Dear Saint Joseph’s Community -

Thank you for your thoughtful and compassionate response to the news that students on campus have tested positive for COVID-19. We know that this information creates a certain amount of anxiety for many, but we have been inspired by the outpouring of support and solidarity for our students and for Saint Joe’s. And please remember that the Counseling Center is always there to meet your needs.

We have also received many questions from students since Study in Place was announced on Saturday night. Most of them refer to mobility - if, when, and how you can move around campus and off-campus.

The College and the CDC prefer that all students remain on campus, and in their rooms, as much as possible. Staying put is simply better for this community at this time, since it gives us the space we need to enhance our testing and contact tracing to isolate the virus. It’s better for learning, because we can offer better wi-fi access than many places in Maine and beyond. And it’s better for keeping families and other communities safe.

We are limiting off-campus student travel to essential travel only. What does that mean?

Day-to-day: Essential travel means that students who work off-campus may continue to go to their jobs, go to the grocery store, keep a doctor’s appointment, and other critical tasks. Please avoid non-essential travel, such as going to get a cup of coffee, to an off-campus social gathering, or a day of shopping or golfing. We will have plenty of activities on campus during this relatively short period of time. Help us keep this semester going strong until December.

Overnight travel presents a different level of risk to the community. Therefore, if you must leave overnight or longer, we ask that you remain off campus until the Study in Place period is over. If you are currently home, and have been practicing healthy behaviors, you may return to campus.

Commuter students should not come to campus until Study in Place is over. Commuters will be alerted about their testing dates, which will be pushed to late next week.

If you need to leave campus for any essential reason, let us know by completing this online form. Thank you!

Faculty and staff have also had questions for us - mostly about testing. Any faculty or staff that needs to be tested, based on wastewater testing of residence halls, or due to contact tracing will be notified and provided additional information about the need to be tested.

Voluntary COVID tests can be obtained for free through the Westbrook Fire Department. Information is available on their website. You do not need a doctor’s referral, or even be symptomatic. Simply register for a time, enter your information, and go get tested. You can expect a turnaround of test results in approximately 48-72 hrs.

Thank you all for your continued efforts to keep this community safe!
The Pandemic Response Team