Bethany Lutheran College President Dr. Gene Pfeifer announced plans for the College to reopen for on-campus, in-person learning and other activities on January 10, 2021. He, and Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Theodore Manthe, outlined the plans in letters to employees and students dated December 10, 2020. The College will continue operations in 2021 in an elevated risk readiness format, which will require mandated mitigation strategies designed to lower the incidences of COVID-19 outbreaks on the campus.
Pfeifer asked all those employees and students returning to campus in January to limit social contact during the latter part of the semester break. He said, “Students, faculty, and staff are strongly encouraged to ‘lay low’ or keep to a ‘self-imposed quarantine’ period prior to their return to campus.”
Bethany has tentatively scheduled COVID-19 testing on campus for Monday, January 4 and Monday, January 11 for all students and employees. The January 4 date will be for those students and employees living in the Mankato region, and the January 11 date is for those students returning to campus on January 10 when College-owned residence halls reopen.
The College will again offer classes using the HyFlex delivery system which, in most cases, allows for in-person leaning in a masked and physically-distanced classroom environment. For those students unable to be on campus, or preferring to learn in an online format, most classes will be taught in a real-time, online platform.
Pfeifer also stressed that these reopening and mitigation plans will be reviewed as the guidelines and mandates from the State of Minnesota are updated during the coming weeks.
Pfeifer concluded his letter stating, “The College will monitor and adjust plans and mitigation efforts based on the transmission situation both on campus and in our community. The goal is that Bethany will be able to remain open for in-person learning for the entire semester.”