May 10, 2021: MSU removes outdoor mask requirement

Dear Spartan Community,

I want to take this opportunity to provide information about updates to our campus for the summer, given recent changes by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) regarding COVID-19 pandemic protocols.

Effective today, May 10, masks will no longer be needed in outdoor settings on campus or MSU-affiliated properties for individuals or small gatherings. Per the MDHHS order, masks are not required outdoors unless a gathering has 100 or more people. As such, masks will still be required for the College of Law outdoor in-person graduation ceremony on Friday, May 14, which will have 500 people in attendance.

This change is for outdoors only. Face coverings are still required while indoors on campus or MSU-affiliated properties. Off campus, the university continues to urge Spartans to follow CDC guidelines

The city of East Lansing has informed the university it will potentially be changing its face covering policy as well. The East Lansing City Council is set to consider a policy resolution Tuesday that, if approved, would eliminate the requirement to wear masks in downtown outdoor public spaces, beginning Wednesday, May 12.

Similar to the spring semester, weekly participation in the Early Detection Program this summer is mandatory for undergraduate students living, working, or coming to campus for any reason, including in-person classes or labs. Other members of the MSU community can continue to volunteer in the program for free, weekly COVID-19 testing and are encouraged to do so. If you were registered in the program in the spring, your registration will carry over for the summer. However, if you are new to the program, you will need to complete your registration online.

We also are reducing the hours for COVID-19 testing at Spartan Stadium. Beginning May 17, testing will be available from 8:30 a.m. to noon on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Those being tested can still expect same-day results. To find a testing location outside of those days, please visit the state of Michigan’s COVID-19 testing portal.

The state also recently shared its MI Vacc to Normal plan, which sets vaccine milestones to enable a return to in-person work for all sectors of business and rescind public health orders. The university is monitoring the state vaccine levels as we work on our return to campus plan for this fall. More details from university leadership will be coming soon. For now, if you have been working remotely, please continue to do so.   

Lastly, I continue encouraging everyone – faculty, staff and students – to get a vaccine. It is the most important thing you can do to protect yourself, your family and friends and your fellow Spartans. We have opportunities here in East Lansing at the MSU Pavilion and the MSU Health Care Pharmacy to receive the vaccine. If you’re living in another community right now, please search out ways to get the vaccine wherever you are. Many commercial locations are offering the vaccine and the state of Michigan has a website to search for availability.

We are all looking forward to the summer, warmer weather and a chance to recharge. And just beyond that, a return to our beautiful campus where we can reconnect with one another. The more people in our community who receive the vaccine gets us closer to a more normal experience, together, in the fall.

Stay safe and healthy,

Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D. (he/him)