March 11 Message to CSB/SJU Community

Dear CSB and SJU students, faculty, staff, and parents:

The College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University continue to monitor developments related to COVID-19. As the situation continues to evolve rapidly, the safety and well-being of our community remains our top priority. A team of CSB/SJU staff have been meeting regularly to monitor and follow recommendations from the Minnesota Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

At this time, CSB and SJU are following the guidance of the Minnesota Department of Health, which recommends that campuses remain open and that large-scale events are held as scheduled.

If you are experiencing symptoms of respiratory illness, we ask you to isolate yourself immediately. Then:

  • Seek medical advice by calling ahead to your healthcare provider or nurse line.
    • CSB Students: CSB Health Services (320-363-5605)
    • SJU Students: CentraCare Clinic – Saint John’s (320-656-7105)
  • Notify CSB/SJU that you are self-isolating. We can make accommodations on campus if necessary but we ask you to do this at home, if possible. We will connect you with appropriate resources to facilitate your travel home and to manage your classes while away from campus. 

With abundant caution, if students present with symptoms at campus clinics, we will request testing for COVID-19 and suggest self-monitoring. Please note that we are seeing cases of influenza, which can have similar symptoms.

We know many of you were able to travel over spring break. We ask that if you traveled to any CDC Warning Level 3 countries – at this time, China, Iran, Italy and South Korea – you notify us immediately. The CDC suggests those having traveled to Level 3 countries self-quarantine by staying home for 14 days from the time you left the Level 3 area and practice social distancing.

The Minnesota Department of Health has asked that we consult with them regarding decisions in changes to regular operations, and we are carefully monitoring ongoing developments. We encourage you to visit the CSB/SJU  COVID-19 website for the latest information.                    

It is important to emphasize that there is no immediate threat to our community. No members of the CSB/SJU communities have been diagnosed with coronavirus at this time.

CSB/SJU facilities staff have implemented extra measures to clean and disinfect surfaces in public areas that are touched frequently. This includes surfaces such as door handles, banisters, and elevator buttons. We encourage all in our community to practice good hygiene and stay home if you are ill. People at higher risk of getting very sick from COVID-19, including older adults and people with serious chronic medical conditions, should be especially attentive to preventative measures.

Academic Affairs is asking all faculty to prepare for the possibility of moving courses fully online. Between now and the end of next week, we are asking all faculty teaching this semester to host one session of each one of your courses online as a preparedness exercise.

Thank you for the extra caution and care you are offering to one another as we continue to monitor ways to ensure the health and safety of all community members. Stay abreast of the latest information at the CSB/SJU COVID-19 website.


Mary Dana Hinton                                     
CSB President                                              

Eugene McAllister
SJU Interim President