Dear faculty and staff,
Today, Governor Walz announced an official “stay at home” order for all Minnesota residents. This means that we are to stay home and limit movements outside of our homes to only essential needs.
However, as part of his order, the governor has declared educational activities and services as essential, which means the 37 colleges and universities of Minnesota State are exempt from this order. Campus-based essential services needed to support our students will be staffed by a limited number of employees on campus. Instruction and services will resume, as scheduled, on either March 30 or April 6 as previously announced. All the hard work you have been doing over the past two weeks will come to fruition. It was indeed a herculean task for all of you to get ready to resume instruction in alternative modes. Your passion, commitment, and energy has been both humbling and inspiring to me as you’ve positioned yourselves to take our students across the finish line. All classes will be delivered using alternative modes, and campuses will remain closed to the public but students can access the campus, if needed, for services not accessible from home.
It will be important at this time that we provide maximum flexibility for faculty and staff to do their work within a safe environment. If you need to be on campus please follow strictly all the social distancing protocols and other safety precautions. Our top two priorities remain protecting the health and safety of our faculty, staff, and students, as well as helping our students to successfully finishing the semester.
I know each day brings serious news. The situation we are in is unprecedented for all of us. We will get through this together, as we are a resilient bunch! We will continue to share additional detailed information in the coming days. For now, the most important thing is to take care of yourself and your families.
As you know, we can all further protect ourselves and others by:
- Washing your hands often with soap and water; covering your cough and sneeze; avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Practicing self-care by eating a healthy diet and taking time to rest
- Frequently cleaning all commonly touched surfaces
- Avoiding large gatherings
- Staying home if you are sick
If you feel you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, The Minnesota Department of Health recommends:
- Stay at home for at least 7 days, and for 3 days with no fever and improvement of respiratory symptoms – whichever is longer. (Your fever should be gone for 3 days without using fever-reducing medicine).
- Use the CDC website on how to Care For Yourself at Home with COVID-19.
- If your household contacts were exposed to you while you had symptoms, they should try to stay home as much as possible for 14 days.
Thank you, stay safe, and stay strong.