St. Olaf College | COVID-19

June 16, 2020 at 10:42 a.m.

To St. Olaf College faculty and staffFrom Michael Goodson, Vice President – Human Resources

Dear Colleagues,

Currently, the State of Minnesota is under a Stay Safe Plan that is allowing more businesses to open, yet still emphasizes the need for protocols to mitigate the transmission of COVID-19. The health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff continue to be the College’s primary concern. Although it has been announced that we plan to start the academic year on August 20, 2020, for now, the campus remains essentially closed.

Therefore, to abide by the Stay Safe Plan, anyone who can work from home still should do so. Allowing only a limited number of employees on campus better enables the College to minimize the potential exposure for students remaining on campus and it allows us to better focus our attention on the plans for returning students, faculty, and staff to campus. We have been made aware that more faculty and staff have been returning to campus recently so we’d like to clearly outline the expectations and protocols. Additionally, as summer is the usual time for travel and vacations, we are providing the following reminder and guidance.

Traveling to Campus

If you have a compelling need to return to campus, you must seek approval from the PLT member your team reports to in order to do so. Everyone returning to campus must follow the protocols required by the State of Minnesota outlined in the COVID-19 Preparedness Plan for On-Campus Work, complete safety training, and complete a health questionnaire each day immediately before returning to work on campus. If you are ill or have a need to self-quarantine, please see the Sick or Self Isolation Notice protocols outlined below.

Gatherings and Personal Travel

The summer months are upon us and warmer weather typically means personal travel (different from everyday activities, away from your local area), outdoor recreation, and gatherings with others (with people outside your household). While we recognize the benefits of these activities, St. Olaf strongly discourages unnecessary travel in accordance with CDC guidelines, because travel increases your chances of getting infected and spreading COVID-19. In order to protect our community, we ask that you please keep in mind the Stay Safe Plan, which encourages staying close to home and limiting in-person gatherings.

Sick or Self Isolation Notice and Returning to Work Following COVID-19 Illness/Quarantine Request

As a reminder, the Sick or Self Isolation Notice must be completed if an employee:

  • Is exposed to someone who may have or has COVID-19
  • Has a suspected case of COVID-19
  • Has a confirmed case of COVID-19
  • Indicates on the daily health questionnaire that they have symptoms that cannot be attributed to another health condition
  • Has traveled abroad

Then, following the illness/quarantine timeframe, the Return to Work Following COVID-19 Illness/Quarantine Request must be completed prior to returning to work on campus.

Thank you for all of the work you’ve done and will continue to do to keep our campus community safe and healthy. If you have any questions about the above-mentioned protocols and expectations, please don’t hesitate to contact us at


Mike Goodson