Institutes of Higher Education (IHE): COVID-19
Minnesota needs a strong higher education sector that supports students and communities in returning to on-campus instruction at colleges and universities. This must be balanced with a need for everyone to take steps to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and to minimize infecting people at high risk of getting very sick.
Traveling off campus means you may bring COVID-19 with you if you have contact with someone with COVID-19 before you leave or while traveling. It is important to remember the following:
- If you know you will be traveling, lay low before you go! Stay home and stay at least 6 feet apart from others as much as you can before you travel. Stay away from large crowds, gatherings, etc. Wear a face covering whenever you leave your room.
- Get tested. If your test is negative, continue to lay low until you go. If you are positive, you need to stay home and away from other people (isolation) as much as possible for at least 10 days.
- During travel, wear a face covering, stay at least 6 feet away from others as much as possible, and wash your hands a lot, or use hand sanitizer.
- If you’ve left campus for an extended period of time, limit who you see and where you go before heading back to campus.
- Once you return to campus, lay low when you get back, in case you were exposed to COVID-19. You should do this for at least a week – two weeks if you can. Some campuses will ask you to stay in your room, keep to yourself, and not participate in activities. This helps slow down the spread of COVID-19 on your campus and in your community; it also helps to prevent new variants of COVID-19 from spreading. You will want to check with your campus on their policies before you travel.
- Remember to get tested five to seven days after you return to campus.
- Wear a mask when you leave your room and limit the time you spend around your roommates or in shared living spaces for 14 days after returning.
- Stay at least 6 feet away from others as much as possible for the first two weeks after you get where you are going. And don’t be around anyone who is high risk of getting very sick from COVID-19 for at least 14 days.
- Wash your hands often.
- Get tested five to seven days after you arrive on campus after being away for an extended period, especially if your travel included being around many people (e.g., airports, bus rides, larger car pools). It can take up to 14 days to show symptoms.
- Any time you start to have COVID-19 symptoms, get tested right away; stay by yourself and away from others while waiting for results.
- If you have close contact with someone who has COVID-19, you should get tested about five to seven days after your contact. If test results are positive, follow recommendations on Information for Confirmed Cases and Contacts.
- If you have had contact with someone with COVID-19, the safest option is to stay home and away from others (quarantine) for 14 days. In certain situations, you may end your quarantine earlier, but you should consult with your college or university and follow their policy.
- Guidance for Mitigating COVID-19 at Higher Education Institutions (PDF)
This guidance document features several topics to aid in planning.
- Recommendations for Different Levels of COVID-19 Transmission Among Higher Education Institutions (PDF)
- COVID-19 Intercollegiate Sports Guidance for Higher Education (PDF)
- Guidance for COVID-19 Cases and Outbreaks in Higher Education (PDF)
- Isolation and Quarantine Quick Reference Guidance for Higher Education (PDF)
- COVID-19 and Higher Education: Frequently Asked Questions
- Abbot BinaxNOW™ COVID-19 AG Card Test (PDF)
Description and provider instructions for distribution to institutes of higher education.
Safety and well-being
Cleaning and disinfecting
- COVID-19 Cleaning and Disinfecting Guidance for Institutes of Higher Education
- Frequently Asked Questions About COVID-19 for Facilities Service and Cleaning Staff
- Minnesota Office of Higher Education: Coronavirus Updates
- University of Minnesota: COVID-19 Updates
- Minnesota State: Students, employees, and visitors must complete a COVID-19 health assessment prior to entering any Minnesota State campus or the system office
- Minnesota Private Colleges: COVID-19 updates
- CDC: Considerations for Institutes of Higher Education
- CDC: COVID-19 Guidance for Shared or Congregate Housing
- American College Health Association: COVID-19 Resources