Message from the Office for the President: Updates to masking start May 12

May 11, 2022

Dear students, faculty, and staff,

With the end of the semester upon us, I’m writing to provide an update on the University’s mask mandate.

In consultation with our public health experts, we have evaluated current conditions to determine appropriate masking as we head into the summer months. While they may evolve in the future as circumstances change, the following mask updates will be in effect as of tomorrow (Thursday, May 12, 2022) in University-owned or leased facilities (subject to any additional requirements put in place by non-University property owners):

  • Masks are no longer required in classroom and instructional laboratory settings.
  • Masks will continue to be required:
    • In posted healthcare settings,
    • In settings where Personal Protective Equipment is required due to environmental or hazardous material conditions, and
    • In isolation and quarantine spaces.
  • Per the University’s previous mask requirements, individuals may choose whether to wear masks in other indoor and outdoor spaces and events, including spring commencement and sporting events.

Masking continues to be a helpful action you can take to prevent the spread of COVID-19, along with staying up-to-date on vaccinations, staying home when ill, and taking other precautions such as washing your hands thoroughly. When making decisions about masking, we encourage you to consider local conditions. As a community, it is important that we continue to respect and honor the decision of those who choose to wear a mask, recognizing the concerns of those who are immunocompromised or are taking steps to protect their families or others. Remember that masks labeled KN95 or N95 offer better protection than other alternatives.

This approach will continue until further notice and, just as it has throughout the pandemic, the University will continue to monitor public health circumstances and consult with our public health experts.

Please note that these updates do not change the University’s current flexible work approach, which allows local leaders to implement work solutions based on broad University-level guidelines.

Lastly, we recognize with great appreciation our important partnership with the State of Minnesota, which became the nation’s 32nd state 164 years ago today. The support and cooperation of our state’s leaders in St. Paul as we’ve navigated the pandemic together has been invaluable and we extend our sincere appreciation.

I hope you all have a wonderful summer.

With warmest wishes,
Joan Gabel