CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Elms College hosted its fourth annual executive leadership breakfast Friday morning in Chicopee.
As people gathered for the in-person event, it was clear that western Massachusetts is finally starting to return to pre-pandemic life. Elms College president Harry Dumay told 22News what he hopes campus life will look like in the fall, now that the worst of the pandemic is over.
“Because we will have a campus that is largely, if not all vaccinated, we will really be able to physically come back together,” said Dumay. “Having more people on campus, having students in the residence hall with roommates, having in person classes almost full.”
President Dumay said that physical distancing measures for classrooms will also be rescinded for the upcoming school year.
Baystate Health President and CEO Dr. Mark Keroack delivered the keynote address at Friday’s event which focused on “the new normal.” With COVID-19 cases going down and public health restrictions loosening, we are seeing a gradual return to pre-pandemic life.
However, Dr. Keroack says some COVID-era practices are here to stay, “Some of the virtual things we’ve gotten used to, zoom meetings, etc, is going to continue in some way. Virtual approaches to healthcare is going to continue, and also how we get work done. A lot of people have found that they can be quite productive working in a home setting.”
Dr. Keroack added that we will likely have a low number of COVID-19 cases for the foreseeable future but with many people now vaccinated, the virus will not be as disruptive as it was during the height of the pandemic last spring.