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Student Return to Campus Guide

Guiding Principles

Mount St. Mary’s policies and protocols for responding to the COVID-19 pandemic are rooted in safety for our students, seminarians, faculty, staff and the public we interact with.

The primary goals for the University’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic are to protect public health and continue the institution’s vital missions of education and service.

The Mount’s plans are aligned and consistent with local orders and ordinances of the Town of Emmitsburg and Frederick County, as well as the State of Maryland. The Mount’s plans will also follow recommendations from the federal government, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Maryland Department of Public Health and the Mount Safe Team Initiative.

Our knowledge and understanding of the COVID-19 virus continues to evolve, and our policies and plans will be updated when appropriate as more information becomes available.

FAQs: Fall Semester

Is Mount St. Mary’s open for on-campus classes?

Yes. Most courses at the Emmitsburg campus in Fall 2021 will be in-person-only or in-person-with-web-conferencing by permission (WC). Students and seminarians who are enrolled in courses at the Emmitsburg campus are required to attend class sessions in person unless they have been granted an exception to do otherwise by the associate provost or rector of the Seminary, respectively. In WC courses, temporary exceptions can be made for one to a few class sessions in special circumstances (for athletes who are traveling, for example) with permission from the instructor. Students enrolled in classes at the Frederick campus should check the course schedule to see what the attendance options are for their classes.

Will the university require students to be tested for COVID-19 before they arrive on campus?

Students and seminarians who are not fully vaccinated will be tested upon their arrival to campus at the beginning of the term. These students and seminarians also are strongly encouraged to be tested for COVID-19 (PCR test) within 4 days prior to returning to campus. Other students will be vaccinated and do not need to be tested for COVID-19.

Will students be required to take a temperature every day?

Students and seminarians who are not fully vaccinated must monitor their temperature and COVID-19 symptoms daily. A person is “fully vaccinated” two weeks after their second vaccine dose in a two-dose series (Pfizer or Moderna vaccines) or two weeks after a single-dose vaccine (Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine).

Is the Mount’s academic calendar being modified due to coronavirus?

No, the traditional academic calendar is in place for the fall 2021 semester. It includes a week-long Fall Break (10/2-10/10) and five days for Thanksgiving (11/24-28). December 10 is the last day of classes for the main campus with final exams December 13-17.

When will students move in?

Residential students will move in between August 19 and August 22. Residence Life will invite students to sign up for a staggered move-in time period. First-year students will check in on August 19 between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. Returning students will check in on August 21 and August 22 between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.

How much of the class time will be online vs. in person?

Most courses at the Emmitsburg campus in Fall 2021 will be in-person-only or in-person-with-web-conferencing by permission (WC). Students and seminarians who are enrolled in courses at the Emmitsburg campus are required to attend class sessions in person unless they have been granted an exception to do otherwise by Associate Provost David McCarthy or Rector of the Seminary Andrew Baker, respectively. In WC courses, temporary exceptions can be made for one to a few class sessions in special circumstances (for athletes who are traveling, for example) with permission from the instructor. Students enrolled in classes at the Frederick campus should check the course schedule to see what the attendance options are for their classes.

Can a student opt to do their semester online?

Students and seminarians who are enrolled in courses at the Emmitsburg campus are required to attend class sessions in person unless they have been granted an exception to do otherwise by Associate Provost David McCarthy or Rector of the Seminary Andrew Baker, respectively.

What measures is the university taking to encourage Mount community members to protect each other?

Students who are attending classes on the Emmitsburg campus are required to be vaccinated for COVID-19, unless they have received an exemption for medical reasons or strongly held religious beliefs. Students taking classes solely at the Frederick campus are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated as are employees on both campuses. The university anticipates a vaccination rate of greater than 90%. In addition, other risk reduction measures include a universal indoor mask requirement, surveillance testing, handwashing and transmission etiquette and isolation and contact tracing.

What processes and procedures is the Mount putting in place to provide a healthy environment?

Our award-winning custodial team, who have been trained on sanitation of coronavirus, have implemented enhanced and more frequent cleaning and disinfection of common areas and bathrooms are cleaned twice a day. We also have adjusted HVAC systems to optimize air flow and filtering and every room has air conditioning in place.

How will the university monitor for and contain coronavirus?

With the requirement for students to be vaccinated against COVID-19, we expect to have very few cases of COVID-19 on campus. The monitoring and containment program includes testing of 100 percent of unvaccinated students before the semester begins, wastewater testing of residence halls, periodic testing of all unvaccinated students and employees as well as a sample of vaccinated students and employees. Student-athletes will be tested per NEC guidelines. Students and employees who are not fully vaccinated should monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms daily.

Student Resources for Remote Instruction

Resources for students who may be taking some or all of their classes online.