UNW Response to Covid-19 | University of Northwestern, St. Paul
UNW Response to Covid-19
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UNW Response to Covid-19


Thursday, May 20, 2021

Dear Students,

Have you had any of these experiences?

  • All alone in a car or at home and still wearing your face covering because it has become such a routine?
  • Have had fun trying to match your face covering with your outfit?
  • Dread it anytime you must wear a face covering?

We probably all have “mask moments” we can recall and will hopefully laugh about them as time passes.

Whichever boat you land in, you are most likely aware that on May 13, Governor Tim Walz ended Minnesota’s statewide face covering requirement effective May 14 with Executive Order 21-23. After careful review of the executive order, and consideration of our community, the use of face coverings will no longer be required on campus effective Monday, May 24 at 6 a.m.

We continue to be committed to mitigating risk and strongly encourage the use of face coverings in alignment with MDH and CDC guidance as outlined below:

  • MDH and CDC strongly recommends that anyone who is not fully vaccinated* continue to wear face coverings indoors in businesses, public settings, and when around people from other households, as well as outdoors when social distancing cannot be maintained.
  • MDH and CDC do not require those who are fully vaccinated* to wear face coverings indoors or outdoors. However, MDH and CDC recommend face coverings for fully vaccinated people in a few situations such as public mass transportation. Health care settings and K-12 schools may be required by federal, state, and/or local regulatory authorities to require face coverings in certain situations.

    *Someone is considered fully vaccinated after two weeks following the second Pfizer or Moderna dose or two weeks after the single Johnson and Johnson dose.

As this continues to be a rapidly changing situation, Northwestern reserves the right to make additional changes to protocols in alignment with MDH and CDC requirements.

In addition, students should be aware of the following guidelines, shaped in a spirit of care and respect for those we encounter on campus:

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Email Health Services at HealthServices@unwsp.edu or call the COVID Response Hotline at 651-631-5353 for further directions.

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  • Anyone may still choose to wear a face covering and should feel free to do so without concern. All members of our community should support anyone who chooses to wear a face covering since here are a variety of reasons one might do so.
  • 6-foot social distancing guidelines remain in place for classrooms and all other campus areas until further notice. In academic lab settings where 6-foot distancing is not possible, face coverings are strongly recommended. Additional protective equipment in labs may be required by instructors for specific activities.
  • Due to the availability of accommodations and adjustments, individual departments, faculty, staff, or students should not request others to wear face coverings. Instead, accommodation or adjustment options may be explored as noted below.
  • Accommodations and Adjustments: We are aware that this adjustment to CDC, MDH, and Northwestern mitigation protocols has been sudden and that some may be concerned with these changes.
  • Student accommodation and adjustment requests may still be submitted to Academic Achievement for consideration. Students who are approved to participate virtually can work with IT regarding any technology questions or needs.

As we relax our mitigation protocols, we are reminded that the virus is still present in our community and around the world. We appreciate your attention to move forward thoughtfully, exercising personal responsibility as we continue to navigate this season. Please continue to pray for protection for our community and beyond along with healing for those that have been affected by the virus in various ways.

Many blessings as you enjoy summer,

Anna Mukaria, PA-C, MPH
Director of COVID Operations
Physician Assistant

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Designated to provide students with emergency financial aid grants to help cover expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19.

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