LSU is providing free masks to students, faculty and staff to promote safety on campus in compliance with the LSU Presidential Directive on COVID-19 Safety.
Students can pick up a mask at the UREC front desk or the Olinde Career Center during business hours. Masks are limited to one per student. The directive specifies that masks must be properly worn over the mouth and nose at all times when inside buildings or when 6 feet of social distancing cannot be maintained.
Vice President for Student Affairs Jeremiah Shinn noted that while the mask mandate and COVID-19 precautions are new to everyone, it's important that students are ready to comply when classes begin.
"We need and expect cooperation with the face covering and physical distancing requirements from day one," Shinn said.
Before the beginning of the school year, Interim President Thomas Galligan said he is optimistic students will voluntarily follow the mask mandate in order to keep their fellow students and community safe. But, if necessary, the policy will be strictly enforced.
If a student arrives to class without a mask, the faculty member in charge will gently remind them of the mandate. If they do not or cannot comply, they will be asked to leave the room and return at a time when they can wear a mask or face covering.
According to the directive, if the student refuses to cooperate, it constitutes a violation of the LSU Code of Student Conduct and will be addressed through the Office of Student Advocacy and Accountability.
"We want to give people every opportunity to cooperate, but we're not going to do so at the risk of the health and safety of our community," Shinn said. "We don't expect perfection but we do expect students to be in cooperation with the presidential directive as soon as they're reminded."
LSU is committed to providing an on-campus experience that can continue throughout the fall semester. Shinn noted the increasing cleaning protocols LSU has implemented upon reopening.
"We feel confident that we're providing a very safe, clean environment for students," Shinn said
Efforts toward the health and safety of students extends to not just on-campus behavior, but activities students engage in outside of the classroom. Shinn said there are three basic guidelines students should practice at all times.
"If students are wearing face coverings, washing their hands frequently and thoroughly, maintaining physical distance and avoiding large gatherings on and off campus [...] we're confident that we're going to have a good semester where we keep each other healthy and safe," Shinn said.