Dear TUJ students:

In our current environment, COVID continues to impact all of us. The virus often spreads without fault. Fortunately, the overwhelming majority of cases are comparatively mild and full recovery is the norm. In the spirit of continuing and complete transparency, we want to provide details about one specific COVID case on campus and the other cases we are tracking.

COVID cases in the TUJ community – Update

We continue to closely monitor the health situation on our campus while closely tracking several COVID cases in our community. Here are the most recent numbers

  • On-campus: We just learned of one student who tested positive. This student was on campus every day this week.  (See below for details.)
  • Off-campus: At present, we have four other TUJ students who have notified us that they have tested positive. These students have not been on-campus. Their symptoms have been mild, and we wish them a speedy recovery.
  • Isolating: We also have several other members of our community who are isolating because a family member or friend has come into close contact with a person infected by COVID-19. Out of an abundance of caution, several others are isolating while monitoring their health conditions. These cases do not directly impact our campus at this time.

Should I be concerned about the COVID-positive student on campus?

This evening, we were notified that a student in our undergraduate program tested positive for COVID-19. This student has been on campus throughout the week. Having spoken with him, he is doing well and his symptoms are very mild.

It is not necessary to shift all classes online or close down our campus based on a single case. We will continue to monitor the situation and keep you apprised of any important developments however. Of note, there is no indication of transmission on campus at this time. Health officials have not asked us to shift online. Again though, we would like to enlist everyone’s cooperation so that we can keep our campus functioning.

Here are a few specific details provided with the student’s permission:

  • Current symptoms? Constant runny nose. NO fever, sore throat, headache.
  • Previous COVID test? Yes. Negative test 10 days ago due to sore throat and nose.
  • Student’s closest contact? Tested negative yesterday.
  • Re-testPlanning on testing tomorrow due to negative test of closest contact
  • Locations on campus since Monday: Tall desk next to student government office, Parliament – end of table right next to the Temple Owl painting, and classroom
  • In-person classes: Intellectual Heritage I (Shulz) and Microeconomics (Kahy)

At present, the student has contacted everyone who may have been in close proximity. He has also announced his situation on social media. Unless you have been contacted by this student, then you likely are not directly impacted.

What can you do?

  • Keep reading below to see if you are a close contact
  • Monitor your health daily
  • Refrain from coming to campus if you are feeling ill.
  • Wear quality masks diligently to protect you and others around you
  • Avoid crowds (especially indoors), seek out ventilated spaces, practice good hand hygiene, do not touch your face, and get vaccinated.

Am I a “close contact”?  If so, what do I do?

A “close contact” is defined as someone closer then 2 meters for more than 10 minutes without a mask. If you are a “close contact,” please do the following:

  • Stay away from campus and take your courses remotely through Jan. 28th.
  • Monitor your health and seek medical assistance if necessary.
  • Keep your professors in the loop about the situation and find ways to work with them remotely.
  • You can take a PCR tested, if desired, but it is not necessary so long as you remain away from campus until the date specified above.
  • Before coming back to campus, please make sure that you follow the “personal health monitoring” protocol in the attached safety protocol document.

What if I am NOT a “close contact”?

  • Fortunately, we have seen that masks, vaccines, and other preventative measures protect our campus community. When professors and students in a classroom are masked, the likelihood of COVID-19 transmission is low.
  • If you were not a “close contact” of the person diagnosed with COVID-19 (for example, you were in the same classroom but wearing a mask), then that would make you a casual contact.  Naturally, most of the students on campus will be “non-contacts.”
  • For casual contacts, the likelihood of transmission should be low. For non-contacts, the likelihood is even lower. We would ask that students in these categories monitor their health and continue to follow the necessary protocols.
  • If you are concerned about potential COVID exposure, testing is readily available through local clinics or self-testing kits sold at drug stores. Also, you have the option of participating remotely in any in-person classes next week.

Thank you again for your patience and understanding. Please let us know if you have any further questions.  We will continue to keep you apprised.

Matthew Wilson