Category: Campus Experience

Tips for Travel in the Time of COVID-19

by Mark Wilcox, University Marketing and Communications

Michigan Tech’s Fall Break starts today (Oct. 15) with classes and activities suspended until Monday (Oct. 19). Some students and staff are taking advantage of the break to return home to reconnect with family and friends, while many will stay close to campus practicing physical distancing and other behaviors to protect themselves from COVID-19.

Traveling during the pandemic is a topic most of us have thought about, from this “mini-vacation,” to the much longer upcoming holiday breaks. Traveling in and of itself is really not the issue, according to epidemiologist Kelly Kamm (KIP) — the behavior we practice while traveling is. “The rules have certainly changed,” said Kamm. “We have to have a mindset that we are at risk by who we come into contact with and, conversely, we could be putting those who come into contact with us at risk.”

Update on Academic Year 2020-2021 Calendar Planning

by Office of the Provost

As we continue to make our way through fall semester 2020, I think we are all happy to find that the planning we engaged in during the spring and summer has paid off. I want to thank all members of the Michigan Tech community for wearing their face coverings, practicing physical distancing, washing their hands, and cleaning the surfaces they touch. Because of our collective efforts to “Be Smart and Do Our Part,” the number of active COVID-19 cases in our campus community remains low.

We returned to Health and Safety Level Three on Monday, October 12, 2020. Because the number of COVID-19 cases on campus continues to be low, we currently anticipate remaining at Level Three until the end of the semester. Planning is underway for a COVID-modified version of our traditional face-to-face Midyear Commencement ceremony on December 19. More details about that event will be released as soon as the Commencement Committee has a chance to finalize their plans. 

COVID-19 Campus Guidelines Remain in Place

by MTU Flex Task Force

This past Friday, Governor Whitmer moved Region 8 (the Upper Peninsula) back to Phase 4 of the MI Safe Start Plan and the Michigan Supreme Court issued a ruling that effectively invalidated the governor’s COVID-19-related executive orders after April 30. Since then, the MTU Flex Task Force has received questions as to how these developments (in addition to the emergency order issued yesterday by the Department of Health and Human Services) might affect the status of COVD-19 protocols on campus. In short, these changes will not alter the Health and Safety Level on campus or impact educational operations.

Michigan Tech to Shift to Health and Safety Level Four

by Rick Koubek, President

Thanks to the collective work of our employees and students, detected cases of COVID-19 in our student population continue to decline. But, as we work to satisfy our mission as an educational institution, we remain mindful of our commitment to the community. 

The Copper Country has seen a recent surge in COVID-19 cases. Given the seriousness of the situation, Michigan Tech will transition to Health and Safety Level Four for a period of two weeks (through October 11) effective Monday, September 28. This transition is a targeted effort to mitigate further spread among our community at large by temporarily reducing the density of people on campus.

#MaskUPHuskies

by Student Behaviors and Expectations Working Group

To help spread the word that wearing a face mask is crucial in stopping the spread of COVID-19 on campus, the Student Behaviors and Expectations Working Group has created the #maskUPhuskies social media campaign.

The #maskUPhuskies effort is a gentle, humorous way to not only encourage students to wear facemasks but also to give them tools to spread the word.

Thank you and Welcome

by Rick Koubek, President

Dear Members of the Michigan Tech Community, Welcome back! 

Throughout the summer, the faculty and staff at Michigan Tech have worked hard to implement many of the known measures that slow the spread of COVID-19. Because of your efforts, we are able to welcome students to campus next week. Some of these include: 

MTU Flex Employee Guidebook Available

by University Marketing and Communications

As the Michigan Tech Community adapts to changing work environments and expectations as a result of COVID-19, we face new challenges each new day. But as we have shown thus far through creativity and perseverance, it is possible to create a healthy and safe environment for our campus community.

As we welcome new students and welcome back those returning to campus, take a moment to review the MTU Flex Employee Guidebook. The guidebook provides important health and safety information along with updated campus operations and protocols.

However, it is important to remember to continue to visit the MTU Flex website often. Here you’ll find the latest information related to COVID-19, the current campus Health and Safety Level, and other campus news. The Flex website is continually updated and should be considered your most reliable source for up-to-date information.

While much about this pandemic is beyond our control, one thing we can count on is each other. Thanks for doing your part to help keep our campus community safe.

COVID-19 Testing, a Crucial Part of the Plan

by University Marketing and Communications

With the start of the 2020-21 academic year and the arrival of thousands of new and returning students, COVID-19 testing is a crucial part of Michigan Tech’s plan for fall.

Sarah Schulte, general counsel and secretary to the Board of Trustees, said the University’s student COVID-19 testing program has two main components — a strong baseline testing effort and ongoing surveillance testing

Schulte said the baseline testing effort will primarily occur from Aug. 19, through Aug. 29. During that time, about half of the student population, approximately 40% of the anticipated total on-campus population, is expected to be tested.

HuskyFAN Donation Request

by Husky Food Access Network

The Husky Food Access Network (HuskyFAN) is asking the Michigan Tech Community to support the pantry through food and/or monetary donations from Aug. 10-14, as we get ready to welcome our campus community back to Houghton.

Donations from our campus community help HuskyFAN to continue providing food to those in need. This summer we were able to provide 126 meal packs to students facing financial hardships. To make food donations, please drop them off between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday outside of the HuskyFAN Food Pantry located on the first floor of Fisher Hall, down from Fisher 135 (previously the Aftermath Cafe).

A box with the sign ‘FOOD DONATIONS’ will be placed in front of the Food Pantry to receive donations. Some suggested items to donate include rice, canned vegetables, vegetarian soups, deodorant, shampoo, shave gel, feminine products and cleaning supplies. (Please check the expiration dates as we cannot accept items past their date.)

To make monetary donations, please use this link. If you have any questions about the food pantry, contact huskyfan@mtu.edu.

Thank you to everyone who has supported the HuskyFAN Food Pantry through food, monetary, or bag donations this summer! We greatly appreciate your support.