Campus Updates for Students

Campus Update

April 27, 2021

Students, Faculty and Staff:

On Monday, April 26, 2021, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released a statement indicating that, due to the increasing number of vaccinations, face masks will no longer be required when individuals are outside in groups of 1,000 or less.

In light of this recent announcement, Murray State University will no longer be requiring our students, faculty, staff and campus visitors to wear a face mask while outdoors but all other health and safety protocols remain in effect.

All indoor face mask requirements will remain unchanged at this time, including but not limited to, requiring individuals to wear a face mask in the classroom and inside public buildings. As a reminder, there is currently a face mask mandate in place by the Commonwealth of Kentucky for individuals in indoor spaces and at events with over 1,000 in attendance. The University will continue to adhere to that mandate.

We do ask that everyone continue to comply with all other Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, including but not limited to, wearing a face mask indoors and maintaining six-foot social distancing when both outside and inside.

A new face mask infographic was recently published by the CDC that may provide further guidance.

Additionally, we highly encourage any member of our campus community who has not yet received a vaccine to please sign up for one at one of our community’s many retail locations, such as Walgreens and Walter’s Pharmacy, or any additional healthcare location.

Thank you.

 

Past Updates

March 25, 2021

March 25, 2021

Good Afternoon Murray State Students.

First, I want to thank you again for all you have done during the past year to ensure that our main campus, as well as our regional campuses, operate in a safe and healthy manner as we adjusted University operations in every area due to the pandemic.  

The past year has been difficult for everyone but we are continuing to move forward in a positive manner.  We are also seeing light at the end of the tunnel and the beginning of the end of this pandemic as vaccines are ramped up across the country and COVID-19 cases are declining in most areas.

As you know, during the past few weeks we have amended our campus Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines regarding capacity requirements for student activities and other events due to the Governor’s Office updating its existing indoor capacity limits to 60 percent.  We are adjusting these areas, safely and carefully, as we move forward toward Spring and Summer.  Please note that these capacity changes do not include classroom spaces; all classroom capacities will remain the same throughout the remainder of the semester.

To date, we have had a very good semester as we continue to partner with the Calloway County Health Department and others regarding COVID-19 vaccinations, while keeping COVID-19 cases minimized as Kentucky turns the corner on this pandemic.  

Importantly, beginning later today or tomorrow you will have the opportunity to schedule a COVID-19 vaccination at the CFSB Center Regional Vaccination site for next week.  Please watch for an email or text alert that will be sent out once this opportunity becomes available.

The following are several updates which you will find of interest as we move forward:

Racer Safe and Healthy Guidance Adjustments (Campus Events/Student Activities)

Housing

  • As of March 8, 2021, the Campus Housing Visitation Policy is now in Phase 2. 
  • Visits by both on- and off-campus MSU students are now permitted in the residence halls from 8 a.m. to midnight each day. 
  • Please refer to the Visitation Policy for additional details.

Dining

  • Winslow Dining Hall and the T-Room are now operating at 60 percent dine-in capacity.
  • Chick-fil-A is also offering limited dine-in spaces and patio dining is open.

Capacities Student Groups/Campus Activities

  • The allowable capacity for all indoor spaces will be 60 percent, with the exception of our academic classrooms and the previously-approved plans from the state for the CFSB Center. 
  • Events are also being scheduled for the Cherry Exposition Center for the remainder of the semester with capacity limits in place and all safe and healthy guidelines followed.
  • Facilities Management has established capacity numbers for all indoor spaces that would be used for student groups and/or campus activities.
  • Please direct questions to the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs (via Dr. Don Robertson at drobertson@murraystate.eduor 270-809-6831) regarding meetings, events and capacities.

Bauernfeind Wellness Center

  • Intramural Sports will be offering a 3v3 basketball league beginning on March 29, 2021, which will be played in the Bauernfeind Wellness Center, Court 1. 
  • Capacity of the Free Weight Area has also increased from 12 to 20 students. 
  • Please continue to visit the Campus Recreation and Wellness web page for future updates.

Commencement May 7 and 8, 2021

  •  We are planning in-person Commencement ceremonies for both 2020 and Spring and Summer 2021 graduates.  We are also planning an in-person Senior Breakfast for graduating students on Tuesday, April 27, 2021, beginning at 8 a.m. in the CFSB Center (Main Arena Floor).  The Hitimu Celebration and Lavender Celebration will be held on Saturday, May 1, 2021 (time and location to be announced).
  • A survey was sent to students in mid-March regarding Commencement in order to gather a preliminary count of those wishing to participate. 
  • There will be capacity limitations and other health and safety guidelines will be in place for all events.
  • Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Tim Todd has provided additional details in an email dated March 24, 2021.  Please continue to visit the Commencementwebsite for further details.

Furthermore and I want to stress, we cannot let our guard down until this pandemic is over.  The continued adherence to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines is vitally important.  Face masks and social distancing are still required on campus, including in classrooms.  As a reminder, all changes above are also in line with our state and local health officials and their recommendations.

The following are some additional guideposts as we prepare for the Fall 2021 Semester which will look more like 2019.  This is not intended to be a comprehensive list with answers to every question but provide some broad themes.  Additional guidance will be issued as we are provided more information from state and local health officials.  

Transitioning to Normal Campus Operations

  • After Commencement on May 8, 2021, we will begin transitioning to normal operations while adhering to continued guidance from our state and local health officials, as well as the Centers for Disease Control. We will make all adjustments to operations in a safe and healthy manner.
  • We are a nationally-recognized, residential, comprehensive university; primarily offering in-person classes and academic experiences.  I am very proud of our high-quality reputation and excellent faculty who ensure that teaching and learning are at the core of what we do at MSU.  
  • The in-person class experience, advising and student interaction is vitally important to retention, recruiting and student success.  As we prepare for Fall 2021, in-person classes will return to 2019 levels.  Preliminarily, as we prepare to load course schedules for the Summer and Fall 2021 semesters, we are at or exceed those levels.
  • In addition, we have made significant investments in technology, training and online and remote learning since 2018 and will continue to enhance these delivery modes and academic offerings in order to benefit our students who choose these methods of course delivery.
  • For Fall 2021, residential activities and campus life will look more like 2019 with adherence to health and safety guidelines in place at that time.  In the near future, we will be announcing our approach for planned improvements and new residential housing considerations to further enhance this component of our campus.
  • Furthermore, this Summer we will be having many in-person camps, the Commonwealth Honors Academy, Racer Nation Orientation (Summer O), among other events, with optional virtual components for those individuals who desire this method. Again, all activities will be conducted in a safe and healthy manner, as we begin to turn the corner to normalcy for Fall 2021.
  • Regarding Education Abroad opportunities, we are monitoring international travel restrictions very closely, along with state and federal guidance in this area.  We will have more to report in the coming weeks.

In the weeks to come, we will finalize additional details on all of these items and more as we move forward safely and return to the traditional campus atmosphere, which we have all come to know and expect at Murray State University.  Let’s continue to move forward in a positive fashion this semester and finish strong.

Bob

March 5, 2021

March 5, 2021

Students,

I hope the spring semester continues to go well for each of you. Please see below for important updates:

  • Beginning on Monday, March 8, 2021, Murray State University (MSU) will begin adjusting the current capacity restrictions for indoor spaces and facilities on campus while remaining in adherence with all state health guidelines. The allowable capacity will be 60 percent for all indoor spaces, with the exception of the previously-approved plans from the state for the CFSB Center.
  • Also beginning March 8, the Campus Housing Visitation Policy will shift to Phase 2. Visits by both on- and off-campus MSU students will be permitted in the residence halls from 8 a.m. to midnight each day. Residents will be expected to escort their guests from the building prior to midnight and will not be permitted to check-in guests until visitation resumes at 8 a.m. Visitors (other MSU students) must present their new RacerCard ID’s that were issued last fall. Please refer to the Visitation Policy for additional details.
  • Over the next few days, we will be assessing capacities, locations and guidelines for outdoor events for campus activities and student programs. An update on this will be provided soon.

All Racer Safe and Healthy guidelines remain in effect, such as social distancing and the wearing of face masks.

Racers see bright days ahead. As shared last week, we are actively making plans for a more traditional spring, summer and fall. Let’s all continue to do our part with making good decisions at all times, as we have started the beginning phases to end the pandemic.

Sincerely,

Bob Jackson, President

February 25, 2021

February 25, 2021

Dear Campus Community:

I am asked on a daily basis about our expectations for Summer and Fall 2021. As we approach the beginning of the end to this pandemic and as vaccinations become more plentiful, we are actively planning for the Summer and next Fall. We must be optimistic and positive as more individuals are vaccinated each day and COVID-19 case counts continue to decline. And, as always, we will continue to focus on a safe and healthy campus environment for our students, faculty, staff and the broader community.

We are working to ensure that Summer 2021 events and the Fall 2021 Semester look more like Fall 2019 with academic course deliveries returning to normal; campus activities, traditions we love and student life becoming more normal; Racer Athletics events returning with regular Fall sports and all other components of our traditional, nationally-recognized college experience. Again, these are our aspirational goals as we move forward and I remain optimistic as we plan ahead.

Murray State University is truly a special place. For the past 12 months, we have all remained flexible in very challenging times but have not lost our focus on achieving the goals set before us. 2020 and early 2021 have been difficult and I know we are all looking for a return to normal as we plan ahead. Earlier this month, nearly 700 admitted students and their families took part in our successful Admitted Student Kickoff event. Just as we are all desiring a return to normal, our new, incoming students very much feel the same way and are counting on us to assist and welcome them as they begin their Murray State experience.

Again, we have started the beginning phases to end this pandemic and I am very positive regarding the months ahead. As I have stated many times, our best days are ahead of us.

Finally, thank you for all that you do to truly make Murray State University the finest place we know.

We are forward-moving. We are family. We are Racers.

Bob

February 8, 2021

February 8, 2021

Faculty, Staff and Students:

A sincere thank you to each of you for getting the Spring 2021 Semester rolling. Everyone’s individual and collective efforts have been and continue to be needed for success and these efforts are greatly appreciated.  

Thank you, too, for your continued focus on the 12 Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines (listed below). Adhering to these guidelines and making good choices, listed as #12, will enable all of us to get through the pandemic and achieve more normalcy as the next few weeks and months evolve.

While 2020 is now behind us, we are all still challenged in the early part of 2021; however, our world and specifically our region, state, community and University are beginning to see positive movement in conquering the challenge. As we have begun the Spring 2021 Semester in earnest, it is refreshing to see some elements of “normalcy” begin to emerge with student organizations on the Quad, along with future Racers and their families touring our beautiful campus as part of their visit.

Everyone, please continue to take care of yourselves and each other. We are getting through this.

Tim Todd
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines

  1. Regularly wash hands for at least 20 seconds and use hand sanitizer frequently.
  2. Check your temperature daily.
  3. If you feel sick, stay home.
  4. Wear a face mask/face covering.
  5. Utilize MSU Health Services (call, visit or tele-visit).
  6. Practice social distancing.
  7. Keep your workstation/room sanitized.
  8. Get a flu shot.
  9. Exhibit healthy behavior.
  10. Download the Apple COVID-19 app for daily use.
  11. Eat Well. Exercise. Get Plenty of Rest.
  12. Make good choices.

February 1, 2021

February 1, 2021

Students:

I hope the start of the Spring Semester is going well for each of you. As you may know, there are many individuals across campus who are here to help you. Please don’t be afraid to ask questions and ask for help if needed. The Racer Family is a special one – we are all here for you so that we can have a successful semester. Please see below important updates and resources:

On-Campus Employment. Murray State University Career Services is excited to announce that student work positions are now listed in Murray State’s Handshake system. Handshake is an online career management platform with job postings (full-time, part-time, internships, student work opportunities), career-related events, virtual career fairs and much more.

Logging in is easy – if you can log into myGate, you can log into Handshake. Contact Murray State University Career Services with any questions at msu.careerservices@murraystate.edu or by calling 270-809-3735.

University Counseling Services. Murray State has two centers on campus that offer free and confidential mental health services for students. The University Counseling Center is located in the Oakley Applied Science building and is offering primarily remote services this spring. Call 270-809-6851, email msu.counselingcenter@murraystate.edu or visit their website. The Psychological Center, located in 401 Wells Hall, is offering primarily in-person sessions this spring. You can reach the Psychological Center at 270-809-2504 or visit their website.

In a crisis situation, or after hours, please contact Murray State Police at 270-809-2222 or call 911 if you are off campus. You can also call the 24-hour crisis hotline at 800-592-3980 or contact the Crisis Text Line at 741-741.

Finally, if you have any questions, or are not sure where to go, please contact the Office of Student Affairs. We are located in 425 Wells Hall and are available at 270-809-6831 or msu.studentaffairs@murraystate.edu.

COVID-19 Testing. If you have any potential COVID-19 symptoms, the University now has rapid tests for symptomatic patients – students, faculty and staff – at Murray State Health Services (located on the first floor of Wells Hall). The rapid tests provide results in approximately 15 minutes (the test is free). If you have any symptoms you are encouraged to take advantage of these rapid tests in order to keep our campus safe and healthy. Helpful contact numbers are provided below:

  • Murray State Health Services: 270-809-3809
  • Village Medical/Primary Care Medical Center: 270-759-9200

When making an appointment, please let them know that you are a student, faculty or staff member and bring your MSU Identification Card (Racer ID Card) with you for verification purposes.

Aside from COVID-19 testing, Murray State Health Services provides many important resources and quality care in a convenient, on-campus presence with physicians, nurses and medical staff available when you are not feeling well, including after-hours access.

Student Group Recognition. We are recognizing at least one student group each week for supporting the Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines and working hard to keep our campus safe and healthy. Congratulations to Zachary Smith, Resident Director at Elizabeth Residential College and the Elizabeth Residential College Resident Advisors as our first group to be recognized! They are setting a great example for following the Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.

Students, advisors, faculty and staff can nominate a student group at msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu

Be sure to visit murraystate.edu/racerrestart for Racer Safe and Healthy updates, resources and tips.

Let’s make good choices for our Racer family and broader community in order to have a successful 2021 Spring Semester. This will require the commitment of each of us, whether we live on campus or off campus, both during the day and in the evening and on weekdays and weekends.

Go Racers!

Sincerely,

Dr. Don Robertson
Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management

January 19, 2021

January 19, 2021

Students, Faculty and Staff – An important update.  Starting today – January 19, 2021 – MSU Health Services, 1st floor of Wells Hall facing the Quad, will be the location for COVID-19 rapid tests.  Please see further instructions below.

These rapid tests which provide results in approximately 15 minutes are for any student, faculty or staff member with symptoms, any possible symptoms, at no cost, as long as our supply of rapid tests are available which we anticipate will be through March 31, 2021.  If you test positive and need to see a healthcare provider or require other care, you will need to use your medical insurance. 

Again, COVID-19 rapid testing is at no cost, including any related administrative charges for the tests which will be paid by the University as long as we have rapid tests available, again, which I anticipate will be through March 31, 2021.

We encourage you to take advantage of these tests in order to keep our campus community safe and healthy and as we prepare for campus vaccinations.

  1. Free COVID-19 Rapid Tests for symptomatic patients are available ONLY at MSU Student Health Services (1st floor of Wells Hall facing the Quad) for any faculty, staff or student with possible symptoms.  These tests cannot be used on asymptomatic patients or those who may have been exposed and have no symptoms.

Symptoms may include:

  •  Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • This list does not include all possible symptoms.  The Centers for Disease Control will continue to update this list as more is learned about COVID-19.
  1. To obtain a rapid test, you must make an appointment by calling 270.809.3809 or by emailing msu.healthservices@murraystate.edu.  
  2. When making an appointment, please let them know you are a student or a faculty or staff member at MSU and need a Free Rapid Test. 
  3. MSU Health Services is open Monday-Friday,1 p.m. – 4 p.m. for testing.
  4. There is no cost associated for either the test or visit for faculty, staff and students.
  5. Please take your valid MSU ID with you for your rapid test appointment.

Thanks, Bob

January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Students – Welcome back!  We are ready for a good Spring Semester.

Following is an update on a few items as we begin the Spring 2021 Semester.  Also, there is a special message at the end of this email.

  1. Campus Operations.  The first part of this semester will operate much like, if not identical to, the Fall 2020 Semester.  We will be positive, flexible and, as in the Fall Semester, we will operate in a safe and healthy manner.  Until we are able to vaccinate our campus community, all standard health and safety protocols will remain in effect, including the requirement of masks/face coverings.

Please remember to complete the mandatory Racer Safe and Healthy Checklist via your myGate account before you arrive on campus.  All students taking classes on campus or living in the residence halls must complete the Checklist on the first day of each month during the 2021 Spring Semester.

Also, please continue to follow all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines as we keep our campus safe and healthy and see the Racer Restart Plan for all questions/details.

  1. COVID-19 Testing.  Today, this week, before classes begin, or anytime during the Spring Semester (stress, at any time), if you have any potential COVID-19 symptoms, the University now has rapid tests which provide results in approximately 15 minutes (test kit is free) for symptomatic patients at MSU Health Services or Village Medical/Primary Care Medical Center on South 12th Street, Murray, Kentucky.  (Please take advantage of these rapid tests available to students, faculty and staff if you have any symptoms in order to keep our campus safe and healthy.)
    MSU Health Services:  270.809.3809 (Opening on January 19, 2021).
    Village Medical/Primary Care Medical Center:  270-759-9200
    When making an appointment, please let them know that you are a student and please take your MSU Identification Card (Racer ID Card) with you for verification purposes.
  1. COVID-19 Vaccination Plans.  We are in daily contact with our local and state public health officials regarding our vaccination plan.  Faculty and staff are in Group 1C.  We are working on a daily basis to determine the timing of vaccinations for our campus community and will keep you posted.
  1. Counseling Services.  We fully understand the pressures and difficulties caused by this pandemic.  Please take advantage of available counseling services – for students, faculty and staff.  You can find information here and seek these services on a confidential basis:  University Counseling Services

Murray State University has two centers on campus that offer free and confidential mental health services for students. The University Counseling Center is located in Oakley Applied Science and will be offering primarily remote services this spring.  You can call them at 270.809.6851, email them at msu.counselingcenter@murraystate.edu or visit their website.  The Psychological Center located in Wells Hall will be offering primarily in-person sessions this spring.  You can reach the Psychological Center at 270.809.2504 or visit their website.

In a crisis situation, or after hours, please contact Murray State Police at 270.809.2222 or call 911 if you are off campus.  You can also call the 24-hour crisis hotline at 800-592-3980 or contact the Crisis Text Line at 741-741.

  1. Academic Tutoring Services.  We encourage everyone to seek academic tutoring as needed.  Most of our tutoring services are free and you can find the information here:  Tutoring Center.
  1. Special Assistance. Students requiring special assistance due to a disability should visit the Office of Student Disability Services immediately for assistance with accommodations.  For more information, students with disabilities should contact the Office of Student Disability Services located at 423 Wells Hall, Murray, KY 42071, by phone at 270.809.2018 (Voice), 270.809.5889 (TDD) or msu.studentdisabilities@murraystate.edu.
  1. .Other Services and Information for Students.  Please find additional important information and resources by visiting Racer Success and Other Student Information.  Information on available ZOOM spaces on campus can also be found here:  Academic Information for Students.

During the coming weeks, be patient and supportive.  We will have a good semester and continue our work to keep our campus community safe and healthy.  You will be informed of all necessary information as soon as we have it.  We have started the beginning of the end to this pandemic.  However, we still have many weeks to go.  Again, if you have any symptoms, please make an appointment at MSU Health Services or at Village Medical/Primary Care Medical Center at the numbers provided above.  Our number one priority is the health, safety and well-being of our entire campus community. 

Students – lastly, we will recognize at least ONE student group EACH WEEK beginning on Friday January 22, 2021, for supporting the Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines and working to keep our campus safe and healthy.  Let's all do our part.  There will be special prizes and recognition for each student in the group(s)!  Students, advisors, faculty and staff can nominate a student group to msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.  Let's make this semester special as we begin the end of this pandemic.

If you have any questions regarding information in this message, please direct them to msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

Thank you.

January 4, 2021

January 4, 2021

Faculty, Staff and Students – Happy New Year!  I know we are all ready to have 2020 in our rearview mirror.

Following is an update on a few items as we begin the Spring 2021 Semester.  Also, there is a special message to students at the end of this message.

  1. Campus Operations.  The first part of this semester will operate much like, if not identical to, the Fall 2020 Semester.  We will be positive, flexible and as in the Fall Semester, we will operate in a safe and healthy manner.  Until we get our campus community vaccinated, all standard health and safety protocols will remain in effect, including the requirement of masks/face coverings. 

Please continue to follow all Racer Safe & Healthy Guidelines  as we keep our campus safe and healthy and see the Racer Restart Plan for all questions/details.

Also, all campus buildings will be open as normal starting today.  Unless otherwise posted, all facilities will run on a normal schedule, including deep-cleaning protocols each day performed by SSC.

Additionally, all faculty and staff will operate as directed by your immediate supervisor, Vice President and Chair/Dean/Provost.  Again, the first part of Spring 2021 will operate much like, if not identical to, Fall 2020.

  1. Student Move-in.  Students will begin moving back on campus on Friday, January 15 through Sunday, January 17, 2021.  All students will be notified by separate email regarding the scheduling of check-in times and protocols.
  1. COVID-19 Testing.  Today, this week, before classes begin, or anytime during the Spring Semester (stress, at any time), if you have any potential COVID-19 symptoms; the University now has rapid tests which provide results in 15-20 minutes (actual test kit is at no cost) for symptomatic patients at MSU Health Services or Village Medical/Primary Care Medical Center on south 12th Street, Murray, Kentucky.  Please take advantage of these rapid tests if you have any symptoms in order to keep our campus safe and healthy.

MSU Health Services:  270.809.3809 (Opening on January 19, 2021).

Village Medical/Primary Care Medical Center:  270-759-9200

When making an appointment, please let them know that you are an MSU employee or student and please take your MSU Identification Card (Racer ID Card) with you for verification purposes.

  1. COVID-19 Vaccination Plans.  We are in daily contact with our local and state public health officials regarding our faculty and staff vaccination plan.  It appears at this time, and this is very premature, that we could provide vaccinations to faculty and staff by the end of January or the first week of February.  This information changes daily and we could have a vaccination plan earlier or later than expected – we will keep you posted.

Also, faculty and staff, thank you for completing the COVID-19 survey regarding the vaccination.  We had over 800 individuals express interest.  This vaccine is approximately 95 percent effective based on all available information and is the best tool available to eradicate COVID-19 in the weeks to come. 

Faculty and Staff – Scheduling for a vaccination will be available to all faculty and staff, based on quantities of the vaccine initially received.  The scheduling process will be initiated by Human Resources once the University learns of definite details on availability dates.   

Students – we will notify you when it is time to complete a survey of your interest regarding a vaccine.

During the coming weeks, be patient and supportive.  We will have a good semester and continue our work to keep our campus community safe and healthy.  You will be informed of all necessary information as soon as we have it.  We have started the beginning of the end to this pandemic.  However, we still have many weeks to go.  Again, if you have any symptoms, please make an appointment at MSU Health Services or at Village Medical/Primary Care Medical Center at the numbers provided above.  Our number one priority is the health, safety and well-being of our entire campus community. 

Students – lastly, we will recognize at least ONE student group EACH WEEK beginning on Friday January 22, 2021, for supporting the Racer Safe & Healthy Guidelines and working to keep our campus safe and healthy.  Let's all do our part.  There will be special prizes and recognition for each student in the group(s)!  Students, advisors, faculty and staff can nominate a student group to msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.  Let's make this semester special as we begin the end of this pandemic.

If you have any questions regarding information in this message, please direct them to msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

Thanks,
Bob

Ocotber 28, 2020

October 28, 2020

Students, Faculty and Staff:

Good afternoon everyone.  As we approach the final three weeks of this semester, I wanted to provide this reminder as we keep our campus community safe and healthy.

As you know, cases are rising throughout the world, the United States and across Kentucky, with Calloway County and many other counties throughout the state being classified as “red zone” and “orange zone,” regarding case levels.  Murray State University is following all up-to-date guidance for colleges and universities, as provided by the Commonwealth and our local and state health officials as we work toward November 20.  The health, safety and well-being of our students, faculty, staff and broader community is paramount in every decision.

  1. Wear your mask – on-campus, off-campus, in classrooms and in all social settings.
  2. Practice social distancing, indoors and outdoors; if you feel sick, stay home and make good choices along with following all other Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.
  3. Review MSU Testing, Quarantine Policy and Contact Tracing Information
  4. Get a flu shot.

    You can go to MSU Health Services, Primary Care Medical Center or to your local healthcare provider.  Individuals with questions are encouraged to contact MSU Health Services at 270.809.3809 or msu.healthservices@murraystate.edu or Primary Care Medical Center at 270.759.9200.

  5. Students, Faculty and Staff Counseling Services.

    The Murray State Counseling Center provides tele-counseling services for students via ZOOM, as well as limited in-person services.  On-call counselors are available 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday for crisis sessions.

    To schedule an appointment, please email msu.counselingcenter@murraystate.edu.  In addition, contact information and other resources are listed on their website.

    The Psychological Center also provides in-person counseling sessions, as well as walk-in crisis sessions for students.  Please call 270.809.2504 for additional information or visit them in 401 Wells Hall.

    Counseling Services are available for faculty and staff through the University's Employee Assistance Program (EAP) at 800.441.1327 or waynecorp.com.  This is a voluntary confidential program available at no cost.

  6. Review academic success and other resources.
  7. If you have questions, please refer to our Racer Restart Plan and Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines and to report non-compliance.
  8. Our virtual/hybrid Commencement ceremony for spring, summer and fall 2020 graduates can be found here:  2020 Commencement.
  9. Lastly, Happy Homecoming!  Please participate in and enjoy our virtual Homecoming activities.

As we work toward November 20, thank you for all that you are doing to keep our campus community safe and healthy.  We can do this...We are Racers!

Sincerely,

Bob Jackson, President

October 23, 2020

October 23, 2020

Good morning, Racers!

We are the Racer Safe and Healthy Ambassadors.  You may have seen us around campus in our bright blue polo shirts, or at some popular events on campus.  Our goal is to keep everyone – students, faculty, staff and visitors – both safe and healthy.  In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, we want you to know that following the 12 Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines is so crucial to being able to remain on campus and complete this semester.  The last day of the semester is November 20, 2020, and we are only a month away from that date!

We want to invite you to take this short 5-question quiz and, if you answer all five questions correctly, you will be entered into a drawing to win Racer Swag!

We also want to remind you that it’s important to be healthy both on and off campus.  Being off campus doesn’t eliminate the risk of Covid-19, so be sure to follow the Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines at all times – no matter where you are!  We appreciate your hard work in staying safe so far this semester and encourage you to keep it up!

Sincerely,

Mariah Lyons, Devon Hart, Anna Ledonne, Emily Robinson, Danielle McDaniel, Rachel Stuckey, Drew Jackson, Liam Coursey, Abdullah Alhazmi

October 19, 2020

October 19, 2020

Students – good morning.  As we begin a new week, let's ensure we adhere to all Racer Safe and Healthy guidelines.  Please watch this brief video as a reminder as we work to protect our campus community. 

Racer Safe and Healthy

Your health, safety and well-being is paramount in all of our decisions as we complete this semester.

Let's have a good week.  We can do this...We are Racers!

Bob

October 16, 2020

October 16, 2020

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:

We want to thank you for all you are doing to help make the 2020 Fall Semester the best it can be under this pandemic.  While certainly not a traditional semester, it is significant to note that we are approaching two-thirds of the way to the finish line.  The resilience you are all showing is very much appreciated.  We have made it this far together and in partnership with many others in our city, region and the Commonwealth.  Thank you.

At this point in our semester, it is certainly clear that many are suffering from pandemic fatigue.  It is now very timely for all of us to remember the following:

  • Adhere to the 12 Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.
  • Follow the Executive Order issued by Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear limiting social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals.
  • Masks continue to be required on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines.
  • Practice social distancing, along with the other Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.
  • Get your flu shot.
  • Remember, if you are not feeling well, please stay in your room, apartment or home and if needed, call MSU Health Services at 270.809.3809, Primary Care Medical Center at 270.759.9200 or contact your personal healthcare provider.
  • Avoid close contact with others which is being within six feet proximity of another for 15 minutes or longer, whether inside or outside, masked or not.
  • And, try to say to another “Thank You” at least once a day.  These small, positive gestures mean a lot to people, especially during stressful times.

We are extremely proud of everyone practicing good behaviors and choices.  Let’s continue to do this to successfully complete the 2020 Fall Semester on November 20.

With sincere thanks for all you are doing…We are family.  We are Racers. 

  • Bob Jackson – President
  • Jackie Dudley – Vice President for Finance and Administrative Services
  • Don Robertson – Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management
  • Tim Todd – Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

October 12, 2020

October 12, 2020

Students:

As we begin a new week, let’s each do our part to make good choices, adhere to the 12 Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines and, importantly, following the Executive Order issued by Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear limiting of social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals, which includes backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties.

  • Masks are required on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines.
  • Practice social distancing along with the other Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.   
  • Remember, if you are not feeling well, please stay in your room, apartment or home and if needed, call MSU Health Services at 270.809.3809, Primary Care Medical Center at 270.759.9200 or contact your personal healthcare provider.

To report any issues of non-compliance regarding our Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-university events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

Please note, per our Student Life Handbook and Student Life policies, the University will take disciplinary action – up to and including – suspension of any student in violation of health and safety guidelines.  

“In these crazy times it’s important to remember that we are all Racers, all the time! Stay safe, and be smart at all times. Dunker is depending on us!” – Liam C., student

Let’s each do our part this week to continue to successfully complete the 2020 Fall Semester on November 20.

We are family. We are Racers.

October 9, 2020

October 9, 2020

Students:

Ahead of this weekend, let’s make good choices for our Racer family and broader community.  Each of us – on campus and off campus – during the day and in the evening – on weekdays and weekends.

This includes following the 12 Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines and, importantly, following the Executive Order issued by Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear limiting of social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals.  This includes backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties.

Continued adherence in the weeks ahead is vitally important in order to complete the 2020 Fall Semester.

To report concerns of individual and group non-compliance regarding the Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-University events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu and it will be promptly reviewed with action taken.

“We have to remember that the COVID-19 risk doesn’t disappear when we leave campus.  It’s very possible that you could carry it back when you travel, or even just from the grocery store.  Everyone needs to do their part to keep each other safe and healthy both on campus and off, so we can continue to keep our campus open!” – Anna L., student

We are family. We are Racers.

Thank you.
Campus News

October 5, 2020

October 5, 2020

Students – good morning.  Today, we start week eight of the semester.  It is imperative that we have a better week by wearing masks and adhering to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, including making good choices.

Masks are required on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines.  We have learned in the past few days that no one is immune from COVID-19.

Please watch this short video.

As we begin a new week, I want to thank those who are adhering to the Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines and encourage others to consider your choices as we protect our campus community. 

Remember:

  • Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has issued an Executive Order to limit social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals.  Note:  Ten or fewer.   This Order prohibits any type of social gatherings such as backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties.  This Order does not include approved University-sponsored events which adhere to our Racer Restart Plan.
  • Practice social distancing along with the other Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.    
  • Remember, if you are not feeling well, please stay in your room, apartment or home and if needed, call MSU Health Services at 270.809.3809, Primary Care Medical Center at 270.759.9200 or contact your personal healthcare provider.

 Please go to murraystate.edu/racerrestart for more information, videos, Q&A, among other guidelines.  This site also includes information regarding MSU Health Services and Counseling.

To report any issues of non-compliance regarding our Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-university events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

 Please note, per our Student Life Handbook and Student Life policies, the University will take disciplinary action – up to and including – suspension of any student in violation of health and safety guidelines.    

Your agreement to adhere to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines is not just for yourself, but also for the health and safety of others.  

Thank you.

Dr. Robert L (Bob) Jackson
President

October 5, 2020

Students:

With flu season fast approaching, we are encouraging all students to receive a flu vaccine. Murray State University is offering two student flu shot clinics as follows:

  • Wednesday, October 14, 2020, from 9 a.m. – 12 noon (drive-up clinic)
    The drive-up clinic will take place between the CFSB Center and Wellness Center (enter off KY Highway 121)
  • Thursday, October 15, 2020, from 2 – 5 p.m. (walk-up clinic)
    Hart Residence Hall Lawn (Winslow Dining Hall side)

Proof of insurance is required and students should fill out and bring a completed insurance form.  A self-pay option (no insurance) is available for $40, payable by cash, check or credit card.

A third option for a flu vaccine is Murray State Health Services.  Operating hours are Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. (closed for lunch from 1 – 2 p.m.) and from 2 – 4 p.m.

Finally, it is imperative that each of us continue to make good decisions, both on and off campus, in order to successfully complete the 2020 Fall Semester.  Each day, let us do our best – for each of us and for each other.

Be sure to visit murraystate.edu/racerrestart for Racer Safe and Healthy updates, resources and tips.

Sincerely,

Dr. Don Robertson
Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management

October 2, 2020

October 2, 2020

Students – good morning.  Today, we are completing week seven of the semester.  As we approach the weekend, let's make good choices for the health, safety and well-being of our campus community.  Especially, let's make good choices regarding off-campus events. 

Please remember:

  • Wear a mask – it is required on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines.  
  • Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has issued an Executive Order to limit social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals.  Note:  Ten or fewer.   This Order prohibits any type of social gatherings such as backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties.  This Order does not include approved University-sponsored events which adhere to our Racer Restart Plan.
  • Practice social distancing along with the other Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.    
  • Remember, if you are not feeling well, please stay in your room, apartment or home and if needed, call MSU Health Services at 270.809.3809, Primary Care Medical Center at 270.759.9200 or contact your personal healthcare provider.

Please go to murraystate.edu/racerrestart for more information, videos, Q&A, among other guidelines.  This site also includes information regarding MSU Health Services and Counseling.

To report any issues of non-compliance regarding our Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-university events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

Please note, per our Student Life Handbook and Student Life policies, the University will take disciplinary action – up to and including – suspension of any student in violation of health and safety guidelines.   

Your agreement to adhere to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines is not just for yourself, but also for the health and safety of others. 

Let's get to November 20, 2020.  We can do this!

Sincerely,
Dr. Robert L (Bob) Jackson
President

September 28, 2020

September 28, 2020

Students – Regarding the adherence to Racer Safe and Healthy guidance and our Racer Restart Plan, we must do better this week.

  1. As stated by healthcare professionals, wearing a mask, properly over your mouth and nose, coupled with other safe and healthy guidelines, is the best tool to control the spread of COVID-19.  Masks are required – on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines.  
    Please watch our short video outlining the importance of wearing a mask, coupled with other Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.
  2. Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has issued an Executive Order to limit social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals.  Note: Ten or fewer.
    This Order prohibits any type of social gatherings such as backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties.  This Order does not include University-sponsored events which adhere to our Racer Restart Plan.
  3. If you have not already done so, please review the Racer Restart website, watch the short videos, find information regarding counseling and other healthcare services and review the Q&A.
  4. To report any issues of non-compliance regarding our Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-University events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.
  5.  Make good choices – on campus and, especially, off campus.

 These items, along with other guidelines, will help us complete the Fall 2020 Semester.  These are small sacrifices in protecting our campus community.  It will take everyone working together – students, faculty and staff, to have a good, safe and healthy semester.

We can do this...We are Racers!

Sincerely,

Dr. Robert L (Bob) Jackson
President

September 25, 2020

September 25, 2020

Students – good morning. Today, we are completing week six of the semester. As we approach the weekend, let's make good choices in order to begin a safe and healthy week seven on Monday.

Please remember:

  • Wear a mask – it is required on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines.
  • Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has issued an Executive Order to limit social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals. Note: Ten or fewer.

This Order prohibits any type of social gatherings such as backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties. This Order does not include approved University-sponsored events which adhere to our Racer Restart Plan.

If you have been exposed to COVID-19 or are not feeling well, please call MSU Health Services at 270.809.3809, Primary Care Medical Center at 270.759.9200 or contact your personal healthcare provider.

Please go to murraystate.edu/racerrestart for more information, videos, Q&A, among other guidelines. This site also includes information regarding Counseling Services.

To report any issues of non-compliance regarding our Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-university events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

Again, let's make good choices this weekend.

Your agreement to adhere to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines is not just for yourself, but also for the health and safety of others.

Sincerely,

Dr. Robert L (Bob) Jackson
President

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

Students – good morning. As we work toward November 20, 2020, let's have a good week and adhere to guidelines as we work to keep our campus safe and healthy. Please remember:

  • Wear a mask – it is required on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines. Please watch this short video.
  • Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has issued an Executive Order to limit social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals. Note:Ten or fewer.

This Order prohibits any type of social gatherings such as backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties. This Order does not include approved University-sponsored events which adhere to our Racer Restart Plan.

If you have been exposed to COVID-19 or are not feeling well, please call MSU Health Services at 270.809.3809, Primary Care Medical Center at 270.759.9200 or contact your personal healthcare provider.

Please go to murraystate.edu/racerrestart for more information, videos, Q&A, among other guidelines. This site also includes information regarding Counseling Services.

To report any issues of non-compliance regarding our Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-university events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

Finally, let's make good choices this week and beyond. We want to have a good, safe and healthy semester.

Your agreement to adhere to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines is not just for yourself, but also for the health and safety of others.

Sincerely,
Dr. Robert L (Bob) Jackson

September 14, 2020

September 14, 2020

Students – good morning. Last week was a good week, adherence to guidelines was much better as we work to keep our campus safe and healthy – thank you. Let's do it again this week!

Please remember:

  1. Wear your mask – it is required on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines.
  2. Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has issued an Executive Order to limit social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals. Note: Ten or fewer.
    This Order prohibits any type of social gatherings such as backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties. This Order does not include approved University-sponsored events which adhere to our Racer Restart Plan.
  3. If you have been exposed to COVID-19 or are not feeling well, please call MSU Health Services at 270.809.3809, Primary Care Medical Center at 270.759.9200 or contact your personal healthcare provider.
  4. Please watch this short video regarding our Racer Safe and Healthy guidelines: RacerSafe&HealthyGuidelinesVideo or go to murraystate.edu/racerrestart for more information, videos, Q&A, among other guidelines.
  5. Please see information regarding Counseling Services and other important information at Racer Restart:  https://www.murraystate.edu/racerrestart/.
  6. To report any issues of non-compliance regarding our Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-university events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.
  7. Finally, let's make good choices this week and beyond. We want to have a good, safe and healthy semester.We all want to be on campus for the full semester which ends on November 20.

To do this, it requires your help and compliance by adhering to all guidelines and making good choices. 

Your agreement to adhere to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines is not just for yourself, but also for the health and safety of others.

Sincerely,
Dr. Robert L (Bob) Jackson

September 8, 2020

September 8, 2020

Students – Regarding the adherence to Racer Safe and Healthy guidance and our Racer Restart Plan, we must do better this week.

We continue to get regular reports of non-compliance and poor decisions among certain individuals and groups.Importantly, some individuals and groups are currently facing disciplinary actions.  It takes our entire campus community, especially our students, to keep our campus safe and healthy.

As a reminder, per our Student Life Handbook and Student Life policies, the University will take disciplinary action – up to and including – suspension of any student in violation of health and safety guidelines.

  1. To report any issues of non-compliance regarding our Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-university events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.
  1. Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has issued an Executive Order to limit social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals.  Note: Ten or fewer.

This Order prohibits any type of social gatherings such as backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties.  This Order does not include approved University-sponsored events which adhere to our Racer Restart Plan. 

  1. Wear your mask – it is required on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines.
  1. If you have been exposed to COVID-19 or are not feeling well, please call MSU Health Services at 270.809.3809, Primary Care Medical Center at 270.759.9200 or contact your personal healthcare provider.  Also, please see information regarding Counseling Services and other important information at Racer Restart:  Murraystate.edu/racerrestart.

Please watch this short video regarding our Racer Safe and Healthy guidelines: https://youtu.be/grIZWSlc_sU

Let's make good choices this week and beyond.  We want to have a good, safe and healthy semester.We all want to be on campus for the full semester which ends on November 20.

To do this, it requires your help and compliance by adhering to all guidelines and making good choices.

Your agreement to adhere to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines is not just for yourself but also for the health and safety of others.

Sincerely,

Dr. Robert L (Bob) Jackson

September 3, 2020

September 3, 2020 

Students – good morning.  We have nearly completed Week Three of this semester.  Thank you for your adherence to Racer Safe and Healthy guidelines and, most importantly, wearing a mask.  Please watch this short video from Dr. Steven Stack on why it is important to wear a mask and over this long weekend, wear a mask, practice social-distancing, make good choices and continue adhering to our Racer Safe and Healthy guidelines.

These simple acts will help us have a good, safe and healthy semester for our students, faculty and staff.

To report any non-compliance to the Racer Safe and Healthy guidelines, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

Thanks again, 

Dr. Robert L (Bob) Jackson
President
Murray State University

August 31, 2020

August 31, 2020

Good morning.  As we start week three of classes, let's continue to focus on the Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.

  1. Masks are required on campus, including outdoors, in classrooms and off campus.  Please wear your masks correctly, completely covering your mouth and nose.
  2. Practice social-distancing.
  3. Make good choices – on campus and, especially, off campus.
  4. Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has issued an Executive Order to limit social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individualsThis Order prohibits any type of social gatherings such as backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties.  This Order does not include University-sponsored events which adhere to our Racer Restart Plan.
  5. To report any issues of non-compliance regarding our Racer Restart Plan, Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, concerns or violations of non-University events and activities, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

These items, along with other guidelines, will help us complete the Fall 2020 Semester.  These are small sacrifices in protecting our campus community.  Watch the Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines video.

Review the Racer Restart Plan.

It will take everyone working together, students, faculty and staff, to have a good, safe and healthy semester. 

We can do this...We are Racers!

Dr. Robert L (Bob) Jackson
President
Murray State University

August 24, 2020

August 24, 2020

Dear Students:

A few reminders for this week as we ALL work to have the best University experience possible this fall.  It will take our entire campus community, working together and adhering to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, on and off campus, to have a successful, safe and healthy fall.  In furtherance of these efforts, please carefully review the following information as to how you can do your part to make the Fall 2020 Semester successful.

  1. If you have not already done so, please review the Racer Restart website – watch the short video and review the Q&A.
  2. As stated by healthcare professionals, wearing a mask, properly over your mouth and nose, coupled with other safe and healthy guidelines, is the best tool to control the spread of COVID-19.  Masks are required at Murray State University.  Wear your mask – it is required on campus, in classrooms, when walking outside on MSU property, off campus and at all times when required per our guidelines.  Please watch our short video outlining the importance of wearing a mask, coupled with other Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.
  3. Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has issued an Executive Order to limit social events and gatherings to ten (10) or fewer individuals.  This Order prohibits any type of social gatherings such as backyard events, room/apartment/house and block parties.  This Order does not include University-sponsored events which adhere to our Racer Restart Plan.  So, let's make good choices this week and beyond.  Gathering in large social events and house parties and not adhering to Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines will potentially cause COVID-19 outbreaks which other universities have recently experienced. 

We want to have a good, safe and healthy semester.  We all want to be on campus for the full semester which ends on November 20.  To do this, it requires your help and compliance by adhering to all guidelines and making good choices.  Your agreement to adhere to all Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines is not just for yourself but also for the health and safety of others.

Importantly, and please note, per our Student Life Handbook and Student Life policies, the University will take disciplinary action – up to and including – suspension of any student in violation of health and safety guidelines.

We can do this – let's work hard this week to follow all guidance in order to promote the health, safety and well-being of our campus community.  Go Racers!

Dr. Bob Jackson, President

August 19, 2020 (p.m.)

August 19, 2020

Faculty, Staff and Students:

Good afternoon.  First, thank you to everyone who helped with an excellent move-in process for our students and for a good start to a difficult semester.  As you have read, I sent another email message to students today.  I will be doing this regularly in order to reinforce our Racer Restart Guidelines and safe and healthy guidance.  It is important that we ALL adhere to these guidelines and set good examples for the health and safety of our campus community.

Nothing about this semester will be easy.  Many of us have been working near 24/7 since February.  It will take all of us, working together, to have a good, safe and healthy semester.  We have started off very well, but we have a long road ahead.

Importantly, I am grateful to the approximately 200 faculty, staff, students, administrators and healthcare professionals who assisted in the development of the Racer Restart Plan.  And, I am very proud of our work to date.  My job, along with all faculty, staff and administrators, is to work toward a good, safe and healthy semester.  In addition, we have many other challenges facing us, coupled with health and safety matters due to COVID-19; including significant COVID-19 expenses, state appropriations pressures, performance funding, pension costs, lack of an additional federal stimulus package at this time for colleges and universities and others which you hear me talk about often.  Last week, I discussed these and many other items at our Faculty Summit and Campus Town Hall meeting.

Lastly, the Calloway County Health Department (CCHD) reports daily COVID-19 cases in Calloway County which includes cases at Murray State University (MSU).  We are in daily communication with the local health department which handles case reporting, contact tracing, among many other public health requirements due to COVID-19.  This afternoon, the Calloway County Health Department reported the following information:

"Our case count is at 303 (cumulative since inception) with 260 recovered, 35 isolated at home, 2 hospitalized, and 6 deaths."

Late yesterday, Dr. Steven Stack, our state's Chief Public Health Officer, announced he would be reporting K-12 schools positive cases.  I talk with Dr. Stack, along with my other university colleagues, on a regular basis.  Due to this change in guidance, we will be reporting positive case information on a weekly basis.  At the same time, we will continue to protect individual health information privacy and concerns of our students, faculty and staff.  As of today, the Calloway County Health Department reported to us that since August 1, 2020, we have had 14 positive student cases and four (4) positive faculty/staff cases.

The Calloway County Health Department asked us this morning to convey to you that, if you have questions, please give them a call at 270.753.3381

August 19, 2020 (a.m.)

August 19, 2020

Students – good morning.  Thank you for a good move-in process this past week and weekend and for starting off the Fall 2020 Semester very well.

I have had the opportunity to visit with many of you and your families during move-in or on campus during the past few days.  Thank you for wearing a mask/face covering.  Please continue to do so and ensure that your friends and classmates wear one too.  A mask/face covering is one of our best protections against COVID-19. 
There are several other components to keep Murray State University safe and healthy, including social-distancing, a daily temperature check, washing your hands and using hand sanitizer frequently and making good decisions, among others.  Please watch the short video which outlines our 12 Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.

Finally, an important reminder regarding making good choices.  Kentucky's Governor, Andy Beshear, has issued an Executive Order regarding non-university sponsored social gatherings, including off-campus gatherings, parties and events, with a limit of ten or less.  Please adhere to this Executive Order.

This guidance is vitally important, along with our Racer Restart initiatives.  We need your help.  Use good judgement.  Make good choices.  Bad decisions can have far-reaching effects.  Based on a few reports, I have concerns with some off-campus, after-hours activities.  Please feel free to report any non-compliance to the University through msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

Importantly, several universities have discontinued or suspended on-campus teaching and learning this week.  Let's do our part to have a good, safe and healthy semester. 

Please review this website regularly as information and guidance changes daily.  Watch the videos on this website and review the Q&A component.

Our goal is to have a good, safe and healthy Fall 2020 Semester for our students, faculty, staff and broader community.

August 17, 2020

August 17, 2020

Dear Students:

Again, I would like to welcome you back to campus.  The faculty, staff and all members of the campus community are excited to meet the challenges of the coming school year with you.  We look forward to having the best University experience possible this fall.  As a Racer, you know that we are working hard to maintain and advance the student-centered experience you expect at Murray State University.  In furtherance of these efforts, please carefully review the following information as to how you can do your part to make the Fall 2020 Semester successful.

We have made many adjustments and plans for this fall.  Based on prior experience this past spring, we also know that alternative plans must be ready until COVID-19 is no longer a local, state, national and global issue.  The University has implemented state and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines related to COVID-19.  The University believes that our Racer Restart Plan will allow us to have as near-normal of an on-campus experience as possible.  Because we cannot predict the direction or duration of the virus, it is possible that the University will be required to provide alternative learning experiences such as hybrid and off-campus experiences and, if required by state or national health policies or other guidance, we may once again provide classes and services remotely.

As you will see from the changes made on campus, Murray State University is deeply committed to doing our part to enhance health and safety measures across campus.  While no university can guarantee an environment free of COVID-19, by following our Racer Restart Plan, Safe and Healthy Guidelines, CDC guidance, among others, we are doing our very best to minimize the spread of this virus.  These measures include your help and personal responsibilities, such as temperature checks, social distancing, wearing masks or other facial coverings, not reporting to class or work if sick, isolating and quarantining when required AND making good decisionsYour agreement to do all of this is not just for yourself but is also for the health and safety of others – and because this is consistent with the spirit of Murray State University.

Finally, and importantly, whatever the shape of the learning environment for fall 2020, tuition and fee rates will be the same.  Importantly, we did not increase tuition for this academic year.  The tuition and fees you provide are in exchange for learning, academic credit and certain non-academic services that will be provided whether on campus, in a hybrid environment or in an entirely remote situation.

As I stated in a previous message to you dated August 12, 2020, we need your help.  Please adhere to our guidance and plans.  Go to murraystate.edu/racerrestart for additional information.  Make good choices and help us to ensure that the Fall 2020 Semester will be the best it can possibly be in this environment. 

Go Racers!

Dr. Bob Jackson, President

August 12, 2020

Students:

Welcome back!  We have missed you.

Importantly, we are embarking on a very unique and challenging semester.  We have made many changes to campus in order to assist you, faculty and staff and, most importantly, to keep everyone safe and healthy.

This message is very important; please read it closely, take it to heart and assist us in ensuring you, your friends and classmates adhere to this fall’s Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines.  Be a good example and make wise choices.  Following these guidelines is vitally important to ensure we have as near-normal of a semester as possible.  For nearly 100 years, Murray State University has been delivering a nationally-recognized education with caring staff and world-class faculty and we are going to do it again this fall.

But, we need your help.  You can find our Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines and other helpful information at murraystate.edu/racerrestart/guidelines.aspx.  Please review these guidelines closely and comply.  Make good choices this fall.  We want to have a successful Fall 2020 Semester and it will require your help in making this happen.  Visit this website regularly for new and updated information.  Watch videos, such as this video featuring several students and read the FAQ section of the Racer Restart website.

Recently, you should have received an email regarding a mandatory COVID-19 training module through Canvas.  This training takes approximately 15 minutes to complete and is due by August 17.

Regarding “Making good choices;” a few key items, among others, wear a mask/face covering; practice social distancing; regularly wash your hands; take your temperature daily; get tested if needed; if sick, stay home or in your residence hall room and call MSU Health Services/Primary Care Medical Center for an appointment; get a flu shot and adhere to Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear’s guidelines of limiting non-University sponsored social events to ten (10) or less participants.  Meaning – no social events with ten or more participants – unless it is a University-sponsored function which will adhere to all University, state, federal and Centers for Disease Control guidelines.  Part of the University experience is campus activities, social events and interacting with others.  We will do these things but in a safe and healthy manner.  We – and you – do not want any COVID-19 outbreaks this fall which could lead to an adjustment to all online courses like what occurred last spring.  So, please help us.

I know you want as normal of a semester as possible and so do we.  The guidance is simple and easy to understand.  We are counting on you and thank you in advance for your support.

Go Racers!
Dr. Bob Jackson, President

August 5, 2020

Students, Parents and Families:

First, students, we have missed you. We look forward to seeing you in the next few days as you return to campus for the Fall 2020 Semester. You will notice many safety and health changes to campus as we get ready for you, along with other information outlined below.

So, as we finalize our campus plans, I want to ask you to review the Student section of the Racer Restart website, videos that explain the importance of wearing a mask and being a Racer protecting Racers, Questions and Answers, 25-page Racer Restart Plan, our Racer Safe and Healthy Guidelines, among other helpful tips and information.

If you have not already done so, please complete the Racer Safe and Healthy Checklist (available in myGate). If you are a residential student, please complete this form prior to moving into your respective residential college. Residential students must complete the Racer Restart Safe and Healthy Checklist AND the Move-In Housing Application (on your myGate account under the Housing Application link) to reserve your move-in date and time before coming to campus. All other students should complete the Racer Safe and Healthy Checklist prior to attending in-person classes.

Students, please share this information with your parents and families and let us know if you have questions. Be sure to remain in touch with your faculty members and academic advisors; they are committed to assisting you this semester as well as our staff in multiple areas across our University. If you need assistance or have questions about the Racer Safe and Healthy initiative, please email msu.racersafeandhealthy@murraystate.edu.

We look forward to seeing you soon. Go Racers!

Sincerely,

Robert L (Bob) Jackson, Ed.D.
President