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Saint Mary’s is committed to the safety of its students, faculty, and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The university strongly recommends that its students, faculty, and staff be vaccinated against COVID-19. We also require that all community members and campus visitors wear masks in classrooms and labs as required, in offices as required, and at large gatherings and events as may be required by the university. Masks are not required elsewhere on campus, but we respect the decisions of our community members who chose to continue to wear them.

Together we are Saint Mary’s. Together we are stronger.

We ask our community members to please keep practicing these important COVID-19 mitigation measures:

  • Wear a face mask as required.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Get tested three to five days after being exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 or immediately if you are experiencing symptoms.
  • Get your COVID-19 vaccination if you have not already done so.
  • Get your COVID-19 booster now. The CDC recommends everyone 18 years and older should get a booster shot. Please visit the CDC’s website for more information on specific criteria and where to find a booster.  At this time, the university does not require faculty, staff, and students to get a COVID-19 vaccine booster; however, everyone is highly encouraged to do so.
  • Get your flu shot.

Pledge Be Kind, Protect our Community

 

As members of the Saint Mary’s community, inspired by our Lasallian Catholic heritage and virtues, we are expected to:

  • Protect myself and others in a spirit of generosity. We will keep ourselves and those around us safe from COVID-19 by abiding by university COVID-19 protocols.
  • Practice kindness and good judgment. We will be respectful of others, especially those at the highest risk.

COVID-19 Vaccination

In light of the infectiousness of COVID-19, the seriousness of the illness for some, and the consequences of a COVID-19 outbreak on the university’s ability to engage fully in-person, Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota strongly  recommends the COVID-19 vaccine/bivalent booster for its students, faculty, and staff. Based on public health guidance, the health and safety of the university community is best ensured if the vast majority of the university community is vaccinated and boosted against COVID-19.

Reporting a COVID-19 Case

To mitigate against the spread of COVID-19 on our campuses, Saint Mary’s has adopted the following reporting protocols. If you live, work, learn, or are otherwise on campus, you must report if you test positive for COVID-19, if you have symptoms of COVID-19, or if you are a close contact of someone who tested positive for COVID-19. All students should report this information (with appropriate dates) to covid@smumn.edu; and faculty and staff should report this information (with appropriate dates) to hr@smumn.edu.

Isolation and Quarantine

Use the Isolation and Exposure Calculator to determine if you need to isolate or take other steps to prevent spreading COVID-19

COVID-19 Calculator

  • If a student or employee tests positive for COVID-19, the student or employee should isolate at home or as directed by Student Affairs (in the case of a student at the College) for at least five (5) days after symptoms started or five (5) days from the date of a positive COVID-19 test.

    If the student or employee has symptoms, the student or employee should stay in isolation until all three of the following are true:

    • It has been five (5) days since the student or employee first felt sick. Day zero is the day symptoms started. Day one (1) is the first full day after symptoms began.
    • The student or employee has had no fever (Temperature is 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or lower) for at least 24 hours, without using medicine that lowers fevers.
    • The student or employee feels better. Any cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms the student or employee had experienced have improved since symptoms started on day zero.

    If the student or employee does not have symptoms, the student or employee should stay in isolation and away from others for five (5) days after the positive test date. Day zero is the day the student got tested.

    • If the student or employee develops symptoms during this time, the student or employee must start isolation over. Day zero is the day symptoms start. Day one (1) is the first full day after symptoms began. Refer to the above section above on what to do if you have symptoms.

    After the isolation period ends, the student should continue to do the following for another five (5) days:

    • Wear a well-fitting mask, preferably an N95 or KN95 mask, or double up on a cloth mask when indoors around others and in public.
    • Avoid others at risk for getting extremely sick from the COVID-19 virus, including older adults, those living in long-term care facilities, and people with health conditions like asthma, diabetes, heart disease, obesity, or weakened immune systems.
    • Avoid places where a mask needs to be removed to participate in an activity (e.g., gyms, restaurants) and avoid eating near others at home and work. Use grab-and-go options in the dining hall.
    • Avoid travel. If travel is required, wear a well-fitting mask.

  • The university will quarantine students who live on the Winona Campus and are a close contact of an individual who tested positive for COVID-19. The university requires other students attending in-person, on-ground courses and all employees to quarantine if they are a close contact of an individual who tested positive for COVID-19. Close contact includes:

    • Living in the same residence hall room as an individual with confirmed or suspected COVID-19;
    • Caring for a sick person with COVID-19;
    • Being within six (6) feet of an individual with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 for at least 15 minutes during a 24-hour time period starting from two (2) days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic individuals, two (2) days prior to a positive specimen collection) until the time the individual is isolated; or
    • Being in direct contact with secretions from a sick person with COVID-19 (e.g., being coughed on, kissing, sharing utensils, etc.).

    After exposure to the virus, these students or employees must:

    • Wear a well-fitting mask for ten (10) days when around others, even at home, preferably an N95 or KN95 mask, or double up on a cloth mask. The ten (10) days start from the day after the student’s or employee’s last close contact with someone with COVID-19. The actual day of close contact is counted as day zero.
    • Get tested at least five (5) days after close contact. Remember, day zero is the day of your last exposure to someone with COVID-19. If the student or employee tests positive, the student or employee must now follow isolation recommendations. The student or employee must start counting for the isolation period, with day zero being the date of the positive COVID-19 test.
    • Watch for symptoms for 10 days after close contact. If symptoms develop, stay home and away from others (isolate) and test immediately for COVID-19. Start counting again from day zero (day one (1) is the first full day after symptoms start) and follow the CDC’s isolation recommendations.
    • Avoid travel. If travel is required, wear a well-fitting mask, preferably an N95 or KN95, or double up on a cloth mask.
    • Avoid places where the student or employee may need to remove a mask (e.g., gyms, restaurants). Use grab-and-go options in the dining hall.
    • Continue to wear a well-fitting mask around others, preferably an N95 or KN95, or double up on a cloth mask.

Other Information

  • Effective March 11, 2022, masks are no longer required on any campus with the following exceptions:

    • During classes: Faculty may require students to wear masks during class and lab time. Faculty will be asked to notify their classes about their requirements. Students must respect and comply with masking requirements from faculty.
    • In individual offices or departments: Masks may be required in individual offices, at the discretion of individual employees.
    • At other large events/gatherings: Masks may be required at events in university theaters or other large events or gatherings, as determined by the university.
    • In the Wellness Center on the Winona Campus.

    Visitors are expected to follow the same masking requirements as students and employees.

    All members of the Saint Mary’s community are expected to keep a mask with them at all times and follow masking requirements when notified or when indicated signage.

    The university supports everyone who chooses to wear a mask even when it is not required. Everyone is expected to respect individual choices about masking, remembering, for example, that people may choose to mask because they are simply uncomfortable without a mask, they are immunocompromised, or they have small children at home who cannot be vaccinated.

  • Effective March 14, 2022, the university will cease all contact tracing investigations for students and employees who test positive for COVID-19. After that date, students and employees must notify their close contacts. Failure to do so will constitute a violation of university COVID-19 protocols.

    Close contacts are people you have been within six (6) feet of for 15 minutes or more during the 48 hours prior to the onset of your symptoms or prior to your positive COVID-19 test. Your close contacts should watch for symptoms, get tested, and follow the recommended quarantine guidance. You should provide your close contacts with these instructions so that they can take steps to protect themselves, their families, and the Saint Mary’s community. Students and employees who are close contacts are expected to follow the guidelines from the Minnesota Department of Health. Failure to do so will constitute a violation of university COVID-19 protocols.

    If a student on the Winona Campus is a close contact and needs quarantine housing or academic accommodations, the student should contact covid@smumn.edu immediately after notification that they are a close contact.

Community Guests and Friends

 

Visitors to any Saint Mary’s campus must follow the COVID-19 protocols for the university. Saint Mary’s has reopened its walking trails and The Woods Disc Golf Course on the Winona Campus to the general public. In addition, the grounds of the Winona Campus are open to the general public for walking and running. The public and all guests are asked to maintain social distance with other users.

Saint Mary’s appreciates your patience and understanding at this time.

Resources:

Saint Mary's University's efforts to respond to COVID-19 are informed by guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), and several other organizations.