University of Minnesota Duluth students will go back to attending classes in person come fall. The school announced Friday that all its campuses — Duluth, the Twin Cities, Crookston, Morris and Rochester — will fully return to on-campus instruction for the fall 2021 semester.
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, UMD and its sister schools have been operating under a hybrid model, with classes offered both online and in person.
“Given projections on the number of Minnesotans who will be vaccinated, and relying on continued guidance from our public health colleagues, we are increasingly reassured that we can bring students, faculty and staff back to our campuses while effectively minimizing the risk to our community,'' University of Minnesota President Joan Gabel said in a written statement.
The University of Minnesota says it will operate this fall in a manner "consistent with state guidance and public health considerations related to the pandemic." The university pledged to continue to provide access to COVID-19 testing for all students, faculty and staff. It will continue to require face coverings and social distancing on campus until further notice.
University officials say they will reserve the right to adjust plans, based on further coronavirus developments and any unforeseen spike in case counts.
“The high level of compliance and compassion that our community has already exhibited by taking personal responsibility for reducing the spread of the pandemic has significantly lowered the positivity rate on our campuses,” said Jill DeBoer, director of the University’s Health Emergency Response Office. “In fact, several of our campuses have observed zero cases of COVID-19 over the past few weeks and we continue to have no record of cases spread in the classroom. This example is a testament to the shared commitment and actions of everyone at the university.”