Campus Update –
Read about Ozarks' ongoing response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
COVID-19 Campus Update

COVID-19 Campus Update

Information is Updated Week days at 08:30Am ct

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, University of the Ozarks has continuously planned and adapted to the ever-changing circumstances of this unpredictable health crisis. Led by a multi-sector team – the Task Force to Repopulate Campus – the University has created a public health and operations framework for the safe repopulation of campus and return to classes for the 2021–22 academic year. Our planning explored multiple scenarios, which gives us the ability to change direction if conditions or the guidance of government and public health officials evolve. At the heart of all the University’s planning has been and will continue to be the health and well-being of all University members.

While University of the Ozarks and the entire world continue to face challenges from COVID-19, it is critical that we take care of each other and ourselves. One of the greatest strengths of our University is the cohesive and supportive community that we have all come to rely on. While this pandemic presents many unique and serious challenges, we are confident that this collective spirit will elevate us as we navigate the coming weeks and months. We know that many in our campus community are eager to return to campus, while others may need to continue to learn and work remotely. We will continue to foster community across campus, in-person and virtually, in new and innovative ways. We will follow new health measures and take personal responsibility as part of our efforts to prioritize health and well-being.

The Guidelines below will serve as the guidepost for repopulating campus this academic year:

Spring 2022: Mandatory 2-week mask mandate regardless of vaccination status.

Return to Campus Mandatory Testing:

All Students, Faculty, and Staff are required to test prior to returning to campus from Winter Break, regardless of vaccination status. A rapid antigen test (while supplies last) or PCR test will be performed. If the test result shows “positive” for antigen, then a PCR test will be performed. The PCR results are expected back in 24-48 hours.

Required Weekly Testing:

All unvaccinated students, faculty, and staff will be required to test on a weekly basis in the Mabee Gymnasium, beginning on January 19.  Testing will take place weekly on Wednesdays from 8am to 9am. If you miss this testing time slot, you will need to test independently and submit a test result within 48 hours. A rapid antigen test (while supplies last) or PCR test will be performed. If the test result shows “positive” for antigen, then a PCR test will be performed. The PCR results are expected back in 24-48 hours.If you are fully or partially vaccinated (one of the two required shots) you will be exempt from the weekly testing

Students/Faculty/Staff Quarantine Guidelines:

Given what we currently know about COVID-19 and the Omicron variant, CDC is shortening the recommended time for isolation for the public. People with COVID-19 should isolate for 5 days and if they are asymptomatic or their symptoms are resolving (without fever for 24 hours), follow that by 5 days of wearing a mask when around others to minimize the risk of infecting people they encounter. The change is motivated by science demonstrating that the majority of SARS-CoV-2 transmission occurs early in the course of illness, generally in the 1-2 days prior to onset of symptoms and the 2-3 days after.

Additionally, CDC is updating the recommended quarantine period for anyone in the general public who is exposed to COVID-19. For people who are unvaccinated or are more than six months out from their second mRNA dose (or more than 2 months after the J&J vaccine) and not yet boosted, CDC now recommends quarantine for 5 days followed by strict mask use for an additional 5 days. Alternatively, if a 5-day quarantine is not feasible, it is imperative that an exposed person wear a well-fitting mask at all times when around others for 10 days after exposure. Individuals who have received their booster shot do not need to quarantine following an exposure, but should wear a mask for 10 days after the exposure.  For all those exposed, best practice would also include a test for SARS-CoV-2 at day 5 after exposure. If symptoms occur, individuals should immediately quarantine until a negative test confirms symptoms are not attributable to COVID-19.

COVID-19 Exposure Guidelines

Students, please note: Quarantine spaces are limited on campus. Vaccinated and Unvaccinated students will have to make special arrangements to quarantine in-place or at home if quarantine spaces are no longer available. For students that cannot return home, the university will make every effort to assign a residential private space for the duration of the quarantine/isolation period. Fully and Non-vaccinated students who are asymptomatic will be required to quarantine for 5 days.

Quarantine in-place means you will be confined to your residence hall room or apartment and will only be allowed to use the bathroom. Food will be delivered to your residence hall or apartment from dining services as per your daily meal selection on the Aramark’s transact app. If you have an unvaccinated roommate, they will be required to quarantine. If they are vaccinated and asymptomatic quarantine will not be required for them.

Faculty/Staff, please note: The two-week paid sick and family leave benefit for COVID-related illness that has been offered by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 will not be in effect during the upcoming academic year. Any sick days taken during the 2021-22 academic year, including COVID-related absences, must be counted against an employees’ University-accrued sick or vacation days.

As a reminder of the current COVID guidelines on campus:

For those faculty, staff and students who are UNVACCINATED or NOT FULLY VACCINATED:

  • Per CDC guidelines, those members of the campus community who are unvaccinated are required to wear masks when they are inside a campus building and in close proximity (same room, public space, restrooms, etc.) with others who are either vaccinated or unvaccinated. Masks do not have to be worn when outside or alone in an office or room with the door closed, alone in a vehicle or when eating or drinking — essentially, when you are alone in a private space. Those who are not fully vaccinated or those who have not uploaded their vaccination cards will be asked to fill out the daily COVID certifications. They will also be required to undergo weekly COVID testing (see above).

In addition, the University’s plan for the Spring 2022 Semester is to require all faculty and students to wear masks in all classrooms. Masks will also be required for any student, faculty or staff indoor gathering of 10 or more people.

In outdoor gatherings, Partially and Unvaccinated persons will be required to wear a face covering in gatherings of 10 persons or more.However, participants should continue to practice social distancing.

Thank you for your continued efforts to help keep our campus community healthy and safe.

Guiding Principles on Returning to Campus

These guidelines will be updated as appropriate. The online version posted on our webpage supersedes any printed version.

Campus Entrance

Critical Info About Coronavirus-Related Decisions (Read All)

The Reopening Task Force provides some guidelines for the University community.


President Dunsworth announced that University of the Ozarks is planning to return to face-to-face education in the fall.


President Dunsworth announced that University of the Ozarks is suspending all classes until after Spring Break. Afterwards, classes will resume in an all online method.


HEERF I, II, & III Reporting

As part of the CARES Act, CRRSA Act, and ARP Act, the University of the Ozarks will provide reporting on the disbursement of funds received from the Higher Education Relief Funds I, II, and III.

Facebook Live

President Dunsworth gave live campus updates about the state of the University via Facebook through the spring semester. For those who do not have Facebook, we’ve also saved these updates on YouTube.

Like our Facebook page for notifications of any future live updates.

Previous weekly updates:

September 3, 2021FacebookYouTube
August 27, 2021FacebookYouTube
January 22, 2021FacebookYouTube
December 11, 2020FacebookYouTube
November 20, 2020FacebookYouTube
October 30, 2020FacebookYouTube
October 16, 2020FacebookYouTube
October 9, 2020FacebookYouTube
October 2, 2020FacebookYouTube
September 25, 2020FacebookYouTube
September 18, 2020FacebookYouTube
September 11, 2020FacebookYouTube
September 4, 2020FacebookYouTube
August 28, 2020FacebookYouTube
August 21, 2020FacebookYouTube
August 14, 2020FacebookYouTube
August 7, 2020FacebookYouTube
July 31, 2020FacebookYouTube
July 24, 2020FacebookYouTube
July 17, 2020FacebookYouTube
July 10, 2020FacebookYouTube
June 19, 2020FacebookYouTube
May 22, 2020FacebookYouTube
May 15, 2020FacebookYouTube
May 8, 2020FacebookYouTube
May 1, 2020FacebookYouTube
April 24, 2020FacebookYouTube
April 17, 2020FacebookYouTube
April 9, 2020FacebookYouTube
April 3, 2020FacebookYouTube
March 27, 2020FacebookYouTube
March 20, 2020FacebookYouTube

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