With New York City’s public and private universities slated to return to in-person schedules for the 2021 fall term, many institutions – including Columbia, NYU, Fordham, and Cornell Tech – have established mandatory vaccination requirements for their student body. Additionally, most of these institutions require or highly recommend faculty and staff receive the Covid-19 injection prior to returning to campus this fall.
In addition to universities requiring immunization, maintaining mask wearing, and upholding physical distancing protocols, what more can institutions do to ensure a physically safe and healthy campus this coming semester? We’ve come up with a few innovative ideas:
Building Technologies for a COVID-Free Campus
There are a number of smart tech, proptech, and building management system (BMS) solutions schools can implement to help promote a more germ-free campus. We covered a number of these solutions in a previous blog post, but for the purpose of this post, we’ll be taking a look at two major modifications universities can make prior to reopening their facilities this fall: UV-C lighting and disinfecting air filtration systems.
Ultraviolet lighting systems are a budding solution for cleaning large spaces like university campuses, especially when ventilation options are limited. According to the CDC, ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) is a usable supplement for inactivating the virus that causes COVID-19. However, there are a number of considerations to make before jumping on the UV-lighting bandwagon. For instance, systems that are not properly installed and operated can cause harmful side effects to human health. We urge all university and district leaders check out this article from EducationWeek prior to implementing UV-lighting systems into their facilities.
Disinfecting Filtration Systems (DFS) have been proven to remove pathogens from and purify the air safely and effectively. What’s more, they can be retrofitted to existing HVAC systems or installed as standalone units that operate in an energy efficient manner. In fact, any of the air filtration systems discussed in our most recent blog post can be used in educational settings and campus capacities. Read our blog on Air Filtration Systems here.
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