Resources and Updates Related to COVID-19 (Coronavirus)


Last updated June 23, 2020

About this Page

This page will inform the Western Colorado University community on relevant updates regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus). Detailed information on many topics is available on the Your Questions—Answered page.

Campus Operations: Summer and Fall

Fall 2020 Semester

On Thursday, June 4, Western announced the following academic schedule changes for fall:

  • The Fall 2020 semester will start Monday, Aug. 17, 2020, one week early
  • On-campus courses will end Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2020, before Thanksgiving Break
  • Final Exams will be online from Dec. 1 through Dec. 4, 2020, two weeks early, so that students need not return to campus between Thanksgiving and Winter Break (they may stay in campus housing if necessary)
  • Mid-Fall Break (previously, Oct. 16, 2020) will be eliminated (though the Sept. 7 Labor Day holiday will occur as scheduled)
  • New Student Orientation, Move-In, and Wilderness Based Orientation (WBO), accordingly, have revised dates earlier in August 

For specifics regarding new orientation, move-in, and WBO days--and many other specifics related to Western Strong: Ensuring Campus Safety fall preparedness--visit our Your Questions—Answered page.

Summer 2020 Campus Activities

Summer 2020 Campus Housing, Dining, and Facilities

Students residing in campus must contact Residence Life staff before entering campus; failure to do so could lead to denial of your request to return to on-campus housing. More detail on this available under Campus Housing on this page.

Mad Jack's Cafe in the University Center opened for grab-and-go meals effective June 1, and Mountaineer 20, 40 and 80 meal plans will be available for summer 2020. To purchase a summer meal plan, call Residence Life at 970.943.2101.

At this time, campus facilities can only be accessed by swipe card for individuals previously granted access to a particular facility. Individuals in campus buildings must wear masks in any common spaces outside private offices. We will update these protocols this summer as public health guidance warrants.

Statement of Personal Responsibility

To remain Western Strong, we must rise together to overcome new challenges. As we reopen campus for Fall, we all have critical responsibilities to ensure the health and welfare of our friends and neighbors. Please help us do so by: 

  • Being personally accountable for your own health: Maintain proper hygiene and social distancing, limit group sizes, and self-isolate if you have flu-like symptoms 
  • Taking actions to safeguard the health of Western community members: Wear face coverings in public, and take extra care around vulnerable (immunodeficient, age-65+) individuals 
  • Being alert to situations that threaten campus health: Make staff aware of clearly symptomatic individuals, stay abreast of evolving Gunnison County health conditions, and take special care as flu season arrives 

We will have an outstanding semester together if You, Me, and We do what is needed of us. Thank you for keeping Western Strong.

State of Colorado and Gunnison County public health orders

Western adheres to state and local Safer At Home guidelines advocated by Colorado Gov. Jared Polis and Gunnison County Public Health Director Joni Reynolds. These guidelines change frequently, so please refer to the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment and Gunnison County Health and Human Services pages for most current information.

If you have symptoms:

  • Submit the Gunnison County Self-Report Form. 
  • If symptoms worsen later, call the Gunnison County Health Hotline at 970.641.7660. 
  • If you are a Western student, notify Dr. Abel Chavez. If you are a Western faculty or staff member, notify your supervisor.

How to help

The Western Colorado University Foundation has relaunched the Western CARES (Critical Aid Relief Emergency Support) Fund. The fund will support students who need assistance with anything from internet access, to housing, to transportation. If you are inspired to support our students with a donation, please give at this link.


Do you have a question on a topic not listed here? Visit this page!