Coronavirus Update

Mar. 8, 2020

Dear faculty, staff, and administrators:

As noted in President Harris' most recent email, the health and safety of our campus community is a top priority. Many students, faculty, and staff may have traveled during spring break and as everyone returns to campus, we want you to have information to protect yourself and our community from getting and spreading respiratory illnesses like coronavirus (COVID-19).

There remain no reported cases of the virus on our campus, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention currently classifies the virus as low risk to the American public. While there is currently no vaccine to protect against the Coronavirus, you can take practical steps to reduce the risk of being exposed to any respiratory illnesses. The best way to keep our community safe and healthy is through common-sense practices found in the CDC's Guidance. Each one of us can play an important role in this effort.

Everyone can practice everyday preventive behaviors.

  • Stay home when sick.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes.
  • Frequently wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces (e.g., doorknobs, keyboards, cell phones, work stations).
  • Keep your hands away from your mouth, nose, and eyes.

We are encouraging USD students, faculty, staff, and administrators to stay home, rest, and practice social distancing if you are sick.

Those who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are recommended to stay home and to practice social isolation. Even when on the road to recovery, you are encouraged to stay home and practice social distancing until you are free of fever (100.4oF/37.8oC or greater), signs of a fever, or any other symptoms for at least 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicine, such as Tylenol, Ibuprofen, or cough suppressant.

If an employee needs to report an illness, discuss any specific arrangements that may be needed, or has any questions or concerns, please contact the Employee Relations team in Human Resources at 619-260-4594.

The CDC has information to help faculty, staff, students, and their families understand COVID-19 and additional steps they can take to protect themselves:

We have also created a website dedicated to helpful information and frequently asked questions and answers about the Coronavirus and its impact on our campus community.

It is our hope that during this time, all members of the USD community will act with compassion and seek to ensure that all people are treated with dignity and respect. It is important that we work together to maintain a supportive and inclusive community as we learn more about how to support the overall well-being of our Torero family.   


Ky Synder
Vice President, University Operations