August 11, 2022: COVID-19 Protocols at St. Thomas this fall

Dear St. Thomas students, faculty and staff, The fall semester is only a few weeks away (for our law school, it’s right around the corner), and we’re looking forward to having all students back on our campuses. It’s hard to believe we’re embarking on our third full academic year in person since the start of the pandemic; while we expect life to look much closer to normal this year, there are still important protocol updates to know about:

Stay Home When Sick! This is still no time to “tough it out” if you’re feeling under the weather. If you’re not feeling well, please protect the people you see every day (your professors, co-workers, classmates, etc.) by staying home. If you’re experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, please get tested.

Reporting All students, faculty and staff members are required to report to the university if they test positive for COVID-19 using either the student self-report form, or the faculty/staff self-report form – both of which can be found on OneStThomas.

Testing We strongly encourage all students – especially our residents – to take a rapid antigen test at least 24 hours before returning to campus. If you test positive, please stay home.

Additionally, please be aware the state of Minnesota is no longer providing free tests to colleges and universities, which means the Center for Well-Being (CWB) will need to charge a fee for administering tests. CWB can bill your health insurance if available.

We encourage everyone, however, to obtain free tests from the U.S. Postal Service or from the U.S. government by signing up at or calling (800) 232‑0233 (TTY 1‑888‑720‑7489). Minnesota residents can also order tests from the Minnesota Department of Health. Additionally, many Twin Cities clinics provide free testing; please check with your insurance providers for additional information. Free at-home tests may also be available through your health insurer.

Face Coverings One difference you’ll notice is that face coverings are no longer required indoors except at the Center for Well-Being. Our hope is to keep this policy in place throughout the semester. As stated in May, we will closely monitor the situation and make decisions as needed. Those decisions will include whether to reinstate campus face covering requirements if the situation worsens. Based on the total on-campus population, for example, the following conditions may lead to reinstating the requirement:

  • If the number of on-campus cases is 3% or more over a two-week period
  • If the community level for COVID-19 is rated “high” by the CDC in either Ramsey or Hennepin Counties
  • If city leaders require face coverings in city buildings or put other mitigation policies in place

Website and Hotline Please access our COVID-19 website for additional information, including our official response plan, the university’s weekly cases dashboard (which is updated every Monday), quarantine and isolation guidelines and other resources. You can also call our COVID-19 Info Line at (651) 962‑6133 for nonmedical questions. One final note – the university is aware that the U.S. government has officially declared monkeypox (MPX) a national public health emergency. St. Thomas is monitoring the situation accordingly and is in contact with MDH for guidance. We will keep the community updated as the situation develops. Thank you all for your cooperation. The University Action and Response Team