Taped Lectures, Workplace Flexibility among Changes as BU Adjusts for Spring Classes
Taped Lectures, Workplace Flexibility among Changes as BU Adjusts for Spring Classes
In-person classes will resume January 20; students to be tested twice weekly for COVID; some changes will be reassessed on February 18
Seeing surging cases of COVID-19, but with far milder symptoms than previous strains of the virus, Boston University officials said Wednesday that in-person classes will resume as planned on January 20. But recognizing the emotional toll and daily challenges the Omicron variant is having on individuals and families, they also announced a number of adjustments for students who miss classes because of a positive test, and for staff and faculty who test positive or have caregiving responsibilities.
The surge in cases nationwide has prompted some colleges and universities to start the new year by holding classes online for a few weeks, or by delaying the start of classes outright. But many other schools, including BU, are returning on schedule and in person. (The majority of BU’s spring semester programs start on January 20, but graduate programs that started on Monday, January 3, will be remote until January 20.)
“Omicron has complicated the beginning of the spring semester and created a great deal of anxiety among members of our community,” BU President Robert A. Brown says. “We remain guided by the science and the advice of our medical and public health experts.”
He notes that while the Omicron variant has a much higher transmission rate, and BU expects to see large numbers of cases in the coming weeks (on January 4, BU recorded 423 positive tests, 7.7 percent of its results that day), COVID data shows that being vaccinated and receiving a booster shot help prevent serious illness. Both are mandated by BU.
In a letter sent to faculty and staff January 5, Brown said that by starting the semester on schedule, with additional flexibility, he hopes that BU can alleviate some of the understandable concerns and be responsive to faculty, staff, and students as they return.
Highlights from Brown’s letter, as well as a separate letter sent to students, include:
- Undergraduate students will be required to test for COVID twice a week, a change from once per week, as the Omicron variant has proven to be extremely contagious. And starting within the first few weeks of the semester, those tests will be unsupervised—another shift—so students can drop them off more easily.
- Faculty may provide recordings of lectures to students in isolation (through February 18, when this will be reassessed). This is an important change that students clamored for last fall, as it will allow those who are required to isolate or quarantine due to COVID to stay on top of their missed classes more easily.
- Faculty members who test positive for COVID may be allowed to switch to remote teaching while they are in isolation—typically a minimum of five days (also through February 18).
- Faculty and staff who are caregivers for elderly or immunocompromised individuals or who have children, and who experience a disruption due to the closure of day care and schools, can work with their dean or supervisor to make temporary remote or hybrid work arrangements or teach via Zoom (through February 18).
- BU has revised its quarantine and isolation policy to match the new guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Individuals who test positive should isolate for at least five days (not 10, as previously required) if, at the end of that period, they have no symptoms, or if their symptoms, such as a fever, are resolving. Anyone who is a close contact to someone who has tested positive does not have to officially quarantine, as long as they are vaccinated and boosted (or are not yet eligible for a booster). However, masking for 10 days after an exposure or positive test remains critical for the new guidelines.
- Details about booster clinics for those who have not yet received their COVID booster shot—a requirement for the BU community by February 4—will be coming in a letter from Judy Platt, BU’s chief health officer.
- While BU dining halls and publicly ticketed events will continue to serve food, catering will otherwise not be available for on-campus events until at least February 18.
“I think we are seeing a wide variety of strategies to the beginning of this spring semester,” says Anita Barkin, cochair of the American College Health Association’s COVID-19 Task Force. “Some schools are opting online for two weeks, others are saying no, this is a mild disease and they want to plan on going forward, with some flexibility. They are trying to assess their capacity for dealing with widespread illness and how to manage it, and hoping they will be able to get through it.”
One reason why schools are responding to the new variant with different strategies is that not all states have the same protocols in place. Some states do not allow mask mandates or vaccine requirements, Barkin notes, so they may have to be more cautious. But she says a school like BU, which has a layered mitigation strategy, “stands a better chance of being successful than schools that don’t,” before quickly adding: “But none of us have a crystal ball on this.”
Another factor has been the mental health toll on students of online learning and the loss of personal interactions. Some experts have cautioned that trying to protect students from the physical toll of COVID could, at the same time, create an entirely new mental health epidemic of young people suffering from anxiety and depression.
The latest data from the CDC shows that while COVID is now spreading faster than ever, cases are far less severe than previous strains and the most protected people—those who are vaccinated and boosted—are seeing no symptoms or only mild infections. After a fall semester when the positivity rate on campus typically hovered above or below 1 percent, BU saw two days last week where the case positivity rate surpassed 7 percent. “We expect similar infection rates as we start back in January,” Brown wrote. “Mask wearing continues to be the most effective means of decreasing the spread of the virus.”
If the virus continues to evolve in this direction, it may become more of a nuisance like influenza or other viruses that cause predominantly upper respiratory tract symptoms.
Anthony Fauci, the US government’s top infectious disease doctor, said in an interview January 2, that the new focus nationwide should not be on the case numbers, but on the severity of symptoms hitting those who test positive. “As you get further on and the infections become less severe, it is much more relevant to focus on the hospitalizations as opposed to the total number of cases,” Fauci said. “The real bottom line that you want to be concerned about is, are we getting protected by the vaccines from severe disease leading to hospitalization?”
Most research has shown the answer to be yes. Several major studies have shown that the earlier Delta variant was far more likely to cause hospitalization than the current Omicron strain, which is accounting for almost 60 percent of all new cases.
“There is growing evidence that the Omicron variant is less able to replicate in the lungs but better able to grow in the upper airway,” says David Hamer, School of Public Health and School of Medicine professor of global health and of medicine. “This may explain why severity is lower, plus the impact of vaccination, but transmission is greater. If the virus continues to evolve in this direction, it may become more of a nuisance like influenza or other viruses that cause predominantly upper respiratory tract symptoms, with some systemic symptoms like fever, myalgias, headache, and fatigue.”
Hamer says that because spring semester classes come right after the holidays, when people gathered in larger groups indoors, January is likely to be a tough month with a lot of new infections and a need for extra precautions in public places and in homes. He predicted that the surge will taper in four to six weeks, and even though new waves are possible, it will reach a point “where there is reasonable control of the disease through vaccination, widespread testing, isolation and quarantine, and early treatment of high-risk individuals to reduce their risk of hospitalization.”
Eventually, he says, COVID will resemble the annual flu season, where vaccination, rapid testing, and medications help control outbreaks.
“With the effort of all members of our community, we successfully completed the fall 2021 semester,” Brown wrote. “I am grateful to everyone for your important contributions to this effort and the extraordinary work that was needed to have a semester that enabled many in-person interactions.” He added: “With our reliance on the science and with our flexibility and resilience, we have reestablished the Boston University community and continued our missions of education and research. We will continue to follow this approach as we begin the spring semester.”
Thank you for this article. Out of curiosity sake, can you share what our sequencing efforts have revealed over the past month? When, for example, was Omicron first detected on our campus? What proportion of our positive cases have been Omicron and how has that evolved to date?
Will the university begin providing KN95s or N95s for everyone, since we know that cloth masks don’t work against Omicron? Or at least can the university provide and require surgical masks? I’m really uncomfortable being in a classroom with people wearing cloth masks, especially now that the quarantine period is being shortened too.
With all of these precautions in mind, it’s concerning that staff who previously worked remotely with great success are required to be on campus during intersession at a normal schedule. Students are not on campus, so a residential campus looks different during break. With the high cases we’re seeing around the holidays, it’s disheartening that staff were not given an option to work remotely during these few weeks in consideration of our own health.
I agree. Harvard and MIT have directed staff to work remotely if possible during this time. It’s nice to see that those institutions consider the health and well-being of their workforces.
Thanks for your leadership President Brown ! You are in an unenviable position and I appreciate the reasoned manner in which BU has carried on during the pandemic. I feel my daughter has had at least a semblance of the college experience at BU, unlike that offered by many other institutions.
The Fall 2021 semester was successful because the daily percent positivity remained under 1% (typically below .3%) the entire semester.
As of January 5, the we’re at 9% positivity.
How can the administration justify sticking to the same protocol when the circumstances are so drastically different?
I wish we were remote for a few weeks but hey, I don’t make the rules. Also testing twice a week is insane, especially given how long lines to test usually are and other things students have to do. If everyone is vaccinated and boosted at this point and the quarantine period is shorter, testing twice a week seems odd to me. These guidelines are super weird but let’s see if it will work. Only time will tell. Thank you for the informational article about what students and faculty are walking into for the start of the semester.
I am in complete agreement with those who are questioning the university’s decision to start in person during this surge. Starting off remotely even for just a couple of weeks could put us on the other side of the surge, and it would provide the breathing room needed to see where BU is with spread and the number of cases, and we could avoid how disruptive this will be to the functioning of the university. So many people are going to be infected at the same time that it may necessitate a temporary shutdown anyway. Even with asymptomatic cases of Omicron, developing long Covid is a real possibility. The mental health of those who really don’t want to contract this virus is being ignored. At least please provide a remote option for those who feel that they need it. The infrastructure is in place, and it has been done before. Not everyone shares the same risk tolerance. And, N95 masks should be required everywhere indoors, and the university should be providing them.
As a parent of student . I agree with other concerned students remote option to get to other side of this quick moving virus would be a better option to keep more students safe and healthy. Also it will help to keep a lower number of people in the local hospitals which are currently overloaded. It is a huge concern that people may not get the best quality care because hospitals are to full . I think it’s a responsible move to help the hospital systems also. Just a couple to few week delay for in person learning could help both situations tremendously at this point . The students will stay safe remotely which is most important at this point in time.
I would like to add to my previous comment above . Remote learning for first few weeks will help to keep students and staff healthy . Few weeks can be the difference in helping with less people getting sick and having to be stuck in dorms remote anyway. That type of situation could be even more disruptive to learning having a roommate sick , having to find a place to stay if they are sick, having to get medical care if you yourself are sick especially if you can’t go home and need help. It’s a lot of stress for students and staff alike to focus on work and being afraid of getting sick at the same time . Mainly because this virus is spreading like crazy and hospitals are too full at the moment as it is. I’m sure students and staff will feel safer when this virus slows . A few weeks remote will keep students safer during this high volume omicron case stage as I said until it slows . We dont want covid to control us but unfortunately at the moment it is. That’s the reality of it.
As a parent of a college and elementary school students and as a pediatrician I applaud BU to act in accordance to the scientific evidence and resume classes in January. This decision is not going to be approved by 100% of the BU community, but we have learned that this epidemic has generated strong individual opinions (some not even based on any scientific data), therefore it is up to strong, confident leaders that base their decision on objective data, current guidelines and scientific data/evidence to determine the plan to follow that will serve best their communities.
Could we at least given an option for remote learning for a couple of weeks of spring semester? Now the test positivity rate is almost 13 percent (when the cmpus is nearly empty) and I’ve seen it increasing everyday by a small increment.
I need to live at a dorm where we share one communal bathroom for each floor and approximately 20 individuals will be infected if one gets it. Considering the size of BU community including Undergrad/grad students, staffs, and faculty members, I’m concerned about our own health and it would be greatly appreciated if we could go remote until the number goes down.
I second the suggestion above – that the University delay in-person instruction for a few weeks after move-in while cases on campus subside. Otherwise, we run the risk of needlessly infecting our faculty and staff, which could bring operations to a grinding halt.
Going forward- now that we know Omicron is evasive to both vaccination and previous infection- will the University be changing our post-infection testing protocol?
Currently, any community member who has recovered from an infection is EXEMPT from all testing for 3 months. The theory was- PCR tests often pick up inactive viral proteins- resulting in a false positive for several weeks post-infection. Antigen testing, on the other hand, does not.
With reinfection and asymptomatic spread of such serious concern with Omicron (and possibly whatever comes next), would it not be prudent to require a series of negative antigen tests for recovered students during that 3 month window?
I would also like to encourage the University to devise a plan to distribute KN95 or better masks on a weekly basis to our community. I saw far too many students with old or otherwise inadequate masks last semester. This variant will not be as easy to control the spread of as Alpha, especially not with ineffective masks in congested classrooms.
I agree with these last posts about delaying in-person instruction and distribution of KN95 and N95 masks to the BU community. Imagine what a 13%+ positivity looks like in a community of nearly 40,000 and how disruptive that could be. What about long Covid and subjecting the BU community to that possibility (which is real with Omicron even if asymptomatic). Many faculty and staff members also have very young children (too young for vaccination), and there is new information that Covid in children significantly increases their risk of developing Type I diabetes. We need to protect the vulnerable and keep our hospitals from being overrun. No one wants in-person instruction more than I do, but at what expense? Correlations cannot be made about controlling the spread as was done with Delta. Apples and oranges. Along with measles, Omicron is the most highly contagious virus we have ever seen. I am having a difficult time understanding why delaying for just a few weeks is such a big deal, and this plan for in-person right off the bat is like throwing everyone into the lion’s den. Many experts are now advising to work from home over these next weeks to a month when possible — and a student’s work is their education, and they should be starting from home/remote. Our local schools started in person and are now shut down/remote due to a massive wave in infections. No cafeteria workers, custodians, enough teachers, nurses, etc. Why not avoid this scenario? BU, please wait for this surge to subside or at the very least provide a remote option for those who feel they need it to feel safe.
With clear data that vaccines + boosters do not protect against infection, it seems unfair to force students to attend in person during a nation-wide surge. Offering LfA at least for the initial 2 weeks of classes allows the individual to choose their own risk level. Insisting that the entire student population travel through a surge, with no flexibility or choice is cruel. Students should be given the right to choose to protect themselves from likely exposure and infection that occurs when requiring all students return in person. Exposure will still be very likely in dorms, cafeterias, and other spaces where masking is not required. Especially when there is a tried and tested method to provide remote option for those who do not feel safe, and might prefer a choice to postpone a return to Boston.
The article acknowledges the “mental health toll” on students as a result of the “loss of personal interactions” – Can we also acknowledge the mental health toll on immuno-compromised employees and employees with chronic illnesses, for whom a “milder” strain of the virus may still result in severe illness? The struggle is real for those who have a medically documented need to limit social interaction. Just because we don’t look “sick” doesn’t me we aren’t.
BU’s response the entire time has been a joke. I am a staff member who has been working IN PERSON the ENTIRE pandemic. I was literally one of the only people on Comm Ave letting students in to get their belongings while everyone else sat at home safely.
My wife is a nurse and the hospitals are doing the same crap. One thing has been clear to me the entire time. BU is prioritizing its bottom line over the lives and safety of the students and staff. Rather than avoid possible shutdowns this will only increase the chances of it happening.
I haven’t received a raise the entire pandemic (the 2% BS doesn’t even cover the cost of living increases) even though I’ve overperformed on every review and called a hero for helping the school function. I have taken on more job responsibilities from coworkers who were let go in 2020, yet they hire no one to replace them. My colleague who literally has been safe at home the entire pandemic gets a raise and a promotion…
This is laughable at this point. The school literally wasted tens of thousands if not more on all this LfA equipment and signage to get rid of it when it is still needed. They don’t plan on contact tracing anymore and don’t seem to care about infections hitting the campus. I am student-facing and the response to noncompliance has also been a joke. Students are maskless around faculty and administrators and they just ignore it and reporting it has led to no action taken.
My anxiety is only getting worse, but the school doesn’t seem to care about the risk this poses to the staff who make it possible to even be on the campus. The science of capitalism is not science, don’t be surprised when staff just start walking off the job.
right on. we need a good general strike. millions of us have been forced to make dangerous decisions every day just to keep food on the table. although that’s getting more expensive, funny how that happens. no hazard pay, no raises. it’s BU and everywhere else. we’re a shambles. when will enough be enough?
Count me in on that strike. The decision to go in person was my final straw.
The email that we got that said ” We also recognize that many people will be close contacts or test positive for COVID-19 despite being vigilant over the next several weeks” was a slap in the face. Hospitals are almost at capacity. Where are we supposed to go if we get sick and need care? Is BU prepared to take care of all of us? They even said they dont have capacity to do contact tracing anymore. Whereas hospitals across the country are urging folks to get vaccinated and stay home if possible, BU is like, come back, we want your money, you’ll get sick, but at least you can’t sue us for your tuition money back.
It is very concerning that BU is not providing any alternatives options for both staff and students who are uncomfortable being in person. I feel terrified going back onto campus with this high of a positivity rate. BU should understand that if they are making uncompromisable decision regarding everyone’s HEALTH, then they are a liability if a “healthy” student or employee infects someone with previous health issues, or if a student or employee themselves DIE from the virus. I do not want to go back to in person school. My personal health is at risk, and I am so disappointed that this institution is breaching personal boundaries. I think I speak for many people when I say the cause of my mental stress stems from not being able to make choices regarding my own body and my own health.
I understand that BU is trying to make things “normal” again. But a pandemic is not normal. A 7% positivity rate (with less people on campus by the way) is not normal. Stop trying to make something that is not normal, normal. It is a reckless and selfish decision for a school to make. I understand that this is a complex situation, and that every institution is trying their absolute best. But I beg BU to at least provide options for people who are uncomfortable.
Time and Time again BU shows how much they do not care for the students and only care about profits. How are you risking 40,000+ lives just for classes that could be done online? Admitting your students will catch Covid but also putting them in a position to catch it is just ridiculous! Other smaller schools nearby went online WHY DOESN’T BU do the same??? It’s not fair AT ALL for the concerned students to go to class with a real life disease spreading. It’s either i go to class and catch Covid or I stay home, risk not being able to learn, and possibly be kicked out of school. This is ridiculous. Shame on BU to the fullest extent for forcing their students to catch covid and deal with the consequences!
Seriously??!! You think ALL classes CAN JUST BE DONE ONLINE??? Not true! The one size fits all solution of just going remote is WRONG! You want to hide away, fine. But that should not be forced on the rest of us who want to live our lives. And are you at home watching Netflix and watching shows where all of those people put their lives at risk for your enjoyment? Do you order food from establishments where those people don’t have remote options? The sense of entitlement is gross.
We have all been trained at this point to think COVID is the end. Yet with vaccines and boosters it is not. Yes, you are going to catch COVID. Just like you will get the flu or a cold. it is inevitable at this point. And for the vast majority it will be mild and we will move on. Even Dr. Fauci has admitted so himself. And what, you are going to just hide for the rest of your life?
HA! This is coming from a student who worked the whole pandemic to support herself because she isn’t privileged like most people at BU. THE ENTIRE PANDEMIC AT THAT. I was probably the one making your food. So no I’m not watching Netflix. Im at work watching people catch it left and right. I caught Covid and it wasn’t pleasant so why would i want to risk myself to be reinfected?? For the first 2 weeks, ALL CLASSES like i said can be done online to prevent a surge. You’re not learning anything too advanced in the first two weeks. If you want to risk your life fine, but don’t tell other students to and then want to call them lazy after when you don’t know them and are anonymous right now. I don’t want to hide away but I don’t want to be in a room with 50+ Kids that tested positive. Risk your life not mine buddy. Watch who you call privileged and entitled because you have no idea who you’re talking to or what people went through during this pandemic and the trauma it could of cause. So just because you weren’t impacted by Covid as much, doesn’t mean others didn’t feel the impact and aren’t scared. You’re extremely inconsiderate right along with BU.
We as individuals also need to practice some common sense. In my observation, some of the infections I hear about were due to individuals going to gatherings when they were not feeling well and not necessarily practicing safe social distancing. So if your not felling well stay home and don’t spread your cold, flu, etc. We should at least do our part to keep sickness from spreading.
What would it look like to dedensify campus by allowing staff to work remotely? Staff have been in person at alarming capacities. This takes a toll on their mental health. As noted above, we have not caught up to the cost of living increases… it’s depressing and bleak to turn up to this. It’s depressing and bleak to witness immunocompromised employees prove they need consideration and care. It’s depressing and bleak that after two years of scrambling we are still in triage mode. What is the plan to catch up to all of the operational debt that protects our functionality. This is not sustainable. Scarcity mindset is preventing advancement and advocacy. Bridging BU shed kore light on the lack of understanding of what individuals work consists of. Peoples skillsets are under utilized, temporary assignments are still in full effect with no trajectory to balance or change.
I can’t keep quiet anymore. I know this will not be a popular post but I need to say this. You all sound like you are entitled to something. Why? What does BU owe you? If you are working here, you know how they operate. You chose to take this job. If you don’t like the way BU is operating, leave. If you are a student here, BU has been transparent the ENTIRE time about what their goals are and that is in person learning. They had a record number of applications last year. Why? THEY STAYED OPEN!!! That is what students want! I am a professor here and I HATE teaching remotely. It is ineffective and the students tune you out 10 minutes in.
If you think BU has done such a terrible job then transfer out. if you work here and don’t like how they have operated, fill one of the thousands of positions at another university or company desperately looking for people. Wages, no argument. BU needs to raise wages. But how they have handled the pandemic….you cannot argue with that. No one has gotten critically ill, their numbers on an open urban campus are incredibly low, and they have been up front with all of their plans. Boston had to post 2 separate positivity rates, one with higher ed and one without because BU and Northeastern were dragging the rate down by almost 2%! How, with effective mitigation measures that proved you could live and operate safely in a pandemic.
Omicron has been proven time and again to be much less dangerous and especially so for vaccinated and boosted individuals. And guess what, BU has requirements for both so what are we doing at this point. Fauci just said that it is inevitable that we will all get COVID. It is only a matter of time. So….why put this off. We have hit pause on our lives for 2 years now. Either we accept that COVID is a part of our lives and learn to live with it, as BU has done a very good job, or we hole up in caves and don’t come out anymore. Yet the stop and start method that all of you seem to be advocating for is not a way to live. People have jobs, kids in school, and lives that they want to live. This is not a one size fits all solution.
Lastly, education and college are not just about lectures in large classrooms that might transfer to a Zoom class easily. BU teaches hands on skills in the arts and sciences that need people in person. Additionally, what about the small businesses that have been ravaged along Comm Ave because we are all so scared to go near another person. Remote learning only exacerbates these issues. And college is a time to form life friendships and cultivate relationships and learn to be an adult. These are not things that can be done from your parents’ basement.
If you are still living in abject fear at this point, I feel sorry for you. I really do. The world can be scary and mean but if we just hide away at this point then it will only get worse. How do we come out of this? We need to trust the science and vaccines and get back to life. Go to the theatre. See a hockey game. Go to Ottos or Canes and have dinner with friends. And if you can’t do that, then don’t. That is fine. However, there is no one size fits all solution and we need to stop pretending there is.
This was seemingly drafted during a moment of passion but I would caution against phrases like, “No one has gotten critically ill,” when BU Today has released articles about well loved staff being lost because of COVID-19.
It also minimizes personal loss people have experienced outside of the University.
“[in person] is what students want!” – I’m a student, and I didn’t want in person from the start. I did not feel safe, and I still am very concerned about this spring semester. There are other students just in the comments here who are also concerned, and who are calling for LfA.
“If you think BU has done such a terrible job then transfer out.” What a mean and unwelcoming thing to say.
I feel very sorry for your students, and I hope I never take a class with you. Based on what you said here, I know you also hope I am never in your class, since you’ve made it clear that you think students like me should leave. I can’t imagine having a professor with such little compassion for other people. For immunocompromised people this isn’t just the world being “scary and mean,” it’s actually life and death. This whole comment is so hurtful to me as someone who lives with someone who is immunocompromised.
Yeah I absolutely agree with you, and I applaud you for replying to him/her. The attitude of “just transfer out” is cruel. We’ve worked our butt’s off in high school to get to BU, and personally BU was always my dream school. I’m beyond grateful to be here, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t have a voice when I feel my health is in jeopardy. It’s called speaking up for yourself when you feel personal boundaries have been breached – aren’t you a professor? It shouldn’t be that hard if a concept to grasp.
Shame on you for saying such a thing, I hope I never take a class with you.
Proving your disabled and obtaining the recognition from the university is already a disheartening experience; arguing that you are Immuno compromised and terrified of what widespread infection can do, regardless of your cautious behaviors, creates anxiety and depression. Students with disabilities attend school knowing that they have needs for their health and well-being, and these needs are not going to be met or considered by their university. I am already suffering from increased anxiety because of how the university handles disabilities; I am petrified to be in person because a small cold for most equals the inability to move or function for myself and others in my situation. The university has disappointed myself and my healthcare team. These regulations only increase my distrust towards faculty and administration.
Oh my god. I’m transferring out as soon as I can. The lack of consideration to provide options for people with disabilities/underlying health issues/or those who are just extremely uncomfortable is astonishing.
I understand that this is a complex situation, many institutions are dealing with financial issues, lack of employees, etc. But come on, if other schools can figure out a way to provide options so can we.
STOP MAKING HEALTH CHOICES FOR EVERYONE, LET US DECIDE OURSELVES WHAT WE ARE COMFORTABLE WITH AND LET US WEIGH OUT OUR OPTIONS. DO BETTER BU!