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Fall Semester 2020 Update


As you’ve seen, our COVID-19 numbers continue to climb both state-wide and in Salt Lake County, so stay safe out there and remember to mask up. The State will provide a mask to each resident who needs one and will mail, upon request and free of charge, up to six masks to each Utah mailing address. Need a mask? Click here:

Plans for fall:

While the plans for return to campus remain fluid, please know that the Health Science Campus will most likely be more restrictive than Main Campus given our faculty, staff, and students are more at risk for COVID 19 exposure due to the nature of our work and our interactions with patients/clients in the health care system, many of whom may be infected. We know that some student groups may have an educational need to meet periodically and in person, and accommodations will be made for those groups using the appropriate 6’ physical distancing and the mandatory use of face masks for students, staff, and faculty. Arrangements for these students are already underway. For all other students and groups, our message would be that unless there is an educational imperative to meet in person for didactic content, that should be offered in a distance-accessible format. Of course, the Simulation Center is ready for students this fall and appropriate distance/cleaning procedures will be followed.

Here is the latest from the Health Sciences Deans, and SVPs Michael Good and Dan Reed:  

  1. Graduate student and post-doctoral research and laboratory rotations are governed by the Vice President for Research (VPR)’s color alert levels. 
  2. Graduate health science clinical rotations are governed by the SVP for health science education unit color alert levels.
  3. Students, faculty and staff will be required to wear face coverings on campus. Facial coverings are masks – a face shield does not substitute for a facial covering as droplets and aerosols can still go around the chin.    
  4. We will be ordering safety glasses for all students who are doing clinical experiences  - each student will be issued their own pair for use during the year.
  5. Classes will begin on August 24 – the normal start date. The previously scheduled full break (October 4-11) is canceled to minimize the risk of individuals traveling and possibly becoming infected. Because the Vice Presidential debate will be held on the University of Utah campus during that week (October 7th), all classes will be delivered online – no face to face classes the week of October 4th
  6. All in-person course work should be concluded by Thanksgiving. 
  7. Based on the best advice of University of Utah Health epidemiologists and Salt Lake County and Utah Department of Health experts, we have decided not to return to campus after those dates and to cancel our December convocations.

-Dean Barbara Wilson