Fall 2020 Update

Steadfast and Resilient

Saint Mary’s plans for a return to campus are guided by our mission, an enduring care for our community, and a spirit of flexibility, resiliency, and innovation.

The university welcomed students to the Winona Campus as scheduled in August 2020 for in-person instruction and a modified on-campus fall experience. A hybrid approach, allowing for in-person instruction for certain programs and online learning for others, is underway for the Twin Cities and Rochester campuses.

“We have devised and are implementing a flexible plan of action that prioritizes the health and safety of our faculty, staff, and students, while allowing students to continue receiving the highly interactive and personalized education for which Saint Mary’s is known,” said Ann Merchlewitz, general counsel and university secretary, who is co-chairing the Fall 2020 Planning Coordinating Team. “Although certain aspects of the campus life experience have changed significantly due to COVID-19 safety protocols, we are continuing to provide an excellent living and learning environment, supporting our community through these changes, and continuing to follow safety guidelines set forth by the Minnesota Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We are so very proud of our students who, every day, demonstrate their commitment to their safety and well-being, and the safety and well-being of the entire university community, by following our COVID-19 protocols.”

Under the leadership of the Fall 2020 Planning Coordinating Team, university officials developed a fall plan that is adaptable, taking into account community members who fall into high risk categories, and preparing for the possibility that public health guidance could change as the school year progresses.

“I am thankful for the careful planning that took place to allow us to open on schedule,” said the Rev. James P. Burns, IVD, Ph.D., Saint Mary’s president. We know that continued understanding, care, and consideration will be most helpful as we navigate this challenging new era in higher education.”

Watch this video to see some of the accommodations we've made to classrooms, residence halls, the Student Success Center and First Generation Initiative area, and additional dining spaces within the Toner Student Center on our Winona Campus.