Southeast Tech Monitoring Coronavirus

March 11, 2020

Dear Campus Community,

As you may be aware, South Dakota now has five confirmed cases of COVID-19 (coronavirus).  Southeast Tech is closely monitoring the situation and will continue to follow the recommendations put forward by the South Dakota Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control, and the World Health Organization.  

In an effort to fight the spread of the virus, Southeast Tech custodians are increasing cleaning and sanitization efforts in classrooms and main campus facilities, and we have installed additional hand sanitizer dispensing stations across campus.  We have also created a website that will provide updated information related to the virus. The site also contains resources and links for additional coronavirus information. Access the page at www.southeasttech.edu/coronavirus

Other COVID-19-related preparations include:

  • Emails to faculty and staff with information on best practices and steps to take to protect yourself from the COVID-19 virus.
  • The campus Incident Management Team has begun planning contingency operations.
  • We have met with Sioux Falls School District Health and Emergency Planning personnel.
  • We are adding posters across campus on best practices related to staying healthy (handwashing, staying home if sick, etc.)
  • Training resources related to helping/assisting faculty in teaching online are currently being enhanced.
  • Academic Affairs will be working with faculty to provide online resources to assist with moving course instruction online if necessary.  Many trades courses require hands-on lab experience, which may not be able to be duplicated online.
  • Enrollment Management is developing a work contingency plan for their offices if campus activities were to be suspended in order to continue recruiting students.
  • Facilities & operations leadership are in the process of designating various employees as essential personnel.

We anticipate that the COVID-19 virus may also, in the near future, impact large events on campus.  In this regard, we were just notified that the Women In Science organization is canceling the event on campus tomorrow due to the CDC’s recommendation of the coronavirus outbreak.  We will continue to monitor the progression of the virus and its impact on upcoming events and will inform you of any changes to proposed scheduling. 

Practice Daily Preventative Habits

As a reminder, we all play a vital role in maintaining a healthy campus environment regarding COVID-19, the flu, or other health concerns. The best way to prevent illness is to minimize exposure. The CDC recommends the following simple, daily actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases such as COVID-19 and the flu:

  • Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze.
  • Wash hands with soap and warm water or hand sanitizer every time you cough or sneeze.
  • Clean commonly used items, such as phone, keyboards, doorknobs, light switches, etc.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Get your flu shot.