Communications to Students

Summer changes to COVID-19 response at USU

Dear Students,

Summer semester has already begun at USU, and this summer will also be a season of transition. While many of you are away until fall, I want to outline some coming changes in COVID-19 protocols and expectations in case you do visit one of our campuses or locations.

These changes will shift responsibility for protecting ourselves from infection with COVID-19 from the university to a more personal responsibility. The best tools we have for doing that are:

  1. Get vaccinated. Visit usu.edu for information on scheduling a vaccination.
  2. Stay home when you are sick or have been exposed to COVID-19.If you suspect you have COVID-19, get tested and fill out the COVID-19 Questionnaire. This will notify your professors, who can work with you on appropriate accommodations.
  3. Practice social distancing and good hygiene habits.
  4. Wear a mask when you are in a large crowd and/or close to others who may not be vaccinated.

As of June 1, masks will no longer be required, but rather will be recommended within all USU buildings and shared vehicles – particularly in areas where you can’t maintain a distance of 6 feet from others. USU will retain the ability to require masks for certain situations, such as large gatherings and specific events or work environments.

USU is planning for a large increase of in-person classes for the fall, with more than double the classroom capacity from spring 2021 to fall 2021. USU will continue to offer courses in a variety of methods to provide flexibility and access, with a goal of also returning to USU’s standard number of in-person course offerings in spring 2022. You can help ensure we reach this goal by getting vaccinated.

It is exciting to begin transitioning to a post-pandemic world and returning to the events, traditions, and interactions that help make the USU experience so special. By being mindful of our actions and taking responsibility for our wellness, we can continue moving in this very positive direction.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


COVID-19 vaccine clinic on Logan campus April 16

Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff:

In partnership with the Bear River Health Department (BRHD), USU is offering a COVID-19 vaccination clinic on the Logan campus:

Friday, April 16
9 – 11:30 a.m.
Eccles Conference Center

This clinic will provide the Pfizer vaccine, which requires a second dose after 21 days. Please only register for this clinic if you will be in the Logan area for your second dose. There are 500 vaccines available Friday; USU and BRHD hope to offer additional clinics depending on supply.

You must make an appointment in advance, and signups are first-come, first-served for USU students and employees only. Sign up for the April 16 clinic here: https://brhd.jotform.com/210975329994976.

To ensure all available vaccine doses are used, USU offers a standby list. Get more details and sign up here: https://www.usu.edu/dps/emergency/vaccine-stand-by.

Because parking is limited in the center of the Logan campus, we encourage clinic participants to park elsewhere and walk to the Eccles Conference Center.

Vaccines are also available from health departments, pharmacies, and health care providers. To find other locations where you can be vaccinated, visit https://coronavirus.utah.gov/vaccine-distribution or use https://vaccinefinder.org/.

Thank you,

Ellis Bruch
Director of Emergency Management


COVID-19 vaccine clinic on Logan campus April 9

Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff:

In partnership with the Bear River Health Department (BRHD), USU is offering a COVID-19 vaccination clinic on the Logan campus:

Friday, April 9
9 a.m. – noon
Eccles Conference Center

This clinic will provide the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which is a single dose. There are 1,000 doses available; USU and BRHD hope to offer additional clinics depending on vaccine supply.

You must make an appointment in advance, and signups are first-come, first-served for USU students and employees only. Sign up for the April 9 clinic here: https://brhd.jotform.com/210897574194973

Because parking is limited in the center of the Logan campus, we encourage clinic participants to park elsewhere and walk to the Eccles Conference Center.

Vaccines are also available from health departments, pharmacies, and health care providers. To find other locations where you can be vaccinated, visit https://coronavirus.utah.gov/vaccine-distribution or use https://vaccinefinder.org/.

For more information about COVID-19 vaccines, visit https://vaccine.usu.edu/ or watch the video “Talking Vaccines: USU Extension Faculty Answer Some of Your COVID-19 Vaccine Questions” at https://www.usu.edu/today/story/talking-vaccines-usu-extension-faculty-answer-some-of-your-covid-19-vaccine-questions.

Thank you,

Ellis Bruch
Director of Emergency Management


Randomly Selected Testing for COVID-19 begins Tuesday, Feb. 9

Dear Students,

As part of USU’s ongoing efforts to keep our community healthy, we will conduct COVID-19 testing for randomly selected students every Tuesday during the spring semester. USU is required to conduct these screenings by the Utah System of Higher Education’s COVID-19 Intensive Testing Plan. You may be selected for this random testingbecause you live on campus and/or have at least one class with an “in-person” attribute.

“Tuesday Testing” will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Eccles Conference Center beginning Feb. 9. If you’re selected, you will receive an email from covid-19@usu.eduthe Wednesday before your test date, directing you to make an appointment through aggiehealth.usu.edu.

For this test, you will use a short swab to collect a sample in the bottom inch of your nose. It is minimally invasive and not painful. Results are typically sent to you by the end of the day.

If you’ve tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 90 days and/or received both doses of the vaccine, you will be excluded from random testing. Please upload your proof of positive test or vaccination at covid19.usu.edu/upload to ensure that you are excluded.

You can find complete details on “Tuesday Testing” at usu.edu/covid-19/testing/student-testing.

Thank you for doing your part to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


What to expect at USU this spring and beyond

Dear Students,

As we enter the final six weeks of the semester, I hope you are able to take advantage of the warming weather to study outside, be more active, and connect with friends. I also want to share some updates and information on what you can expect at USU campuses for the rest of this spring and into the fall.

COVID-19 Vaccines

You have probably heard that anyone over the age of 16 is now eligible to schedule an appointment for the COVID-19 vaccine. I strongly urge you to be vaccinated if you are able. Vaccines are a key part of ending the pandemic and getting back to the in-person activities and events that are highlights of Utah State University. To find out where you can be vaccinated, visit coronavirus.utah.gov/vaccine-distribution or use vaccinefinder.org. 

Mask Requirement Updates

The statewide mask mandate is likely to end on April 10; however, all USU campuses and centers will continue to require that masks be worn in buildings, as well as in vehicles with more than one occupant (such as shuttles). We have reduced virus spread across the university system thanks in part to everyone’s commitment to masking up, and we will finish spring semester strong and healthy by staying the course. 

Looking Forward: Fall 2021

Next fall will look and feel a lot more like the back-to-school experience we knew before the pandemic. USU plans to offer most classes in person, with a regular academic schedule. 

We have delayed fall registration this year to give more time to arrange classroom space and assign classes for maximum in-person opportunities. Here is the updated fall registration calendar. There will still be multiple course delivery options to provide flexibility, so you can create a schedule that meets your needs. We also plan to have employees on campus providing student support both in person and remotely. In the meantime, remember that USU’s summer semester can be a good time to catch up or get ahead on courses in your degree plan. 

We are all very encouraged by the brighter and longer days, decreasing COVID-19 case counts, and the increasing number of people getting vaccinated. Thank you for everything you have done and continue to do to keep yourselves and your USU family healthy. I am optimistic that we are moving in a positive, more normal direction.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


Randomly Selected Testing for COVID-19 begins Tuesday, Feb. 9

Dear Students,

As part of USU’s ongoing efforts to keep our community healthy, we will conduct COVID-19 testing for randomly selected students every Tuesday during the spring semester. USU is required to conduct these screenings by the Utah System of Higher Education’s COVID-19 Intensive Testing Plan. You may be selected for this random testingbecause you live on campus and/or have at least one class with an “in-person” attribute.

“Tuesday Testing” will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Eccles Conference Center beginning Feb. 9. If you’re selected, you will receive an email from covid-19@usu.eduthe Wednesday before your test date, directing you to make an appointment through aggiehealth.usu.edu.

For this test, you will use a short swab to collect a sample in the bottom inch of your nose. It is minimally invasive and not painful. Results are typically sent to you by the end of the day.

If you’ve tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 90 days and/or received both doses of the vaccine, you will be excluded from random testing. Please upload your proof of positive test or vaccination at covid19.usu.edu/upload to ensure that you are excluded.

You can find complete details on “Tuesday Testing” at usu.edu/covid-19/testing/student-testing.

Thank you for doing your part to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


Testing for Students in Spring Semester

Sent Jan. 7, 2021

Dear Student,

Welcome to the Logan Utah State University campus for spring semester! We are so glad you are back.

COVID-19 Entry Testing

If you live on campus or have at least one class with an in-person component, you should register for a free COVID-19 rapid test within the first few weeks of spring semester. This testing will help us get off to a great start. You do not need to be tested if you have tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 90 days or have received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccination.

Testing will be done in the Eccles Conference Center on the Logan campus on the following dates and times:

Jan. 19: noon to 4 p.m.
Jan. 20 and 21: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Jan. 25, 26, 27: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Register for a COVID-19 test now so you can ensure a date and time that works best for you.

This “entry testing” effort is being done using a rapid antigen test. At the testing site, you will be asked to collect a sample from the bottom inch of your nose using a short swab. Sample collection is minimally invasive and not painful. You will receive test results typically by the end of the day.

If You Are Ill or Were Exposed to COVID-19

If you have flu-like symptoms of an illness or have had exposure to COVID-19, you should get a free test at the East Stadium Testing Site (if you are in Logan) or at a community-based testing site (outside Logan).

Answer Calls from Case Investigators

When individuals in our campus community test positive, our case investigators reach out to provide resources for self-isolation and identify contacts who should quarantine and/or get tested. Please return texts, calls and emails from the case containment team so they can help keep our campus healthy.

More Information about Monitoring for COVID-19

Entry testing is provided in accordance with the Utah System of Higher Education’s COVID-19 Intensive Testing Plan. This updated plan replaces the previous requirement to test students every 14 days. The plan ensures flexibility for Utah State University by recognizing our waste-water surveillance done on and around the campus, as well symptomatic testing at the East Stadium testing site. We will also be using a random sampling testing model throughout the semester to mitigate virus spread among students. You can learn more about USU’s student testing plans on our website.

Finally, I am deeply troubled by the events that unfolded in our nation’s capital yesterday and join others throughout the world in denouncing violence. These events demonstrate a need for all of us to maintain civility in the face of ideological divisions. I urge the Aggie community to increase their engagement in peaceful democratic processes at all levels and look for ways to rise above the unrest in our society. These events are understandably stressful to all of us. Please access USU’s Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) resources if needed.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


Free COVID-19 Testing Open to ALL Students This Week and Next

Sent on Nov. 11, 2020

Dear Student,

As you know, we are facing a serious situation right now. COVID-19 numbers are climbing sharply, and the Utah Department of Health and Governor Herbert have expressed serious concerns about the increase in hospitalizations and the fact that health care facilities and staff are becoming overwhelmed. We are looking at a situation where our neighbors – and your families – might not be able to get appropriate hospital care for a variety of medical challenges if we don’t curb the current rapid surge in cases.

For this reason, we are asking all USU students in Logan to sign up to be tested for COVID-19 in the TSC this week or next.

Students in the following situations should not get tested:

  • You have already had a COVID-19 test in the last week.
  • You have received a positive COVID-19 test within the last 90 days.
  • You have COVID-related symptoms. Those with COVID-related symptoms must be tested at the USU COVID-19 Testing Site on the East side of Maverik Stadium. You can schedule this test at usu.edu. In addition, please complete the COVID-19 Questionnaire.
  • You are currently in quarantine due to exposure to COVID-19. (Please wait until your quarantine is over to get a weekly test).

Testing will be available on the following days:
Thursday, Nov. 12 and Friday, Nov. 13, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Monday, Nov. 16 through Wednesday, Nov. 18, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

To schedule your test, visit aggiehealth.usu.edu. Once you schedule your test, you will receive a QR code that you will bring to the student testing location in the Taggart Student Center Ballroom. You will need to enter through the west doors (near the Quickstop) and go directly up the stairs. You will self-administer your testing sample using a short swab, and you will receive a text letting you know to check your test results at aggiehealth.usu.edu within 24-48 hours.

If you test positive for COVID-19, your results will be forwarded to USU’s case containment team and you will receive information about how to self-isolate for 10 days. Positive cases are also shared with the Utah Department of Health, who shares the information with the Bear River Health Department.

If you have any questions about weekly testing, you can reach out to the COVID Care Team: text (435) 562-6084 or email covid.care@usu.edu.

With the Thanksgiving holiday just around the corner, we know you want to protect yourself, your friends, family members, USU staff and faculty. We are proud of the fact that Aggie students know what it means to be a part of a community and the responsibility associated with that. All of us at USU have been impressed by the resiliency of our students and your willingness to do your part. Please continue your commitment by getting a COVID-19 test now in time for the Thanksgiving break.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


What Utah’s State of Emergency Means for Students

Sent on Nov. 9, 2020

Dear Students,

Governor Gary Herbert issued a new State of Emergency in Utah on Sunday night, Nov. 8, due to increased COVID-19 hospitalizations and unsustainable case rates. The Utah Department of Health has said that hospitalizations and ICUs are nearing capacity, and healthcare providers will be unable to care for Utahns in the coming days if this surge continues. It is essential for us to follow the Governor’s order to protect you, your family members, and your Aggie family.

Governor Herbert calls on us to take the following actions:

  • Wear a mask in public and when within six feet of anyone you don’t live with. This means wear a mask whenever you leave your home, apartment, or suite. The statewide mask mandate will remain in place for the foreseeable future.
  • You must keep casual social gatherings to household-only until Monday, Nov. 23. This means you must not gather with anyone you don’t live with in the same suite, apartment, dorm, or house for the next two weeks. Avoid common areas where you would gather with individuals from other households.

Weekly Testing for Students

In addition to the above precautions, Governor Herbert’s executive order requires that universities test all students weekly in order to identify potential asymptomatic cases of COVID-19 and prevent spread. This lines up with our efforts to provide testing to students prior to the Thanksgiving break. We want you and your families to be safe over the holiday season, and getting tested is essential for this.

For Logan students, USU will begin free weekly rapid testing for all students who live on campus on Wednesday, Nov. 11, and for students living off-campus on Monday, Nov. 16. We are working to ramp up weekly rapid testing on our Statewide campuses, but it may take a few weeks to bring the right resources to these locations.

Weekly rapid testing is done by self-swabbing (not deep nasal swab), and is typically not uncomfortable. You will receive more information in the coming days about how to schedule a test. Please continue to check your emails from the university.

Some students will not have to be tested weekly, including: student-athletes already being regularly tested, those who have tested positive within the last 90 days, and students who have left campus to study remotely at their permanent home.

Testing continues to be available for anyone who has symptoms or thinks they may have been exposed to COVID-19. Learn more at https://www.usu.edu/covid-19/testing/.

Classes Continue as Planned

Classes will continue as scheduled, including in-person classes, until the university moves to remote learning on Nov. 21.

Events Must be Virtual or Postponed/Canceled

All events and extracurricular activities must be made virtual, postponed, or canceled at least through the completion of Thanksgiving break, Monday, Nov. 30. This includes student clubs, intramurals, club sports, and speaker events not tied to classes.

Campus Facilities Remain Open

For now, USU campus facilities will remain open during regular hours, including the library, computer labs, and recreation facilities. Dining locations will remain open, but cafés will be take-out only due to limited seating capacity.

Thank you for your efforts to keep our university communities healthy and safe.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


COVID-19 Updates for Thanksgiving Break

Sent on Nov. 5, 2020 

Dear Students,

Thanksgiving break is only a few weeks away. Those of you planning to travel over the holiday are no doubt considering how you can protect yourself and others from the spread of COVID-19. 

Testing Available for those Leaving for Thanksgiving

To help you reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19, USU will provide testing to those who are leaving Cache Valley for Thanksgiving break. You can use the test result to determine your best course of action for the holiday. Please take a quick survey to help us plan for how many individuals would like to receive testing.

Complete the Survey>>

For those students who will stay on campus or in Cache Valley after Thanksgiving and through winter break, on-campus services will be available as they have been throughout fall semester, with some limited hours over winter break.

More Critical than Ever to Take Precautions 

I am deeply appreciative of the actions that you are taking to protect our university community so that we can maintain in-person learning, research and outreach activities. However, with rising infection rates, now is the time to increase precautions. Rising cases of COVID-19 in Utah are severely stressing health care systems, which is impacting the quality of care that sick individuals receive. USU’s Logan campus is in an area that has been designated by the state as having a “high” transmission level. Please do your part to protect yourself, USU students and employees, the local community, and your family members. 

  • Wear a face coveringanytime you are interacting with individuals outside your household. 
  • Get tested if you have symptoms or have had close contact with someone who has COVID-19.Getting tested is one of the most important steps you can take to prevent the spread of COVID-19. If you have been exposed to the virus and do not have symptoms, it is recommended that you wait 5-7 days to get tested in order to improve the accuracy of the test. 
  • Stay home if you are ill. We have heard many stories of COVID-19 beginning with very mild symptoms. Please stay home if you feel unwell, and get a free test on campus right away. 
  • Stay home if you are sick, waiting for test results, or asked to self-isolate or quarantine. Your actions protect others.
  • Limit social gatherings to 10or fewer people and wear masks when you meet. 

Thank you for all you have done to protect others and help USU continue to function. We still have many months before the pandemic is in the rear-view mirror, but I am proud of the resilience all of you have shown as we navigate this difficult time together.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


Welcome to Fall Semester

Email from President Cockett sent on August 31, 2020

Welcome Students,

I am so happy to see you back on campus and welcome you to fall semester. As you know, the coronavirus pandemic has affected our entire community in many ways, including over the weekend as we began testing students in four residence halls. You should have received a safety alert yesterday that wastewater monitoring on campus gave us an early warning of a potential rise in cases. The students affected are all being tested for COVID-19 and have been told to quarantine in their rooms until test results come back.

This was a perfect example of how our work to be ready for you over the summer prepared us for managing potential positive cases, even the day before the semester began.

This pandemic cannot quell our Aggie Family spirit. I am inspired by the ways we have all adapted to the many changes necessary to accommodate safety precautions in place to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection.

New USU guidelines and safety precautions

We want to help you thrive as you pursue educational and social opportunities. To better understand your responsibilities in this endeavor, please learn about the USU student guidelines for well-being. Also, I ask that you take the USU Protection Pledge to minimize the risk of COVID-19. To stay up-to-date on information and resources regarding the pandemic, visit USU’s COVID-19 webpage often or check for news updates on Utah State Today. You may also receive more safety alerts, as you did over the weekend, with information about what we are doing to address possible COVID-19 cases.

Positive COVID-19 cases, testing, and prevention

We have also prepared for the inevitable positive COVID-19 cases as we all come back on campus. We have a contact-tracing team in place to help us contain cases and a COVID CARE Team that is specifically tasked with supporting students who are asked to quarantine or isolate due to exposure to the coronavirus or a positive COVID-19 test. We also hope to have COVID-19 testing easily accessible on campus in the coming weeks.

As we move into the semester, it is essential that each of us follow the four prevention principles:

  1. Wear a face covering. USU has a policy on face coverings, and everyone must “mask up” in buildings and even outside.
  2. Practice social distancing. Stay 6 feet from individuals from other households.
  3. Practice prevention hygiene. Continue to wash your hands often, cover coughs and sneezes, and keep your study and living spaces clean and disinfected.
  4. Stay home when sick or exposed. The symptoms of COVID-19 are varied and can range from severe to non-existent (asymptomatic). If you develop symptoms, complete the COVID-19 Questionnaire so we can reach out with support.

Although it’s possible you may not experience symptoms or severe illness if infected with COVID-19, there are those around you who are undoubtedly at a higher risk, includiing some of your fellow students, local community members, and USU’s faculty and staff. Following the four prevention principles will help protect high-risk people.

Course delivery options and USU online education history

I know we are asking a lot of you, and we have also worked hard on our part to be ready for you. Faculty and staff have worked all summer to prepare your courses in multiple course delivery methods that allow for social distancing in classrooms. Learn more about these methods at USU Ready, a website developed to help students and faculty find the resources needed for a successful fall semester.

No matter how you are learning, or how we may have to change teaching this fall due to the pandemic, our faculty and staff are ready with courses that meet the high-quality standards of USU’s land-grant heritage. The university is currently celebrating the 25th anniversary of USU Online, which has brought digital education via the internet to more than 150,000 students from all 29 of Utah’s counties, all 50 states and 55 countries. We are confident in USU’s ability to educate students in a technology-enhanced learning environment.

Finally, please remember to take time for yourself and to enjoy the things that bring you joy (while wearing a mask and practicing social distancing). Discover what it means for you to be an Aggie. The connections and experiences you have at Utah State will forever impact your life. We are excited to have you here!

Wishing you all the best for a healthy, productive year at Utah State University.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


COVID Care Kits Available to Students

Email from Student Affairs sent on August 27, 2020

Dear Student, 

We hope you are staying well, enjoying your summer, and looking forward to a new semester. Please take two minutes to watch our welcome back video, full of tips on what to expect on campus and what life will look like this fall: 

As you already know, USU and the Division of Student Affairs have been creating well-being guidelines for students returning to our campuses. And we are asking all students, faculty, and staff to take the USU Protection Pledge to help keep our community healthy! 

USU Care Kits 

We’ll be giving each student a COVID Care Kit in the first few weeks of fall semester. Keep your kit in your backpack or whatever bag you bring to school, so you always have it handy. The kit will contain: 

  • Two USU face coverings/masks 
  • Hand sanitizer 
  • Thermometer 
  • COVID-19 Student Information Pocket Pamphlet 
  • Doing My Part Sticker 

 Find out how to get your kit: usu.edu/covid-19/carekits

If You Feel Sick 

Stay home and away from campus if you are sick, even with mild symptoms. Learn more about the symptoms to look for, when to get tested and how to self-isolate at www.usu.edu/covid-19/if-you-are-sick

Fill out the COVID Questionnaire if you: 

  • Are ill and getting tested 
  • Are waiting for test results 
  • Have received a positive COVID-19 test result 
  • Have had close contact with an individual who has a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 
  • Have been asked to quarantine or isolate  

Filling out the questionnaire activates the USU COVID CARE Team to help you with services, accommodations, and access to resources during quarantine or isolation.  

You can also download the Utah State Safe App to access the COVID-19 Questionnaire and connect directly with USU’s Department of Public Safety and its services. 

Questions? Please contact the Division of Student Affairs at (435) 797-1712 or studentaffairs@usu.edu.  You can find the most recent university news and updates about COVID-19 at usu.edu/covid-19.    

On another note: This past week, many of you received an email about taking the AlcoholEdu online course. If you are not a new student or have already taken AlcoholEdu, please disregard that email. A new message will be sent out to all those who need to complete the course. 

We are here to support you and help keep you safe. 

James Morales
Vice President of the Division of Student Affairs


Follow up on Town Hall

Sent on August 21, 2020

Dear Students,

Thank you to those who were able to join me for a Town Hall for students and families on Tuesday, August 18. Due to a technical error, some students did not receive the email invitation in time to participate. However, a recording of the Town Hall is available for you to watch. Also, I want to take this opportunity to reiterate a few points made in the Town Hall:

The Four Principles of Preventing COVID-19 Infection

By now, you should have heard USU discuss the four principles of prevention. Each of us is responsible to create a culture of caring where everyone shows respect for each other and supports the safety of others in our campus community. Following the four prevention principles below is vital for us to maintain in-person learning experiences:

  1. Wear a face covering. USU has a policy on face coverings, and everyone must “mask up” in buildings and outside if social distancing is difficult. If you cannot wear a mask, reach out to the Disability Resource Center to discuss accommodations, which include remote learning. All students will receive a COVID Care Kit with two masks, a thermometer, and hand sanitizer. More information about where to get your kit will come soon.
  2. Practice social distancing. Stay 6 feet from individuals from other households to minimize the spread of COVID-19. Your roommates or housemates are considered part of your household, but you should always wear a mask if you must be within 6 feet of those who don’t live with you. For the same reason, avoid handshakes, hugs, and high fives as these actions can be points of transmission.
  3. Stay home when sick. The symptoms of COVID-19 are varied and can range from severe to non-existent (asymptomatic). The Utah Department of Health recommends COVID-19 testing for anyone who has certain symptoms consistent with a COVID-19 infection.

    Fill out the COVID-19 questionnaire if you have tested positive for COVID-19, have been exposed to someone infected with COVID-19, or are waiting for COVID-19 test results. When you fill out the questionnaire, the USU COVID Care Team will reach out to you to help with academic accommodations and other services you may need to quarantine or isolate.
  4. Practicing prevention hygiene. Continue to wash your hands often, cover coughs and sneezes, and keep your study and living spaces clean and disinfected.

Student Fees Reduced

This week, students received an email announcing fall 2020 student fees would be reduced by $150 for full-time students on the Logan campus and by $95 for full-time students at Statewide Campuses. You will receive a refund either through direct deposit (if you have set that up) or through a check in the mail sometime in the next week.

USU is also currently working with the Utah System of Higher Education to evaluate student fees across the board to reexamine the use of tuition in place of fees to cover some of these costs, with a decision expected sometime this fall.  

Be USU Ready

I’m so excited to have students return to campus. We want to help you thrive as you pursue educational and social opportunities at Utah State University. However, that requires all of us doing our best to protect ourselves, each other, and our community. To better understand your responsibilities in this endeavor, please click on the USU student guidelines for well-being.

Also, I ask that you take the USU Protection Pledge to minimize the risk of COVID-19. This is the ideal moment to embrace the culture of caring embodied in USU’s Aggies Think Care Act initiative.

I wish you the best as you start fall semester. Please check your email frequently to stay up to date on new information.

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


Invitation to Town Hall for Students and Families

Sent on August 12, 2020

Dear Students and Families,

Please join me for a Town Hall for all students and their families on Tuesday, August 18, from 9:30 – 11 a.m. at Aggie Cast.

I will be joined by the following individuals to provide you with information and answer your questions:  

Sami Ahmed, President of USUSA Executive Council
Mica McKinney, Vice President for Legal Affairs
James Morales, Vice President for Student Affairs
Susan Perkins, Emergency Management Coordinator
Larry Smith, Interim Vice President for Statewide Campuses
Robert Wagner, Vice President for Academic and Instructional Services
Bill Plate, Vice President for Marketing and Communications.

We will provide information about fall semester classes, guidelines for students coming to campuses, and how we will address potential outbreaks of COVID-19 in our campus communities. You may submit a question to covid-19@usu.edu by 5 p.m. on Monday, August 17. You may also submit a question during the Town Hall.

You can also find additional information on USU’s website:

Sincerely,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


Fall Semester Class Delivery Methods

Email sent on July 1, 2020

Dear student,

As we look to creating an effective learning environment for the fall in the midst of the current pandemic, your health and safety is a top priority. Thank you for your patience as we evaluated the delivery methods for fall classes to minimize the spread of COVID-19 in our campus communities. We have several updates for you:

  • We have included your fall class schedule below as of June 30. Please note changes to class delivery methods. There may continue to be adjustments to the schedule between now and the beginning of fall semester. You can continue to check for updates at usu.edu. Learn more and watch a video about these delivery methods and expectations for fall at ready.usu.edu.
  • You can make changes to your class schedule at usu.edu. Please consider the class delivery methods in your schedule and whether you are at a higher risk of COVID-19 or live with someone who is. Before dropping a course, please be sure there are seats available in an equivalent course at your campus in the format you desire. If you decide to change a class, check with your academic advisor to stay on track to graduate.
  • For those classes that are in-person, face coverings will be required. Seating will be marked to ensure social distancing and high-touch surfaces will be cleaned regularly to help minimize the risk of COVID-19. If your courses require a classroom, room assignments may be adjusted at a later date, and students should check frequently to note any changes.
  • We have expanded support to help students meet the challenges created by the pandemic. We encourage you to explore the student web resources specific to the delivery methods of your courses, so you are prepared for a successful fall experience. We will add more resources throughout the summer in preparation for fall, so please check periodically.

 

  • For those students facing disability-related challenges from new class delivery methods, contact the Disability Resource Center to learn about options that can help. DRC-supported accommodations including captions, audio reading materials, and accessible testing.

For questions about your classes, USU has a live chat feature, as well as phone and email support through the USU Registrar. If you need help with technology issues, contact the USU Service Desk.

We are very excited to welcome students back to campus this fall, but we will all have to do our part to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our campus communities so we can continue to teach and learn face to face. As you prepare for a successful fall semester, be ready to wear a face covering in all your classrooms, as well as when social distancing is difficult.

Together, we will continue to protect our USU family and help you achieve your academic goals.

Best regards,

Frank Galey
Executive Vice President and Provost

Robert Wagner
Vice President for Academic and Instructional Services


Email About Fall Semester Classes

Sent on June 18, 2020

Dear Student,

As we get ready for fall semester, we know that you have many questions. We are finalizing plans, and we want to share with you what we know at this point. Universities face unique challenges in preventing the transmission COVID-19, and we are taking unique steps to minimize the risk of spread and keep our students and employees on our campuses this fall.

Changes for Fall Semester 2020

The schedule for fall semester has been adjusted. The day allotted for “fall break” (Oct. 16) is canceled, and because of the Thanksgiving break, teaching after Friday, Nov. 20, will be remote only. This will allow those students whose permanent home is away from our campuses to stay there until the beginning of spring semester and, therefore, reduce the opportunity for spread of the coronavirus in the classroom after Thanksgiving.

Teaching Formats for Fall Classes

We are excited to have students back to our campuses this fall. Classes will be taught in a variety of formats to ensure social distancing in classroom settings and to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19. Classroom delivery methods will include: traditional face-to-face or IVC, web broadcast, online, hybrid face-to-face, as well as a blend of these.

We are currently making changes to the teaching formats for fall classes, and when these are final, you will receive an email to review your fall schedule. Please wait to check on your courses until you receive the email – expected in the next few weeks. USU has offered online courses and distance education for decades, and we will leverage this expertise to provide you with effective learning opportunities. In the coming weeks, we will also provide more information about academic support resources to help you prepare for a successful fall semester.

Classroom Expectations for Fall

All students and instructors will be expected to wear face coverings and to social distance in physical classrooms this fall. We will also be taking attendance to help with tracing contacts in case someone in the class is diagnosed with COVID-19.

Everyone Must Do Their Part

In order to be together and remain on campus this fall, every person in our campus community – student, staff, and faculty – must do their part to minimize risk to the rest of our community.

At Utah State, we often talk about Aggies Think Care Act and about taking personal responsibility for the well-being of our community. This has never been more relevant than right now, when your actions could significantly affect the health and lives of others. We appreciate your commitment to our Aggie family and doing your part so we can be together and stay together this fall.

We will continue to send you emails as we finalize plans for student life and housing/residence life, and you can look for updates at www.usu.edu/covid-19. Until then, stay Aggie Strong!

Best regards,

Frank Galey
Executive Vice President and Provost

James Morales
Vice President for Student Affairs

Robert Wagner
Vice President for Academic and Instructional Services


Email to Students about Fall Classes

Sent May 28, 2020

Dear USU Fall 2020 Students: 

USU recently announced plans for Fall 2020 Semester. Beginning Monday, June 1, 2020, there will be changes occurring to the instructional methods of some of USU’s courses. These changes will accommodate the institution’s response to COVID-19 and its preparations for a successful fall semester. We anticipate that the majority of changes to the class schedule will occur during June. Once these changes are complete, you will receive a follow-up email to review any changes to the courses on your schedule.  

USU is committed to minimizing the risk of COVID-19 and providing a supportive learning environment for students and instructors. This fall, you will see a variety of instructional methods that are being used to provide a balanced teaching and learning experience. As you learn of changes to your courses please consider the following:

  • Most instructional methods for Fall 2020 will require students to have access to a computer and the internet.  For certain instructional methods students will be notified of specific technology requirements.
  • USU will provide expanded academic resources to help students be successful with the new instructional methods.
  • Courses that meet in person will be subject to social distancing and other COVID-19 protocols to protect students and instructors.

We know that continuing your education is important to you. In addition to minimizing the risk of COVID-19, helping you achieve your educational goals is USU’s top priority. We have decades of experience in providing access to a high-quality educational experience in a variety of innovative ways, while addressing complex challenges and circumstances. 

Please check your preferred USU email frequently as we continue to communicate and get ready for a successful fall 2020 semester. Join us in being USU-Ready

Best regards, 

Frank Galey
Executive Vice President and Provost

James Morales
Vice President, Student Affairs


Email to Graduation Class of 2020 

Sent May 27, 2020

Dear USU Graduation Class of 2020,

First, and with as much excitement and fanfare as I can proclaim in an email, I congratulate you for graduating from Utah State University. I am very disappointed that I have not been able to stand in front of you in full academic regalia, celebrating this momentous occasion in person with you, and your families and friends.

Our entire Aggie Family looks forward every year to the celebratory commencement ceremonies held across our campuses where we officially confer your degree in person. It was with great sadness that, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we postponed the 2020 commencement activities in April. Today, it is equally disheartening to tell you that we will not be able to hold commencement-related ceremonies in August or September, as we had announced in March. 

As the public health situation has continued to unfold, we believe it would be difficult to host the number of people who traditionally attend our commencement ceremonies while following safety protocols for social distancing and avoiding mass gatherings. Such a gathering could also have negative impacts on the communities where our campuses are located.

It is important and highly appropriate that we honor our 2020 graduates and therefore, we have discussed a number of possibilities for the future. Though specific details about those celebrations remain unclear given the uncertainties surrounding the pandemic, the university will revisit plans for an in-person event once the risk of COVID-19 infection decreases significantly. At that time, we will provide more information to the class of 2020.

Thank you for your continued patience as we work through the COVID-19 pandemic. Please know that I am honored to say that, even under these unfortunate circumstances, you have joined a proud and prominent Aggie Family alumni.

All the best,

Noelle E. Cockett
President


Email to Students 

Sent April 3, 2020

Dear USU Student,

We regret that these last few weeks have been very hectic for you. However, we have made several adjustments to help you navigate through this. Please read the full message so you are aware of important updates for the conclusion of the semester as well as issues affecting your health and safety.

PASS/FAIL DEADLINE EXTENDED TO MAY 19

Students have until May 19 to convert letter grades to pass/fail for any semester-long or second block courses taken during Spring 2020 Semester. This new deadline allows you to review your final letter grade (posted by the instructor no later than May 5) before making a decision on pass/fail. The University has also agreed that Spring Semester 2020 classes with a pass grade will fulfill almost all major requirements and prerequisites at USU. While many accreditation and licensure requirements have agreed to accept a pass grade for spring semester classes, some exceptions exist, especially in graduate programs. Therefore, if you are considering converting a letter grade to pass/fail, you must first consult with your academic or major advisor so you understand the exceptions.  

WITHDRAWAL DEADLINE EXTENDED TO APRIL 1

The deadline for withdrawal from a class has moved from March 18 to April 15 for Spring Semester 2020. However, if you are considering withdrawing from a class, you must first consult with your academic advisor as this change may affect your financial aid. The withdrawal may also affect progress on your program of study.

SUMMER AND FALL SEMESTERS

Registration for Summer Semester 2020 began on April 1. Summer classes for the first 7-week session and the 14-week session will be delivered online or remotely. The second 7-week session (beginning June 22) may have face-to-face courses depending upon how the COVID-19 situation unfolds. If needed, these face-to-face courses will be transitioned to remote delivery prior to the beginning of the second 7-week session.

Registration for Fall Semester 2020 begins on April 6 with the fall schedule proceeding as originally planned before COVID-19 restrictions were put in place. 

GUIDELINES FOR SELF-ISOLATION/QUARANTINE

We have received questions about when an individual should quarantine or self-isolate. You must follow guidance from public health officials in order to protect yourself, your friends, and your family.

STUDENT RESOURCES ARE AVAILABLE (REMOTELY)

If you are struggling with moving to remote learning or if you need help with increased anxiety and stress, please reach out. USU’s academic and support services are still providing services remotely and numerous mental health resources are available to you.

Finally, please continue to follow our public health official directions to stay home as much as possible and practice social distancing.

All the best,

Frank Galey, Executive Vice President and Provost

James Morales, Vice President for Student Affairs


Email to Students 

Sent March 16, 2020

Dear USU Students: 

As a follow up to President Noelle Cockett’s message on the evening of Saturday, March 14, we want to provide you with updates. 

On-Campus Housing

If possible, we encourage you to leave your on-campus housing and return to your permanent home. Prorated refunds are available on housing and meal plans. USU will continue to provide services to those who are not able to leave. 

On-Campus Recreational Facilities
Due to the potential risk of spreading the coronavirus, the Aggie Recreation Center (ARC), the USU Fieldhouse, and recreational facilities in HPER will be closed to the public beginning Tuesday, March 17. 

Remote Learning

You will receive information from your instructor(s) on how to proceed remotely in your course(s) by Monday, March 16 at 5:00 pm.  Your instructors have been directed to communicate with you in one of two ways:

  1. In your Canvas course page (https://usu.instructure.com/ ) as an Announcement.  You can customize your Canvas communication preferences to include both email and/or text.
  2. If your instructor is already communicating with you via another mechanism, you may continue to receive information using that method. 

If you do not receive communication from your instructor by Monday, March 16 at 5:00 pm, please reach out to them. If you still haven’t heard from your instructor by Tuesday, March 17 at 12:00 pm (noon) contact the Provost’s Office: provost@usu.edu

Sincerely,

Frank Galey, Executive Vice President and Provost
James Morales, Vice President for Student Affairs


Email to Students 

Sent March 12, 2020

Dear Students:

As you know, USU is canceling all classes on Friday, March 13, through Tuesday, March 17. Beginning Wednesday, March 18, USU will begin making courses available online. In light of this, please do not make any immediate decisions about your housing situation or leaving campus permanently.

Some online courses will be available Wednesday, March 18, while other courses may take longer to be available online for students. Additionally, a limited number of courses may still require in-person participation (i.e. labs, studios), with additional safety procedures to help protect students. 

In the coming days you will receive information via email about the availability of your courses online as well as additional course participation requirements. Although classes are temporarily closed, and many courses will be taught online beginning next week, the university will remain open. Residence halls, dining services, the library, computer labs, Counseling and Psychological Services, and other student services will continue to be available to students. Students are not being asked to leave campus but to continue using best practices for prevention consistent with the university’s recommendations.

Please be diligent in monitoring your email from the university, including communication from your instructors and updates on the COVID-19 website.

Thank you,

Francis Galey, Provost 

James Morales, Vice President for Student Affairs