Community Update - March 13, 2020

Coronavirus Community Update – March 13, 2020

From the Office of the President

Dear St. Kate’s Community:

As a follow up to yesterday’s community update, we wanted to share some additional information and details. 

Why Social Distancing?

We have received questions and concerns regarding our decision to enact social distancing, specifically that it is not being universally deployed. For example, some of you have asked if we care more about protecting the health of our students more than faculty and staff since we asked students to leave campus and are still asking faculty and staff to maintain usual duties.

Social distancing is not social isolation; we all still need to do regular life activities including keeping our University open. Rather, it aims to reduce the density of people in a space at a given time and the number of large group interactions people have (e.g. class sessions). De-densifying protects everyone–faculty, staff, students, and the broader community. Slowing the spread of the virus also helps ensure our health care systems are not overwhelmed and have the capacity to provide care to those who need it when they are sick.

We care about everyone’s health. As the Incident Management Team evaluated the situation and events of the week, we felt it was critical that we take precautions to limit the risk of exposure to all members of our community. The best actions we can take to care for everyone is to help slow the spread of the virus and minimize its effects on vulnerable populations. This is done by limiting social interactions through social distancing as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This is the only tool we have under our control at this time, and we are using it.

Academics & Classes

  • Midterms – Faculty will communicate with their students on how midterms for courses will be managed. 
  • Online and hybrid courses – Faculty will communicate with students on how these courses will be managed next week.  

Student Workers

As a reminder, students should not report to scheduled hourly positions during the extended spring break. We know this raises many questions and concerns for students, and we are working diligently to identify answers and solutions. We will share updates, including answering individual questions students have submitted, as soon as we are able. If this change to your work schedule causes a financial hardship, please contact

Campus Hours During Break (March 16-29)

  • Minneapolis Campus 
    • Labs will be open this weekend (March 14-15). 
    • The campus will be open 6 a.m. – 6 p.m. March 16-20 and March 23-27. 
    • The campus will be closed March 21-22 and March 28-29 (weekends).
  • St. Paul Academic Buildings: The University will be conducting a deep clean of academic buildings on the St. Paul campus during the break. As such, all academic buildings will be locked except Derham and Coeur de Catherine. Faculty and staff may access these buildings using their keycards throughout the break. 
  • Coeur de Catherine will be open with reduced hours for services as follows: 
    • CdC building hours: 7 a.m.- 6 p.m.
    • Bookstore: Monday – Friday, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m.
    • Post office: Monday – Friday, 8 a.m.- 5 p.m.
    • Dining Room: Daily, 11 a.m.- 5 p.m.
    • Dining Grab and Go: 10 a.m.- 5 p.m.
    • Pulse and C-store closed. 
    • Library: 8 a.m.- 6 p.m.
  • The Tech Hub physical office will be closed during the break. Support will be provided remotely and by phone. 
  • The Butler Center will be closed.
  • The Health and Wellness Clinic will have reduced hours March 16-20, 9 a.m.- 2 p.m. They will be monitoring voicemail and email throughout the extended break. Please call the clinic before coming in - (651) 690-6714.  

Residence Halls

All students are strongly advised to leave campus during this break if they are able and as soon as they can; however, campus student housing will be open during the break. Students currently living on campus who cannot make arrangements to stay away from campus during spring break must work with Student Affairs and Residence Life in order to be permitted to stay on campus during the break. 
No guests are permitted in residence halls during the break. 
Residence Life is suspending all programs during spring break. 


Mass is canceled through March 29. 

Please send questions to

Thank you for all of your feedback, your flexibility, and your good suggestions. 

Becky Roloff