Students wearing masks

COVID-19 Face Covering Policy and Guidance

Amended: October 9, 2020

In SVSU’s continuing effort to protect and promote the health and safety of all who come to SVSU and to comply with guidance from national, state-wide and local health agencies, the following requirements are effective immediately until further notice, and are subject to updates:

Non-medical grade face coverings/masks are required in any enclosed public space, except for inside one’s dorm or office with the doors closed and when eating or drinking.

They are also required outdoors whenever it is not possible to consistently maintain 6 feet of separation from other individuals for any period of time.

Students who cannot medically tolerate a face mask should contact the Office of Accessibility and Accommodation (

Faculty and staff who cannot medically tolerate a face mask should contact Human Resources (

All students, faculty, staff, and visitors must wear a face-covering/mask that fits over the mouth and nose in the following indoor locations and when conducting certain activities:

  • All retail stores, such as the bookstore.
  • All campus dining units, except while seated
  • Hallways
  • Public waiting or reception areas
  • Public restrooms
  • Classrooms, labs, conference rooms, and other shared spaces when two or more people are gathered.
  • Cubicles, reception areas and other open workspaces
  • All in-person meetings
  • Construction/renovation projects. This applies to all University employees who work on projects. The SVSU Office of Facility Planning and Construction Projects managers must also ensure that all external contractor personnel wears face coverings
  • All vendors visiting or making deliveries to offices or other indoor locations

If your work does not allow for staying at least 6 feet from other people, contact to review operations and recommend protective measures.

Certain areas are subject to additional requirements, such as laboratories. Additional requirements will be provided to affected individuals in the applicable areas.

Face coverings are not required in private office spaces when the door is closed and others are not present.

Employees are strongly encouraged to use their own face coverings. SVSU has secured non-medical grade face coverings for faculty, staff and students who perform on-campus work. Limited supplies are available for employees who do not have their own face covering. Employees who need a face covering should notify their supervisor. Departments can request face coverings for their employees by contacting Central Stores

Employees are expected to comply with the face covering requirement as a condition of employment. Employees who do not comply should be reminded of the policy by their supervisor and provided a face mask if needed. If an employee refuses to comply, ask the employee to go home for the day and contact the Office of Human Resources to initiate appropriate corrective action. Employees that are medically unable to tolerate a face covering must contact the Office of Human Resources for guidance.

Students should wear their own face coverings they have made or purchased. Students who have signed the NEST pledge will receive an SVSU face covering. Additional protective equipment, such as goggles or face shields, may be required in certain hands-on learning situations, such as chemistry labs and simulation labs; instructors will inform their students of this requirement as it is applicable.

Students are expected to follow face covering requirements inside all buildings on campus except private residential units. If a student is not wearing a face covering in accordance with this policy, a polite verbal request for compliance should be made to educate, encourage, and persuade individuals to wear face coverings. If a student refuses to comply with this policy, report the Student Code of Conduct violation in writing to Students who are medically unable to tolerate a face covering must contact the Office of Accessibility Resources and Accommodations for guidance prior to coming to campus.

Please see the following guidance for additional information on the use and care of face coverings.

Guidance for Face-Coverings/Masks

This guidance is based on information published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Visit the CDC for instructions on how to make your own DIY cloth face covering, as well as properly wearing and caring for your cloth face coverings.

Do not hoard or stockpile face coverings. Supplies are limited and difficult to find. Your cooperation is needed to ensure that we can protect our entire campus community.

N95 respirators and surgical masks must be reserved for healthcare workers, first responders and those performing higher risk tasks that require close contact with ill persons.

Reusable face coverings

Use reusable coverings until they become damaged, soiled, or wet. Reusable face coverings should be taken home and laundered each night.

Note: Students and staff may not wear a reusable face covering when conducting research at the laboratory bench with hazardous chemicals, biohazards or radioactive materials. Disposable face coverings must be worn.

Disposable Face Coverings

Use disposable coverings until they become damaged, soiled, or wet. If mask becomes damp from normal respiration, perspiration or from water, remove the mask and store in a sanitary location (e.g. paper bag to allow the mask to dry and then reuse.)

Students and staff who conduct research at the laboratory bench with hazardous chemicals, biohazards or radioactive materials must discard the disposable face covering at the end of the day.

Employees should have a dry backup covering or mask stored in a sanitary condition (within a closed paper or plastic bag) in the event their mask becomes damaged, soiled, or wet.

Employees and students are encouraged to wear face coverings that:

  • Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
  • Are secured with ties, ear loops, or equivalent
  • Include multiple layers of fabric
  • Allow for breathing without restriction

When removing your face mask, immediately discard or place it in a paper bag, not on a desk, the table/counter, workbench, etc., to prevent cross-contamination. Also, practice proper hand hygiene when touching your mask. Employees should wash cloth face coverings every day.

Visit this link for additional tips in applying, removing and caring for your reusable or disposable face covering.

Be advised that wearing a face covering does not replace the need for social distancing or other measures to prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19. Similarly, face shields are not adequate replacements for face coverings that fit snugly around the mouth and nose.

In addition to wearing cloth face coverings, remember:

  • Avoid contact with those who are sick, stay home if you're sick, and if you become sick at work, distance yourself from co-workers, contact your supervisor and go home.
  • Always maintain at least 6 feet of distance (at least two arm lengths) from others on campus. If you are unable to comply with this requirement, please notify your supervisor and
  • You are still considered a close contact, regardless of the use of a face covering, if you were less than 6 feet away for 15 minutes or longer with a COVID-19 positive person.
  • Frequently clean hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Practice good cough and sneeze etiquette.
  • Routinely disinfect high touch points, facilities, work areas, personal electronics, and shared equipment and spaces. Frequently-touched surfaces in University vehicles must be wiped down after each shift or before a different employee uses the vehicle, including steering wheels, door handles, turn signals, gear shifts, and seat belts.
  • Face coverings are not personal protective equipment. The CDC recommends their use to decrease the spread of droplets containing the virus that may be generated when the wearer coughs, sneezes or talks.

Information and Resources

  1. SVSU COVID-19 Update –
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention –

A risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place. COVID-19 is an extremely contagious disease that can lead to severe illness and death. Even with appropriate safety precautions in place, there is a risk of contracting COVID-19. By entering this campus, you voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19.



NEST Info Line
(989) 964-2110

Undergraduate Admissions
(989) 964-4200

Graduate Admissions
(989) 964-6096