As promised, the COVID response team met April 9, two weeks following the end of Spring Break, to review the data and consider changes to our COVID-19 safety protocols. We are very encouraged that the number of cases on campus remains low. Thank you for all that you have done to help contain the pandemic. Also encouraging is the moderate level of community transmission and the recent drop in hospitalizations locally. 

While these are encouraging signs, we are concerned about the vaccination rates: Missouri has one of the lowest vaccination rates in the country, and Buchanan County’s rate is below Missouri’s. As a reminder, today is the day all Missourians over the age of 16 became eligible for the vaccine. If you haven’t already scheduled your appointment to be vaccinated, we encourage you to do so. 

After weighing this data, and considering recommendations of the CDC and other health officials, we are making the following adjustments to our safety protocols for the rest of the spring semester.

  • Events

    • All campus departments and groups wanting to hold an event must use the Event Approval Form.

    • All events, whether indoors or outdoors, must be scheduled in a reservable space.

    • Indoor events: we will continue to enforce COVID capacities in indoor spaces. The only food allowed at indoor events will be prepackaged, grab-and-go snacks.

    • Outdoor events: Food (snacks and meals) are permitted.

  • Campus visitors

    • Campus groups can bring in visitors, and external groups can reserve Missouri Western spaces, as long as COVID protocols are followed.

    • Students living in the residence halls will continue to be prohibited from having day or overnight visitors from outside the campus community in their rooms.

  • Travel

    • Student groups are now allowed to travel to off-campus meetings or events as long as COVID protocols are followed.

All other protocols, including our face covering and physical distancing requirements, will remain in place through at least the end of the spring semester. We will continue to evaluate data and guidance from health organizations as we make plans for the summer and fall.