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Dear Campus Community,

This week, USD saw a sizeable increase in cases on our campus. As reported on the USD Case Management Dashboard, there are 51 current active cases of COVID-19 at USD.

This increase serves as a reminder that we must remain vigilant and continue to make safe decisions. South Dakota is experiencing a high rate of active COVID-19 cases, meaning the chance of infection in our state is greater than it has been previously. Additionally, we know COVID-19 hotspots have been linked to positive cases among adults between the ages of 18 and 24. The increasing case rate in South Dakota and the demographics of our campus community make us uniquely vulnerable.

With this in mind, it is critical that we do our part to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and protect each other. Please wear face coverings, wash your hands regularly and maintain physical distance from others when possible. We urge you to avoid frequenting places where these rules are not followed. These preventative measures are just as important now as they were when we began our semester together. Even if you are not concerned about your own health, you carry a responsibility to protect others, some of whom may be at an increased risk for severe illness. Following safe practices is particularly important for those visiting family and returning to their home communities. By making the decision to #ProtectThePack, you are not only protecting others on campus; you are also decreasing the likelihood that you or your peers infect friends and family beyond our USD and Vermillion communities.

Thank you for your continued efforts to make our campus a safer place. If you test positive for COVID-19, we encourage you to self-report by sending an email to COVID19@usd.edu. You can also contact us with questions about USD’s response to the pandemic. For more information and to access resources, visit usd.edu/COVID19.

COVID-19 Task Force