South Dakota School of Mines in Rapid City says that until further notice, guests will no longer be authorized on campus.
The ban is the result of an updated COVID-19 policy triggered by an increase in self-reported cases of students needing to isolate and quarantine due to the coronavirus.
Mines Vice President for Student Development and Dean of Students Pat Mahon says a number of COVID-19 cases came from students who were infected but didn’t know it and weren’t showing symptoms when they interacted with guests in private spaces on campus.
Mahon says the new Level Four Policy also bars anyone other than the residents from individual rooms and defines students as residents of their floor or wing but guests anywhere else on campus. Masks are not required within their assigned space
They can visit other “communities” in their building to use kitchens, laundry rooms, and study spaces, and common areas such as the Mines’ Commons remain available to all students.
Mahon says the school will review self-reported cases, monitor trends, and make decisions about the Guest Policy Level as needed, determining each week if the protocols will stay at Level Four or drop to a less restrictive level.