? How do they get the vaccine if they aren’t on campus or in Michigan? I’m a little confused about whether it’s the university itself that will have vaccines to give the faculty and students. Doesn’t the state decide the order?

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Michigan medicine (hospital system) has already been given the OK to start per se. Yes, the time line is a moving target. I heard at a Michigan townhall they hope it will be ready for students come fall. No one really knows but it’s a theory. At least some positive news for professors /teachers coming shortly…


@rosepetal, great news, given the surge, was unclear how things are shifting, but this announcement lends support to the idea that currently announced spring plans will not be rescinded. The Smith numbers are similar to the numbers Williams had in the fall.

For Boulder the plan is to start with medical workers, then at risk, next is k-12 teachers, and then the general population. Professors won’t be a special group because they have seen very low risk of transfer in college classes. They hope to be rolling out vaccines to the general population over the summer. Students won’t be here over the summer and are expected to get their vaccine at home. That’s where it gets tricky because the county and university don’t control that and are reluctant to require a vaccine.

The Amherst Bicentennial page seems to strongly suggest that the college believes we will be back to normal in Fall 2021, or at least normal enough to allow numerous guests to visit campus for in-person events. “We look forward to coming together in person to celebrate as a community in Fall 2021.”


thanks for posting. I am going to continue to be optimistic about fall because I don’t think I can face this winter unless I have that fall to look forward to!!


@homerdog… They are following their state guidelines. This is the phasing they came up with. Also if kids can’t get it at their home states or before school starts then in theory they will receive it at school in the fall. Ie: one other reason everyone will still be wearing masks at colleges etc in the fall… We will learn a lot in the next few months and we should have a better understanding of all of this by spring time.


Interesting that a university already has a planned laid out. That’s great. I guess I thought, since the vaccines will be distributed to the state, it’s the state government who makes the decisions about all citizens in the state. I didn’t expect a university to have control over that but that seems to be what U Mich is saying.

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@Knowsstuff Just curious; being one of the more pessimistic posters on this thread, what do you make of Amherst suggesting that things in Fall 2021 will be normal enough not only to invite all students, but also to invite large amounts of guests to campus for Bicentennial events? Do you think they are being naive?

No… I think you might be misunderstanding. University of Michigan and others like the Henry Ford system hospitals and many others have been allocated to distribute. They are also the largest health systems in the state. Michigan is like ranked the 5th leading hospital in the United States. It is done by the state in conjuction with the hospitals.

Fun fact. Pfizer vaccine is being made in Kalamazoo Michigan and in Wisconsin… Maybe that helps.

In Chicago look for the large health systems to be doing the same…

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Ah. So all hospitals in Michigan following that order in the article.

Not 100 percent sure but I think certain ones are picked to start the process. In Chicago look for Northwestern, UChicago, Rush, Advocate etc to lead the charge. Smaller systems probably won’t is my guess. The article was just highlighting University of Michigans plan for now.

@Rose petal that is nice. I think that anything can be retracted or rethought and that Amherst, like so many other private institutions needs to keep alumni and donors engaged. I truly believe that a lot of this is pure marketing. They obviously do not have any soothsayer capabilities any more than anyone else at this point. Go Mammoths (and I have many family members who are AC alumni). So I definitely want the purple and white to go forward with their big event planning. Buts lets see what happens…


According to ivy coach, ED applications at highly selective colleges are up big this fall (+36% at Cornell, +20% at Duke, etc) due to test optional policies. Combine that with many colleges taking less students this admissions cycle to make up for the gap year students who are coming back next year, it’s going to be a very difficult admit at the top colleges.

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I have not heard any schools say this …if you have heard this, please share specifics as that would be important info. I have heard some schools say there will be no impact on this year’s admissions due to class of 2020 gappers.


I think I disagree with that. These small schools must have a plan and expect things to work out for fall. Their communities are small and maybe more manageable. The NESCAC presidents have their pulse on what’s going on with vaccines. Many or all of them have connections with decision makers in the medical community so I feel like their optimism is true. Both Bowdoin and Amherst were so conservative in their decisions regarding campus life and those two presidents aren’t going to all of a sudden change how they view the pandemic and decide to have positive marketing messages that won’t be backed up by reality. If anything, these two presidents would be likely to be very cautious in their messaging so, if they are signaling that fall will be very close to normal, I believe them.

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@homerdog One person who Biddy has frequently consulted with is David Kessler '73, former head of the FDA, who has recently been selected to serve as one of Biden’s Coronavirus advisors.


I can’t post the article due to TOS.

“As Christoph Guttentag, Duke’s longtime Dean of Undergraduate Admissions, states in a letter to colleagues, “We expect to admit between 800 and 850 students in our Early Decision process, somewhat fewer than normal because of the number of students taking a gap year this year. We expect an Early Decision admit rate of between 16 and 17 percent, and our entering class size (including students returning from a gap year) will remain the same as it has been the last few years — between 1720 and 1730 first-year students.”

Here’s what the article said about number of applications:

Early Decision applications to Duke University’s Class 0f 2025 are up from last year and they are up significantly. ED applications to the Durham, North Carolina-based institution are up by a margin of 20% from this time last year. In fact, Duke set a new benchmark this ED cycle — receiving over 5,000 binding Early Decision commitments. Of these 5,000 ED applicants to the Class of 2025, Duke’s admissions office anticipates admitting between 800-850 applicants. To put this number in historical context, [Duke offered admission to 887 students out of last year’s ED pool a pool of 4,300 applicants. So the university — which attracted a record haul of applications this fall — will be admitting fewer students than normal out of the pool. Indeed it’s a trend we suspect will be consistent”

My last comment is that at Duke for example 60% of the applicants submitted test scores. The million dollar question will be how many students will colleges accept without any test scores this year?

Boston College’s ED admitted students were 40% test optional.


The Cornell Sun reported last spring that the university had no plans to admit more students this cycle, but said nothing about admitting less. They had over 9000 applications in ED this Fall (usually it’s 6K ish). I haven’t seen anything official in how many students they allowed to defer last cycle. For schools looking to keep their numbers stable, it would stand to reason that it’s going to be more competitive this cycle.

Conversely, Purdue said they are planning to admit more students this cycle but they have methodically increased their incoming classes for some time now.