Act now! Critical steps to stop the spread of COVID-19

November 11, 2020

 

Dear Iowa State Community,

The latest COVID-19 testing results are concerning. We are writing to share new restrictions and ask that you double down on your efforts to help stop the spread of the virus.

Testing results. From Nov. 2 – Nov. 8, the number of COVID-19 tests conducted on campus was 2,277. Total positive tests include 344 from on-campus testing and 22 self-reports. If you have symptoms or have had contact with a positive case, please schedule an appointment to get tested. There are open testing times at Johnny’s in Hilton Coliseum.

Cooperate with the Public Health Team. It is critically important that you cooperate with the case investigation and contact tracing process. Please do the responsible thing and answer your phone and emails when contacted.

New restrictions. Through contact tracing and case management data, we know transmission is occurring primarily in social situations where students are not wearing face coverings and physically distancing. As part of our targeted mitigation strategies, the Division of Student Affairs, in partnership with the Sorority and Fraternity Community, is implementing new restrictions on social events and non-member visitors, and limiting non-resident traffic in all sorority and fraternity housing as a result of high transmission rates in some chapters. Similar restrictions are being implemented in the residence halls.

Strict guidelines for student events. We know that personal interaction is an important part of well-being and the Iowa State experience. Student organizations can continue to hold in-person meetings and events but they must be held on-campus and strictly follow the Guidance for Gatherings at ISU, including the Cyclones Care behaviors. These events must pre-register through the University Event Authorization System and will be monitored by campus safety ambassadors.

Safe learning spaces. We continue to see no evidence of transmission occurring in classrooms, laboratories, studios, or other learning spaces. Since the beginning of the semester, 2,544 individuals have been identified as having had close contact with an infected person, and of those, the vast majority were in non-instructional settings. Of those 2,544 individuals, 58 were identified as a close contact in a learning space. One of those 58 subsequently tested positive for COVID-19, and evidence from the contact tracing process points to off-campus exposure as having been the most likely transmission path.

Free student testing Nov. 16-21. A reminder to students to schedule your appointment now to get a free COVID-19 test before the semester ends. Schedule your appointment online for a time next week, Nov. 16 – 21. Book now before the spots are filled.

Stop the spread. Please do your part to stop the spread. Wear your face covering. Practice physical distancing. Wash your hands. Stay home if you’re sick. Don’t risk exposing others to illness. Thank you for caring for yourselves and each other. 

 

Wendy Wintersteen, President

Toyia K. Younger, Senior Vice President for Student Affairs