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Minister of Science Theresia Bauer

A New Approach to the Pandemic

Ministerin Theresia Bauer

Dear university staff and students,

After three semesters of online classes, it is time to return to campus.

University faculty, employees, and students have all worked together to ensure that learning could continue despite the limitations and challenges posed by the pandemic. I would like to once again express my deepest gratitude to everyone who has made this possible through their dedication, passion, and hard work.

However, one thing has unfortunately been absent during these past weeks and months - personal connection. I have met with many students who have confirmed time and time again that they miss the in-class discussions, lively debates, study groups, sports clubs, communal meals, and parties that make student life so special.

That is why I want to share with you our plans for the future. Back in July, we put adopted a legal framework that allows for institutions of higher education to plan for a winter semester that will largely return to on-campus learning, supplemented by some online classes. I would like to thank everyone who has so enthusiastically stepped up to help us with this challenging but important work.

I know that we are all looking forward to a safe return to campus as soon as possible. Quality of life for students is going to improve this upcoming semester with a return to on-campus learning and face-to-face interaction. This transition will be further facilitated by policy changes on the federal level which are expected to take place in mid-September. These changes will ease restrictions for people who can show that they have been vaccinated, have recovered, or have recently tested negative for COVID-19. By the time the new policy is in place, every person eligible to be vaccinated will have had the opportunity to do so.

I therefore appeal to you once more: please go get vaccinated. Help us to ensure that rising case numbers will not force us back behind our computer screens. And because we expect to return to campus next semester, I would like to make a further appeal to you: Please come back to campus, take advantage of the on-campus activities and everything which the student services organizations have to offer, particularly the student residence halls. Help us make colleges and universities the lively places they were before the pandemic! Everything is in place to ensure that we can return to campus safely and responsibly, despite the pandemic.

I wish all of you an enjoyable and relaxing summer and look forward to seeing you on campus once again.


Theresia Bauer MdL

Ministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Kunst