Campus Update — 2021 Campus COVID-19 Protocols

This message was shared with Augustana students on Friday, Dec. 11, 2020.

Dear Augustana students,

Congratulations on your successful finish of the fall semester! I hope you are now enjoying some well-deserved rest and holiday fun. 

I’m writing today to invite your attention to important reminders, protocol updates, and helpful information.

Report Positive COVID-19 Tests

Please remember that if you test positive for COVID-19 during the holiday break, no matter where you are located, you are to notify the university. We continue tracking all positive cases that have impacted our Augustana community. Individuals who are within 90 days of receiving a positive test can avoid quarantine. You can provide notification either by phone at 605.274.4124 (option 2), or by email at goodhealth@augie.edu.

Contribute to a Safe Return to Campus

Please be safe and maintain the same commitment to health and safety protocols at home as you do while on campus. Your decisions will have a significant impact on our safe return to in-person learning and living. If positive cases are brought back to campus, we could experience a quick spread. Please note the following for the 7-10 days leading up to your return to campus:

  • A highlight of the holiday season is treasured time with family and friends. New Year’s Eve celebrations in particular tend to inspire large gatherings.The timing of New Year’s Eve and your return to campus make it especially important that you consider the implications of your participation in high-risk activities. Please continue to avoid close, confined and crowded spaces, especially if others aren’t wearing masks. 
  • Please consider getting tested prior to returning to campus, even if you are not experiencing symptoms. Receiving a negative test result within two days or closer to your return will significantly narrow the risk of unknowingly contributing to community spread as someone who is asymptomatic but COVID-19 positive. A list of COVID-19 testing options is now available.
  • Continue to closely monitor for symptoms. Get tested if you are experiencing symptoms and do not return to campus until you have received a negative test result and are asymptomatic. If you receive a positive test result, do not return to campus until you have completed the required ten days of isolation and are recovered.
  • If you are a close contact to someone who has tested positive or who has a pending test, please do not return to campus until your quarantine period is complete.
  • If your J-Term class is online, consider delaying your return to campus by one week. A more gradual return of students will further contribute to a safe and healthy start to 2021.

Review the Viking Flex Plan

Please review the Viking Flex Plan for campus COVID-19 resources, documentation, and guidelines. You will find all of the health and safety protocols to follow during J-Term and the spring semester. Within COVID-19 Basics you will find updated definitions, as well as the recently released CDC shortened quarantine guidance.  

Rooms Available for J-Term Online Classes

To further support your success and enhance your experience in January, students taking classes that are synchronous online will now find a room assignment added to their interim 2021 schedule. Rooms have been reserved during class times to provide an option for students who would like a shared space in which to interact with the online instructor, as well as the remote students enrolled in their course. Use of these reserved spaces is optional, and will not at any point be required. Spaces will be set according to our Viking Flex protocols and masks will be required. More information will be sent prior to the start of the January term.

We will continue to share new information and updates as appropriate in the weeks ahead.

Congratulations again on wrapping up Fall Semester 2020! It is truly one for the history books.

Wishing you a happy and safe holiday season,

Dr. Colin Irvine

Provost and Executive Vice President