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: 


Update on Employee COVID-19 Testing Program

by University Marketing and Communications

With the big testing tent set up, COVID-19 testing of new and returning students has received a lot of attention. Sarah Schulte, general counsel and secretary to the Board of Trustees and chair of the MTU Flex Task Force, said procedures for employee testing are being finalized. 

“Michigan Tech will pay for employees (20+ hours/week) to have up to two asymptomatic tests during the fall 2020 semester,” Schulte said. 


Join Michigan Tech’s Contact Tracing Team

by MTU Flex Team

Michigan Tech needs your help—we’re looking for volunteers to join our team of paid contact tracers for the fall semester. 

Contact tracers will talk over the phone with Husky community members who have been close contacts of someone who tested positive for COVID-19.

Volunteers will receive free training and will be compensated for their time. As part of the team, you’ll help track connections, notify those who are being asked to quarantine, and offer standard advice on how to quarantine and what COVID-19 symptoms can look like.

Contact tracing is a critical element in keeping our Husky community safe. 

To volunteer as a contact tracer, please email contact-tracing@mtu.edu.


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.


Play Parade of Nations Hide and Seek

by Jennifer Donovan, Parade of Nations Committee

Does your organization want to take the community on a Parade of Nations scavenger hunt? Help celebrate our multicultural heritage by signing up to be a “Hide Team” for the 2020 Parade of Nations.

Hide Teams will create clues to a particular country or cultural heritage and hiding places for those clues. The Parade of Nations committee will hide the clues and send the first clue to Find Teams that have signed up to play the game.


SDC Welcomes Faculty and Staff Members on Monday

by Recreation

Michigan Tech’s Student Development Complex (SDC) will reopen to faculty/staff members as well as current students on Monday (Aug. 17). A team of staff from Recreation has continually updated its reopening plan since the July 13 soft opening to students. The facility is implementing an enhanced cleaning schedule based on guidelines from the CDC and recreation facility standards.


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.


GLIAC Suspends Competition Until January 1

by Calvin Larson, Director of Athletics Communication

Following a thorough evaluation of all COVID-19 risks and safety protocols, and numerous meetings involving various GLIAC governance groups, the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Council of Presidents and Chancellors voted unanimously Tuesday (Aug. 11), to suspend all sports competition until Jan. 1, 2021.


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.


New Fall Academic Course: COVID-19 Impact & Response (UN 3990)

by Steven Elmer and Kelly Kamm, Health Research Institute

A new Fall course — UN 3990 “COVID-19 Impact & Response” is being offered through the Health Research Institute on campus.

Given the effects of the global pandemic, we encourage all undergraduate and graduate students to consider the course:

  • Course: UN 3990-2 COVID-19 Impact & Response
  • Credits: One credit
  • CRN: 85111
  • Semester: Fall 2020
  • Time: Taught remotely and online
  • Format: Seminar-based
  • Pre-reqs: Open to all students
  • Description: This course will provide a variety of perspectives on what is currently known about COVID-19 and its impact on health and society

Each week through a Town Hall style format faculty, public health officials, clinicians and other experts in our community will discuss topics including: the role of public health to protect community health, etiology of disease, virus spread globally and locally, mechanisms to interrupt and halt transmission, health disparities, impact of disease on physical and mental health, strategies for adapting to lifestyle change, and economic considerations.

This course will also highlight the current response efforts in the Western Upper Peninsula, including Michigan Tech’s involvement through the COVID-19 testing laboratory.

The course goal is to increase awareness about COVID-19 and encourage everyone to do their part to help during the pandemic. For information contact Kelly Kamm or Steve Elmer.