President Jackson reminds students to follow guidelines amidst Labor Day weekend

Sarah Mead

Staff Writer

smead@murraystate.edu

President Bob Jackson reminded students to keep the Racer Safe and Healthy Safety Guidelines in mind during Labor Day weekend at the Student Government Association meeting on Sept. 2.

“This is a long weekend and I want to thank you in advance for adhering to all the guidelines, wearing masks, making good choices and doing all of the things I send you emails on regularly,” Jackson said. “This environment we are in, none of us chose to be here, but we are. We are going to make the very best of it and as good a semester as we can possibly have.”

Jackson said he and the heads of other Kentucky universities have been in conversations to keep Governor Andy Beshear updated with COVID-19 cases on campuses. Because of the long lag time between testing and reporting, oftentimes numbers are referencing the cases contracted the week from before.

“Everyone is trying to figure out how to update their information on a more regular basis and get good data,” Jackson said. “Everyone’s being totally transparent in regard to what’s happening on campus.”

Up-to-date COVID-19 counts can be found on the Murray State Racer Restart website or at TheNews.org. The University and the Calloway County Health Department currently update these numbers every Monday and are working to increase the updates to twice a week.

Jackson also warned the current precautions on campus will be permanent for the foreseeable future. Until a vaccine can be created for COVID-19, all campus activities will be heavily monitored. Students should be prepared to continue social distancing, wearing masks and following all University guidelines.

“This is not going to go away in the next weeks or months,” Jackson said. “It’s going to be here until there’s a vaccine and we’re still months away from that. Bear with us, hang in there and be patient. I know how hard it is on you guys.”

Jackson also shared that many factors contribute to determining if students will be staying on campus. 

“There are a number of things we look at each and every day to determine the health, safety and well being of this campus,” Jackson said.

Jackson plans for students to be on campus for the immediate future and hopes campus will remain open until the end of the semester. The successes and failures of this semester will determine the future of the spring semester, such as setting a return date for after winter break.

SGA meets via Zoom every Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. The Zoom link can be found here.