Chuck Stone teaching Physics Field Session

Summer 2020 (and this physics course) are wrapping up—Students in Physics Teaching Professor Chuck Stone’s PHGN200 summer field session yesterday were fully engaged in a lesson on optics, while masked up to keep themselves and others safe. The Summer 2020 term ends next Thursday, August 13. Finish strong, Orediggers!

Students receive update on testing, travel guidance and more in Thursday email—Yesterday, Student Life leaders and the Mines executive team shared updates and new guidance with new and returning Mines students. The email included a number of new updates and repeated others from recent town halls. Some of the highlights:

  • The university is finalizing plans to test all students living in residence halls and campus fraternity and sorority houses on the day of their move-in during the week of August 16-21, as well as at regular intervals throughout the year. (See “Campus COVID-19 testing partner selected” below for more information.)
  • Although not a mandatory requirement, Mines is asking all students to complete a COVID-19 test prior to returning to campus and to self-isolate as much as is possible before traveling to Golden.
  • The Student Rec Center, ORC, Intramurals office and other Student Life areas will be offering many recreational and social opportunities for students.
  • Students will be required to check in when they arrive on campus using QR codes posted in the residence halls (for residents) and academic buildings (for registering with the registrar’s office).

Vice President of Student Life Dan Fox and the Student Life team, along with university leaders, ended the letter writing, “We are convinced that Orediggers can meet the challenges posed by COVID-19 in ways few other universities can. Whether you’re coming to campus or learning from home this fall, we know all of you will do what’s necessary to keep COVID-19 from spreading. The payoff for this work and common commitment? One another’s good health and safety, progress to graduation, access to Mines resources and the unique components of a Mines education, and strong connections to your friends and workgroups as we progress through this semester.” Read the full message here.

New mask policy posted—Yesterday’s student email also pointed to a new policy that outlines in detail Mines’ (and government and health officials’) requirements for mask wearing on campus—whether inside (whenever you are outside your residence hall room) or outside (wherever maintaining social distances of at least 6 feet is not possible—such as on sidewalks).

Campus COVID-19 testing partner selected—Mines is partnering with COVIDCheck Colorado (CCC), a social benefit enterprise of the Gary Community Investment Company, to implement a COVID-19 testing program for Mines. CCC is finalizing plans to offer a testing site on campus as well. The initial testing program will focus on residence halls, 1750 Jackson, Mines Park, and fraternities and sororities, and expand to testing other students at regular intervals. Mines is working with CCC to also build appropriate capacity to further test employees who have frequent contact with students and wish to participate or who have been identified as having close contact with an individual who has tested positive at Mines.

Celebration of Mines goes all online—SAIL has made the decision to host Celebration of Mines entirely online this fall. We are building out a platform within Canvas so you can explore our many clubs and organizations and figure out how you want to get involved on campus this year. Clubs and organizations, be sure to complete the registration on Engage. Already registered? You’ll receive a confirmation email soon. Contact Alexandra Demopoulos at with any questions or concerns.

Fall Career Day goes virtual, with even more opportunities to interact with recruiters—Mark your calendar for the Fall 2020 Career Fair, to be held virtually over THREE days on Tuesday, September 15; Wednesday, September 16; and Wednesday, October 14. Hours are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day, with an additional hour from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. reserved just for graduating students. Different employers will be present on each of the days, giving you more time to interact with a wider range of industries and opportunities.

We’ll be using the Brazen virtual platform designed specifically for hosting virtual career fairs with text, audio, and video chat capacity. Students will be able to meet and interact with hundreds of company representatives through text and video chat, so don’t forget to dress professionally (from the waist up, at least)! Come learn about career options and potential employers who want to speak with Mines students. Workshops to prepare for virtual Career Day will be held during the two weeks before the events. For more information, contact the Career Center at 303-273-3233 or

Return to Mines Task Force finalizes fall building access schedule—Campus building access will be a little different than usual this semester to help keep our Oredigger community safe. During normal university business hours (7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday-Friday), most campus buildings will be open and accessible by all. After 5:30 p.m. on weeknights and weekends, many academic buildings will remain open for students and employees only—access these buildings by scanning your Blastercard. Other buildings will have proctor access only, meaning you must have access granted specifically by the building’s proctor to enter (either via Blastercard or hard key) after normal business hours. A full access schedule will be published early next week on the Returning to Mines website.

Hot tip: Make sure you always have your Blastercard with you this fall—especially if you will be on campus studying or working after normal business hours.

Volunteers needed for Convocation—Faculty and staff with a few hours to spare are needed to help Mines execute a new, safe and technically sophisticated Convocation ceremony on Thursday, August 20. Volunteers, like everyone on campus, will be required to wear a mask and observe social distancing guidance (6 feet or more) while warmly welcoming new Orediggers to Mines. Volunteers will greet students and help set up spaces for the ceremony, which will be simultaneously broadcast to and from 35 different rooms on campus. Use this form to volunteer for the ceremony, as well as other welcome week roles.

Mines wants YOU for the campus COVID-19 rapid response team—The Mines COVID-19 Response Initiator Team (CRIT) is seeking Mines employees who would be able to dedicate part of their work week to responding to reported COVID cases within the campus community. CRIT receives reports of positive and/or presumed COVID cases from the Mines Community Member COVID-19 Reporting Tool and is responsible for initiating rapid interventions to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 on campus. That includes interviewing cases to determine when they were last on campus, the campus locations they visited and the people with whom they had close contact. Training and tools will be provided. If you are interested in being a part of this team, please speak with your supervisor about your workload and ability to spend up to six hours per week helping this team. If you and your supervisor agree this is feasible, have your supervisor reach out to Barb O’Kane at You can also contact Barb if you’d like more information about this team.

A message from Human Resources on Mines employees working from other states—The COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the progression towards online learning, has shifted where and how work is being performed at Mines and several other institutions. With this adaptation, many of you may naturally be wondering about how this affects the way Mines finds, engages and employs talent.

While there are some talent pool benefits to considering non-local or non-Colorado candidates, as of today, Mines is not officially registered to do business in other states (or countries). Discussions are under way to motivate the due diligence required to allow Mines institutionally to make an informed decision regarding this, but no decisions have been proposed or made as of yet. There are state registrations (almost all come with a cost to Mines), tax, payroll and benefit implications to consider. Mines and thousands of other companies and institutions are investigating options and evaluating the risks, advantages and considerations. HR has anticipated this demand and has already begun conversations with Legal and Payroll, but again, no decision (or subsequent policy) has been made.

Please know that we are continuing with this investigation process but advancing with hires and allowing existing employees who are located in other states puts Mines and the employee at risk for wrongful reporting when work is being conducted in locations where Mines is not registered. Please work with your talent acquisition partner to ensure compliant search strategies are being deployed and notify HR if you are aware of existing employees who are working outside the state of Colorado.