Baseline Testing Complete, Surveillance Testing Begins

by MTU Flex Task Force

On Saturday, August 29, Michigan Tech concluded its student baseline testing program. Over the last two weeks, 1,784 COVID-19 tests were conducted. The virus was detected in seven individual tests, for a detection rate of 0.39%. The University’s student surveillance testing program begins today, August 31.

One of the primary purposes of our baseline testing program was to catch asymptomatic cases of COVID-19 and contain outbreaks of the virus through contact tracing. Over the weekend, the Western Upper Peninsula Health Department (WUPHD) identified Theta Tau, an off-campus location, as a potential exposure site for COVID-19. Contact tracers are working diligently to identify and get in touch with those known to have come in close contact with the infected person. (Theta Tau is not a University-recognized Greek organization due to prior misconduct.)

Persons who are determined to come into close contact with an infected person are required to quarantine for 14 days. When a student is required to quarantine, their professors are notified that the student is not to be on campus for a specified period of time, and the student is told to email instructors about making up missed assignments or rescheduling exams, should that be necessary. 

Students in quarantine are given guidelines and recommendations for keeping themselves and others safe and healthy. Breaking quarantine or isolation can result in conduct charges ranging from probation to suspension. Because quarantine and isolation can feel unsettling, a representative from the Dean of Students Office contacts each student to discuss any concerns or questions. The quarantined students can also reach out via this form. Support is also offered through the Center for Student Mental Health and Wellness (formerly Counseling Services).