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UCI Forward is our commitment to the well-being of our community as we ramp up campus operations. Working together, each of us doing our part, we can move UCI Forward.

June 14 - Updates on COVID-19

Section 1

Duck in front of Infinity Fountain

Infinity duck. Photo by Ian Parker


Don’t ditch your masks at UCI just yet

Because of a timing discrepancy between the state’s general reopening (on Tuesday, June 15) and Cal/OSHA’s new workplace mask rules (which take effect later this month), UCI will default during the interim period to a standard where all persons on campus must wear a face covering and practice 6 feet physical distancing, regardless of their vaccination status. For more information, see Provost Hal Stern’s message to the campus.

No campus cases over weekend*

No student residents or on-campus employees tested positive for COVID-19 from Friday through Sunday. For more information, visit the UCI COVID-19 dashboard.


Zachary Simons, B.A. in psychological science

Zachary Simons’ life would make a very compelling story, and as a prospective novelist with two full-length manuscripts and a third in progress, he would be the first choice to write it. After high school, Simons channeled his love of martial arts into a burgeoning career, opening his own studio teaching Systema, a form of martial arts used by Russian special forces. But it wasn’t meant to be. In 2014, Simons’ life was changed forever when his house and studio were completely destroyed in a fire. It left him physically and psychologically scarred and very nearly claimed his life, were it not for the heroism of his pet rabbit, Peter.

“It’s crazy,” Simons says of the story. “It was the middle of the night, and he jumped up on my face and was scratching and biting me, saying ‘We gotta get out of here.’ If it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t have made it.”

The experience and subsequent recovery led him to begin studying the mental healing process and intricacies of the human psyche. After graduation, Simons may pursue an M.F.A. in creative writing. But for now, he’s happy to spend his free time with his wife, Rachel, and two bunnies, Spike and Petrie Ducky, in their Northern California home.


This section curates noteworthy coronavirus news, trends and opinions. No endorsement by UCI is implied. Note: Some news sites require subscriptions to read articles. The UCI Libraries offer free subscriptions to The New York TimesWall Street JournalOC Register and Washington Post for students, faculty and staff.

How will theme parks verify vaccine status?

There is no requirement for amusement parks to check for proof of vaccination or collect results from a COVID-19 test after the state reopens Tuesday.

Novavax says its vaccine shows 90.4% efficacy

Despite the impressive results, the COVID vaccine’s future in the United States is uncertain and it might be needed more in other countries.


Thirty photos and stories show the transformation of sad-eyed pups in cages to energetic, smiley dogs.


If you have a shoutout, or if you’d like to share what you’ve been up to during the pandemic, send photos and/or words about your COVID-19 vaccination, activities, workstation, volunteering, etc., to marketing@uci.edu or post on social media with the #UCIconnected hashtag.