Message to Campus Community (March 12, 10 a.m.)

The following message was sent by the president's office to the Missouri State community on March 12, 2020 at 10:08 a.m.

Missouri State University is not closing any of the Missouri State campuses at this time, but here’s what you need to know

Missouri State has been closely monitoring COVID-19. We have provided several updates during the last several weeks regarding the situation that included actions taken by the university.

Please remember that most people who get COVID-19 have very mild or no symptoms and most recover on their own. Those at higher risk are older adults and people with chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and lung disease.

None of the Missouri State University campuses nor Southwest Missouri have a confirmed case of COVID-19. However, our concern is and always will be the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff.

Spring break begins next week. We feel it is necessary to prepare in the event we need to take additional steps to mitigate and slow the potential spread of the virus and to help protect the Missouri State-West Plains campuses in West Plains and Mountain Grove and the West Plains and Mountain Grove communities.

Students, take your books and computer with you when you leave for spring break

We will continue to assess whether we should temporarily move away from in-person delivery of classes and will provide an updated status no later than Thursday, March 19. This information will be sent via email and a Missouri State Alert. 

A limited number of laptops are available for check out from the Garnett Library for students without access to technology.

The COVID-19 website for the West Plains campus will continue to be updated with the latest available information.

Faculty should start planning alternative delivery methods

As requested by Dean Dennis Lancaster in an email on Monday of this week, faculty members who teach a face-to-face class should start planning how to continue instruction through alternate methods if the university decides to move away from in-person delivery of classes.

This may be through use of Blackboard, Zoom, email or other means of communication.  Academic leadership will be communicating with you to discuss available options.

More information about resources available for alternative delivery methods and considerations is posted on the MSU-WP COVID-19 website. Faculty members should monitor their email for additional information from the office of academic affairs.

Staff - Alternate work arrangements

Until otherwise notified, staff should continue to report to work as usual.

Students, faculty and staff with underlying health conditions that put you at greater risk

We recognize that some members of campus may be at a higher risk of infection and may possibly need special accommodations because they are immunocompromised.  Individuals who have underlying health conditions that place them at heightened risk and wish to discuss possible accommodations should proceed as follows:

  • Students, please contact the academic affairs office, 417-255-7272
  • Faculty, please work with your department chair, division chair, or the Dean’s office.
  • Staff, please work with your immediate supervisor

United States imposes additional travel restrictions from Europe

As many of you may know, President Trump announced last night that the United States is restricting travel from Europe. While there is still uncertainty about how this will be implemented, there is a possibility that any U.S. citizens who travel to Europe after Friday will be placed in a 14-day quarantine when they return.

Missouri State has previously issued travel restrictions to several countries and has urged our community to avoid travel to areas with high numbers of COVID-19 cases. Information about travel restrictions will be updated on the COVID-19 Travel Restrictions webpage.

Study away

Due to the additional travel restrictions, the university has cancelled all spring break study away programs.


As you know, COVID-19 has created a very fluid landscape that is rapidly changing. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention offers tips to on how to prevent getting the illness.

Have a safe and healthy spring break.

Clifton M. Smart, III