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What happens Off-campus impacts On-campus Decisions

Written by on August 17, 2020

Photo courtesy Illinois State University Facebook page

NORMAL, Ill.- In an email the Illinois State University president welcomed back students and reiterated the importance of following COVID-19 safety measures put in place by the University, the Illinois Board of Higher Education, and the Governor. On-campus testing will also become available for students if they show a Redbird ID card.

“Unfortunately, the University’s ability to impose these protocols ends at our campus borders,” said ISU president Larry Dietz.

While responding to a large, off-campus gathering this past weekend, officials observed hundreds of people not following the most basic tenets of Coronavirus safety and ignoring protocols for physical distancing and the wearing of face-coverings.

“Although I cannot confirm all involved were Illinois State students, that is the perception. I cannot over emphasize how important it is that we follow all public health guidance. It is provided for the sole purpose of protecting each of us from contracting COVID-19,” said Dietz.

Also, McLean County Health Department continues to discourage holding or attending large gatherings, which are a high risk for spreading the virus.  Parties and events where social distancing is not practiced needlessly put all those present in danger. 

The McLean County Health Department is recommending that you be tested for COVID 5-7 days after attending a party.  

“As a Redbird family, we have an obligation to protect those who are most vulnerable to this disease by making choices in line with the guidance of public health officials, said Dietz. “We are in this together and share in the responsibility of keeping ourselves and others healthy.”

According to McLean County Health Department Administrator Jessica McKnight, McLean County has now their sixteenth COVID-related death in McLean County, a woman in her 60s. “Our thoughts are with all those who have been affected by the virus,” said McKnight. 

Governor J.B. Pritzker is strongly considering moving Illinois back to a more restrictive Coronavirus phase due to health and safety metrics that are changing for the worse.

“There is no question that what happens at colleges and universities across the state will play a role in those metrics,” said Dietz. “Ultimately, what happens off campus will profoundly impact on-campus decisions.  Please avoid large crowds and encourage others to do the same.”


If you are experiencing Coronavirus symptoms, contact Student Health Services. Now students who are not experiencing symptoms will be able to be tested on campus.