Coronavirus Updates

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Updated March 13, 2020

Colorado School of Mines continues to closely monitor the global outbreak of the novel strain of the coronavirus (COVID-19). 

The latest updates, as well as all previous communications, are included below.

Emergency management officials are in close coordination with the Jefferson County Public Health Department (JCPH) and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and have assembled a cross-functional team to coordinate planning and actions in order to mitigate impact on education and services, develop contingency plans, and support students and employees.

Current University Travel Guidance

University Travel

  • Until further notice, all non-essential university-affiliated travel to international and out-of-state destinations is suspended. This includes travel for conferences, visits to Mines affiliates or research sites, athletics, alumni and donor events and more.
  • For questions about what qualifies as essential and non-essential travel, please contact the Provost’s Office (faculty/students) or Human Resources (staff).

Personal Travel

  • All non-essential personal travel to international destinations is strongly discouraged.
  • Should you travel through or to an area subject to a Level 2 or 3 Travel Health Notice from the CDC, you will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days off campus prior to returning to Mines.
  • Travelers returning from any other international destinations are asked to consider self-quarantining off campus for several days prior to returning to Mines. This will allow time to assess your health situation (and symptoms), as well as emerging information on possible infections connected to your travel destinations, flights and more. 
  • Mines is strongly advising against cruise ship travel, in line with the CDC’s explicit warnings. Anyone who disembarks from a cruise ship will be required to self-quarantine off campus for 14 days following that trip.  
  • Mines is requesting that all members of our campus community limit their personal out-of-state travel and avoid the U.S. cities and states currently hardest-hit by the COVID-19 outbreak. As of this writing, the CDC is reporting the highest reported infection numbers in the states of California, Washington and New York.

How to Protect Yourself and Others From Coronavirus

What is a coronavirus?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that include the common cold and more serious respiratory illnesses. The most current information and guidance about COVID-19 can be found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Symptoms of COVID-19

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath        

How to Protect Yourselves and Others

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Frequently wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. No sink nearby? Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol
  • Clean common spaces with disinfecting wipes (doorknobs, countertops, desks, etc.)

What to do if you become ill

  • Stay home if you have a fever (100.4 F or above) or are experiencing significant bouts of coughing or sneezing.
  • Do not return to school or work until you are free of fever, signs of fever or any other symptoms for at least 72 hours without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medications (e.g. cough suppressants)
  • Cover your mouth with a tissue (or the sleeve of your inner elbow) when sneezing or coughing and then throw the tissue away immediately into the nearest trash receptacle. 

CDC recommendations on when to contact a health care provider

  • If you have traveled to an area significantly impacted by COVID-19 and are experiencing a fever and lower respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath, chest pain)
  • If you have had recent contact with someone who may have been infected with COVID-19 and you are experiencing a fever or lower respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath, chest pain)
  • If seeking medical care and you suspect COVID-19, call ahead and let the medical office or emergency room know about your symptoms and any recent travel.

Remote Learning and Remote Work


Effective March 30, 2020, Colorado School of Mines will transition to online delivery for all of our courses for the remainder of the semester. Course delivery will occur mostly through Zoom and Canvas.

To provide faculty time to prepare for this transition, Mines will cancel class meetings for the week of March 16-20.  Course instructors will be in contact with their students concerning updated plans for any exams previously scheduled for next week, and remote completion options will be offered for all remaining exams this semester. Similarly, instructors will be in contact with their classes concerning completion of laboratory and project-based course work.


In accordance with the Governor’s Stay-at-Home order, all employees who are not identified as providing critical services are expected to remain off campus and work remotely. Essential employees will continue supporting the students who remain on-campus, the faculty and assistants who are maintaining critical research labs, and the remote learning of our students. Supervisors should keep in close contact with staff who are working remotely so that they can contribute to our mission as an academic and research institution.

The remote work mode of operation will continue through Friday, April 17. Should state or local health officials extend stay-at-home orders, Mines will follow suit and lengthen its remote work provisions again. 

Coronavirus-Related Campus Communications

Mines Students: Website to help you “Keep Learning” is now live

With Monday, March 30, and the resumption of classes in mind, a new Mines website has launched offering students all the information, tips and detailed instructions needed to get online—and be successful. The “Keep Learning” website offers six distinct sections that briefly walk students through the different tools (Zoom, Canvas), activities (collaborate, prepare) and resources (including remote access to campus computer labs) they’ll need online. “If you have 30 minutes this week, we hope...

Mines students: Message from the Provost on remote learning

The following message was sent to all Mines students on 3/20/20: Dear Mines Students: I understand the current situation is stressful and has created new challenges for many of you. Please know that we are here to help and support you.  We will get through this together, as Orediggers. Things may feel a bit uncertain right now and you are likely feeling a little anxious about how your classes will function for the remainder of the semester. Trust me, your instructors feel the same way right...

Updates from Enrollment Management: Resources for current, prospective students

The following message was sent to Mines faculty and staff on 3/20/20: Dear Faculty and Staff, Hello from Enrollment Management! We hope you are doing well and successfully adjusting to the virtual campus at Mines. We thought it would be helpful for you to know what Enrollment Management is offering prospective and currents students just in case you are working with anyone who might need assistance. Admissions: On-Campus Visit Experiences Are Cancelled All on-campus visit experiences are...

Mines Market now take-out only

For the safety of our students and staff and in keeping with new public health guidance, Mines Market is now (as of today, March 20) take-out only. Starting tomorrow, Saturday, March 21, take-out lunch will be available for pick up from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and dinner from 5 to 6 p.m. daily. Breakfast will be available as a boxed breakfast option that can be pre-ordered by emailing or calling 303-273-3359 or picked up at dinner the evening before. The boxes may...

GRADS conference transitioning to online-only event April 21-23 

In the finest Mines tradition of perseverance through adversity, Graduate Student Government has decided to turn this year’s Graduate Research and Discovery Symposium (GRADS) into a 100 percent online conference. Oral presentations will be formatted similar to TED Talks, with PowerPoint presentations live-streamed and the presenter in view. A moderator will field questions from online guests, read them aloud to the presenter, and the presenter will respond. Instead of poster presentations,...

Distribution Services ceasing deliveries through March 27 

Distribution Services will be operating with a single staff member each day from March 19-27. Deliveries to the majority of campus will cease, with the exception of a delivery and pickup at the MAPS office on Tuesdays. All other mail and packages received during this time will be distributed when regular hours resume. Mines staff may contact Distribution Services at 303-273-3271 and arrange to pick up any needed deliveries, as well as drop off items for mailing. Central Receiving is located at...

Student Center offices, services have moved to a remote/virtual service model

Effective Thursday, March 19, the Student Center is closed to in-person visitors and students until further notice, but access to all essential services remains available to students, faculty/staff and community members during regular business hours. Please see the websites below to find contact information and additional online service options. Campus Events or email Blastercard: Email to request a new BlasterCard Blaster’s Basket food pantry: While...

Chem store, lock shop shifting to on-demand service

Effective immediately, the Chemical Storage and Distribution Facility (Chem Store in Coolbaugh) will no longer have walk-up window service. EHS will have a few staff members on campus Monday-Friday and will shift to an on-demand delivery service model. Send questions to: Chemical Requisition and Delivery: EHS will continue to accept and process chemical requisitions online. Your order will be hand delivered to your laboratory as identified on your chemical requisition form. For...

Guidance for research in a virtual university

The following message was sent to Mines faculty and graduate students on 3/18/20: Amid increasing concern over COVID-19, Mines is stepping up our efforts to protect students, faculty, and staff, and to protect our wider community. As President Johnson said in his 3/17/2020 email, we are shifting to virtual university mode: going virtual for those functions that we can possibly accomplish remotely, while minimizing (and planning carefully for) those we cannot. Research & Technology Transfer...

Notification of confirmed case of COVID-19 at Mines

The following message was sent to all Mines faculty, students and staff on 3/18/20: Dear Mines Community: Today we learned that a member of our campus community has tested positive for the novel coronavirus COVID-19. The research associate is currently at home in self-isolation following the county’s health care order. This individual, who works in Berthoud Hall, was last on campus Tuesday, March 17. The laboratory where the research associate works and all common areas of Berthoud are being...