Minnesota State colleges and universities extend spring break by a week

The colleges and universities of Minnesota State will have an extended spring break, the system announced Thursday.

Currently, the students of all Minnesota State schools are on spring break through March 16. Now, their break will extend to March 22, with classes resuming March 23.

Minnesota State colleges and universities include Minnesota State-Mankato, Winona State, St. Cloud State, Bemidji State and many more. 

While there are no classes during that week, all administrators, faculty and staff will still report to work. During that time, educators will prepare to teach classes using “alternative modes of delivery.”

“We are continuously reviewing a range of strategies to limit the spread of COVID-19 and its impact on our campuses and the communities in which we live and serve,” said Devinder Malhotra, chancellor of Minnesota State. “I am committed to taking all steps necessary to protect the health and safety of our students, our faculty, and our staff. I am also tremendously grateful to all of the faculty and staff for the sacrifices they have had to make, as well as for their hard work addressing this challenging and dynamic situation. Our goal is to accommodate students and help them continue their education despite interruptions caused by COVID-19.”

All campuses, residence halls, dining facilities and student support services will remain open and staffed during the extended break.

All gatherings totaling more than 100 people have been cancelled until May 1 as well.

Students will hear from their instructors for specific details about their courses in the coming weeks.

Other colleges, including the University of Wisconsin-MadisonIowa State and the University of Iowa and the University of St. Thomas have also made changes.

The Minnesota Department of Health stressed the importance of all Minnesotans continuing to do those things that can limit the spread of the coronavirus:

  • Stay home and away from others if you are sick.    
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with your elbow or a tissue.    
  • Wash your hands frequently for 20 seconds with soap and water.   
  • Avoid touching your face throughout the day.

The virus that causes COVID-19 is spread primarily by respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how influenza is spread. It can also spread when people touch surfaces that have been contaminated by an infected person and then touch their eyes, nose or mouth.

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider immediately. For more information from the CDC, click here.

More information about coronavirus can be found on MDH’s Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) website. MDH has set up a COVID-19 public hotline that is open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The hotline number is 651-201-3920.