AUC Prepares for a Full Return to Campus this Fall
The American University in Cairo (AUC) is preparing for a return to full face-to-face instruction for all undergraduate and graduate classes this fall. To ensure the health and safety of AUC community members, plans for a full return to campus include maintaining social distancing and wearing face masks, along with providing proof of COVID-19 vaccinations. Plans for students’ return to classes include allotting classrooms and times for every course and section on campus while making sure students in these classes are sitting 1.5 meters apart and class times are widely spaced out.
Shereen Shaker, vice president for management and operations at AUC, said: “There is a lot of work going on, including changing the setup of the classrooms to maintain social distancing and updating all the signage in classes. We are also providing few outdoor areas for student-faculty discussions.”
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, a task force led by Ahmed Tolba ’97, ’01, associate professor of marketing and chair of the Department of Management at AUC School of Business, has worked to facilitate the best and safest mode of study for the past four semesters. The task force is extending the time slots for classes over two extra days, including Saturdays and Tuesdays, to safeguard the safety and health of students. Some classes will be transformed to dual delivery, adopting a hybrid model, where half the class will attend in person, and the other half will participate over Zoom. The halves will switch out during the week.
Tolba said that after a few weeks of hard work, the task force was able to make it so that 100% of the sections are accommodated for in the new plan.
AUC has collaborated with the Ministry of Health to provide vaccination for faculty, staff, and students, who have signed up on the government registry to receive the COVID-19 vaccinations. To ensure the safety and health of all community members, only individuals who have submitted their proof of vaccination, through the University’s newly established electronic system, will be permitted to access campus. Community members are encouraged to receive their vaccinations at the soonest.
AUC will provide accommodations for individuals with medical exemptions or who have other reasons not to get vaccinated. Students with medical issues may request an exemption request presented with a medical report by their physician to the AUC Clinic to receive final confirmation for their exemption.