This week we welcomed the first of our students back to campus … students who moved into the Alverna Center for their 14-day quarantine. We are checking in with the students multiple times a day, and they have access to hot meals through food service. We are excited to have students back and are preparing for resident assistants and peer ministers to arrive soon.
As of Aug. 1, the name of Student Affairs and Student Life has officially changed to Student Affairs. My own title, office names, and areas where the office is noted have all been updated.
On Friday, Aug. 7, the Winona Campus will welcome Cynthia Kenyon from the Minnesota Department of Health. Kenyon will be visiting various spaces on campus, including, but not limited to, residence halls, dining services, and classroom spaces to assist the university with its continuing work related to the return of all students to campus.
Student Senate will continue to meet virtually starting in September. Your student senate president, Kendall Archer, her executive board, and senators are here to assist you and work with the administration of the university to get through these challenging times.
I would like each of you to reflect on the concept of creating familial units or COVID pods. This practice is intended as a way to manage the inevitable. Certain groups of students are naturally going to spend a lot of time together, and we encourage this interaction, as it is healthy and appropriate. When students are on campus, they develop their own campus family. The goal of these familial units is to honor what students do naturally and let them know that they can and should eat together, spend time together, and do things together, viewing it similarly to how they are spending time at home with their own families now.
This is something to think about and will be encouraged as it might be a way to enjoy the college experience while socially distancing and following COVID-19 guidelines.
Keep this information handy in case you have questions related to COVID-19 planning:
Visit these sections on smumn.edu/covidplanning for more updates:
- Commuter students
- Fitzgerald Library and McEnery Center (under Academics)
- Gostomski Fieldhouse
- Motor pool and club/organization guidance (under Residence Life and Student Activities)
- Performance arts (under Academics)
- R.I.S.E. and competitive sports (under Residence Life and Student Activities)
- Residence hall lounges (under Residence Life and Student Activities)
- Safe ride bus (under Residence Life and Student Activities)
- Saint Thomas More Chapel (under Campus Ministry)
- Student Success and First Generation Initiative (under Academics)
- Wellness Center
Stay safe and remember, together, we are Saint Mary’s.
Tim Gossen, Ed.D.
Vice President for Student Affairs