We are at the halfway point of the spring semester. With the nice weather this past week, it has been wonderful walking around campus, seeing signs of spring, visiting with students, talking about summer plans and thinking about what life will be like when this pandemic is behind us.
But we have a problem. Among some members of our student community, we are seeing some very, very troubling signs when it comes to COVID-19.
- We are not experiencing the same decrease in COVID-19 cases that is occurring in the St. Louis region. In fact our case numbers have gone up since January and the number of students who are positive with COVID-19 and in isolation, and those who are quarantined remains high.
- We are seeing many cases of COVID-19 that are happening because students have completely ignored the public health principles that we put in place for everyone’s safety. Too many students having parties or otherwise gathering, even in small groups, and not wearing masks.
- Several students have not been compliant or truthful with our contact tracers when called, making it very difficult for us to contain the spread of COVID in our community.
- Students who have been quarantined are putting pressure on our staff to be released early and in some isolated cases have violated our quarantine expectations. Please see our Quarantine and Isolation FAQ page for additional information
Students who violate the expectations in the Community Pledge and Policy Acknowledgement will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards.
The situation we face now at the midpoint of the spring semester is dire. We have started to re-open campus, allow groups to schedule in-person meetings, host spring varsity athletic activity, and make plans for an in-person Commencement. But everything we have done and worked for is at risk if we can’t change our collective behaviors right now and turn the corner.
Please continue to physically distance, wear a mask, report symptoms and comply with our team of professionals doing contact tracing and providing medical support. These measures are in place for everyone’s safety. I know we can do this.
Interim Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs