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Weekly COVID Newsletter – April 1, 2021

Posted in: Weekly COVID Newsletter

Weekly Covid Newsletter

The Weekly COVID Newsletter provides the latest information about COVID-19 for the University community. It will be published throughout the semester.

Get Vaccinated! Appointments Are Available for All Higher Ed Workers

Governor Murphy announced last Friday that he is expanding the list of people eligible for COVID-19 vaccines. All higher education personnel will be eligible starting next Monday, April 5.

The University strongly encourages all employees to book a vaccination appointment as soon as possible.

We recommend Essex County because they will vaccinate all eligible people who live or work in Essex, and they have set aside blocks of appointments at the West Orange Kmart for educators only.

Go to This site usually posts new appointments around 8 a.m. For questions, call the Essex County COVID Hotline at 973-877-8456. The hotline will also make an appointment for you, if any are available.

In addition, if you wish, you may sign up online here to receive a text when our “vaccine spotters” discover that there are appointments available with Essex County. Just be ready to move fast to secure your spot when you get the message.

Additionally, for employees who live in New York, the state’s registration site (and a list of vaccination sites) can be found at the NY State COVID-19 website. Of note: New York state will vaccinate people age 16+ starting April 6, and is currently vaccinating those age 30 and up.

Once you have been vaccinated, please remember that it is very important that you report it on Hawk Check.

Celebrating Spring Holidays Safely

With spring comes holidays that bring people together. Religious leaders from the University’s Council on Faith and Spirituality are offering guidance on celebrating safely in a message to the campus community. For more details on how best to manage risk for the spring holidays, see the New Jersey travel restrictions as well as CDC recommendations.

Return to In-Person Education in Fall 2021

The University is developing plans to provide a “new normal” experience for the fall 2021 semester, offering a full range of in-person instruction, student services, and return to full occupancy in the residence halls. Vaccination requirements for the fall will be as comprehensive as the law permits.

Meanwhile, for the spring term the focus on compliance with all safety protocols will continue. For now, the campus community should keep wearing masks, doing Hawk Check and staying home when sick. The most important thing you can do now to protect yourself, your loved ones and the larger community is to get vaccinated as soon as you are able to do so. Remember, all higher education employees become eligible on Monday, April 5 so please, don’t wait. Book your appointment now.

Open Testing

The University has expanded on-campus COVID-19 testing, adding appointments on Wednesdays. The testing site is Webster Hall. Register here.

  • Mondays, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
  • Wednesdays, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Another option is to use is the Passaic County testing site on our campus, open Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. in Lot 60. Use 147 Clove Road, Little Falls, NJ 07424 as your address, so that the University Health Center will receive a copy of your results. The site may be closed during inclement weather, so check with the county before you go. Questions? Call the Passaic County Department of Health Hotline at 973-881-2790.

Remember, when you get tested, be sure to report it on Hawk Check.

An App That Could Help

The State of New Jersey’s COVID Alert NJ smartphone app, which has been downloaded by more than 650,000 users, can alert you if you’ve been in contact with someone who has tested positive. It has a pop-up feature to remind you to report how you’re feeling each day (and you can use that reminder as a way to remember to do Hawk Check, too).

A point of pride about the app: Montclair State students helped test it before the New Jersey Department of Health released it. Please consider adding the app to your phone, and tell your friends and family to do the same. The more people who have it, the better it will work!

COVID-19 Dashboard

The COVID-19 dashboard is updated on Fridays. Visit to learn about the number of cases on campus and the number of tests administered by the University, along with the weekly positivity rate. Starting last week, the dashboard began including information on the number of students and employees who have been vaccinated, as reported to us on Hawk Check.

For More Information

For more detailed information about Montclair State’s response to the pandemic, please visit the Red Hawk Restart website, which has links to our 70-page restart plan, to Hawk Check, the COVID dashboard, and many other resources. The Restart FAQs site has answers to frequently asked questions about health, technology, facilities and human resources topics, and the University Health Center’s COVID-19 site offers health and wellness tips and information about how you can get tested.

You can also email restart-related questions to or health-related questions to

Thank you for reading the Weekly COVID Newsletter, a production of the Office of University Communications and Marketing. Comments and suggestions may be sent to Vice President Joseph Brennan,