March 6, 2020
Dear members of the LSU community,
The safety, health and well-being of our students, faculty and staff is my highest priority as your interim president. As the global spread of the COVID-19 virus, or coronavirus, continues to generate public concern, headlines and speculation, I want to update you on the actions we’re taking at LSU to properly respond to the situation.
While we’ve yet to have any cases of the virus confirmed in our state or at any of our campuses, we are monitoring the situation very closely and we are prepared if anyone in our LSU family becomes affected.
Earlier this week, I formed a task force of health experts, emergency management personnel and campus leaders to develop plans for preventing the contraction and/or spread of COVID-19 and to manage any potential impacts of the virus.
We are also taking steps to curb university-related international travel in order to limit exposure to the COVID-19 virus as much as possible, and more information about that will be coming shortly. If you have any personal trips planned, including for the upcoming spring break, I encourage you to review travel guidance from the CDC and U.S. Department of State and use your best judgment. Also, please remember that limiting your travel isn’t just about protecting yourself, it’s also about protecting those around you.
Though it may sound simple, practicing appropriate hygiene is the most important thing we can all do right now. That means thoroughly washing our hands with soap and water at regular intervals, covering our coughs, limiting close contact with others and disinfecting common, shared objects. The CDC also has a comprehensive list of COVID-19 preventative behaviors that I encourage you to check out.
At LSU, we’re making soap, antibacterial solution and other hygienic supplies more widely available across campus. We’re also increasing the frequency and scope of our cleaning efforts throughout our residence halls, academic buildings and athletic facilities, including chairs, doorknobs, handrails and other surfaces commonly associated with the spread of germs.
At this moment, it’s important that we all stay calm. What is needed now is solid planning and preparation based on the most up-to-date facts available. That’s what we’re doing at LSU to keep all of our students, faculty and staff safe, and that’s what I encourage you to do in your own homes as well.
I will keep you all updated as new developments occur.
LSU Interim President