UNK gives mask, safety guidance for students, faculty and staff

The University of Nebraska at Kearney reminds students, employees and visitors returning to campus to maintain physical distancing and wear masks when interacting with others.

As part of its commitment to providing a safe and healthy environment, all people are expected to wear a mask while on the UNK campus and maintain physical distancing wherever possible. This follows guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and University of Nebraska Medical Center.

COVID-19 is still present in Kearney and communities across the region, and universal masking of students and employees – along with social distancing – greatly decreases the risk of infection and community spread.

Employees and students working alone in their offices, labs or room do not need to wear a mask. Masks should be worn if others are within six feet and when going into a public or common area. Visitors are expected to wear a mask for their entire visit.

At a minimum, the expectation is to wear a cloth mask.

“Cloth masks are designed to control the spread of respiratory droplets when we breathe and talk,” said Cindy Ference, associate director of UNK Student Health and Counseling. “They protect others from what we might be carrying. They don’t fully protect us from what is in the air. Choosing to not wear a mask doesn’t affect our own health as much as it does the health of those around us.”

Zoom meetings, increasing physical distance to at least six feet, and good hygiene practices are other ways to protect your health and the health of those around you.

Employees and students are to self-monitor for symptoms concerning COVID-19. Those displaying symptoms should notify their supervisor and contact UNK Student Health at 308.865.8218.

UNK began lifting its campus closure on May 18. Faculty and staff who can work remotely should continue to do so with approval from their supervisor. While campus facilities are accessible for employees, buildings remain locked.