SUNY Oneonta is coming up on a milestone this week, an achievement that will demonstrate how our community has come together in the fight against COVID. We will administer our 10,000th pool test of the semester during the next few days.
Getting to this point is the result of exceptional planning, organizational agility and a commitment shared across our campus community to get tested weekly. I point to our testing center as an example of the all-hands-on-deck approach that is required to manage the pandemic.
Our COVID Operational Team has implemented a testing program that is safe, efficient, accurate and convenient. Inside the Field House, the designed flow of foot traffic, quick test registration and multiple test stations spaced far apart allow students and employees to move through the center in minutes. Details like designating free parking outside of the Alumni Field House remove barriers to getting tested that might not immediately come to mind.
Thanks to the many members of our Intercollegiate Athletics department and others who keep the line moving — and everyone in it appropriately spaced — and walk us all through the steps of the test each week. It takes dedication to proctor 10,000 tests, especially working around snowstorms.
Thanks as well to our custodial staff for cleaning what is the largest and now must be the most heavily used space on our campus: the Dewar Arena. Our testing center would be impossible without the work they do.
Perhaps most importantly, thanks to each of you who have made getting a COVID test part of your routine. You share credit for the result: our infection rate has remained well under 1 percent so far this semester. We can keep it there.
Committing to test weekly shows that we want everyone here to have the best possible experience this semester. It also demonstrates that even under difficult circumstances, we are a community of care.