WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — MSU administrators have placed a new policy that requires students, faculty and staff wear masks in campus facilities.
This goes into effect July 6 as MSU officials prepare to head back to the classroom for the fall semester.
In order to return to in-person classes, officials said this step is crucial.
“Really, people have got to get used to wearing masks all the time here,” MSU Texas President Suzanne Shipley said.
“This is one of those things people don’t understand, it’s kind of a ‘you do you and I’ll do me,’ well if you’re not wearing a mask it increases the likelihood that there will be higher levels of COVID and circulation,” MSU Texas Medical Director Dr. Keith Williamson said.
Students, faculty and staff have to wear a face-covering inside campus buildings
“When you’re talking to someone they’re spitting at you,” MSU student and lifeguard at the Bruce and Graciela Redwine Student Wellness Center Bridget Reilly said. “I think I’d feel a little bit safer if school does go back in person, I’d feel safer just walking around with other people wearing masks.”
Shipley said school will be back in-person come Fall 2020.
“Dogonit, we want to get going so we have no plans whatsoever to defer beginning in fall, but that’s why we’re wearing these things, we want to start safely, we want to cut this curve that’s re-appeared in Wichita Falls,” Shipley said.
Students can take them off when in their dorm or eating and drinking.
Faculty can when in their office, in a private workspace or if they can remain 10-feet from students in the classroom.
“If we followed 6-foot guidelines, for example, one of my classrooms would only seat four people including me, so I’m glad we jumped ahead on this,” MSU Mass Communication Associate Professor Bradley Wilson said. “I’m a little upset we had to do it, I wish we could just say follow the CDC guidelines.”
The Bruce and Graciela Redwine Student Wellness Center will operate the way it has been, under the governor’s direction.
“Inside workers have to wear masks when they’re cleaning and what have you, but outside we’re not wearing masks,” Reilly said.
It may not be required in Wichita Falls, but MSU is taking its own approach.
The last week of classes and finals will be fully online for MSU.
“It is important that we all do our part, not only for ourselves, our friends, and our families, but also for our more vulnerable classmates, faculty, and staff,” Shipley said. “A safe campus environment can be achieved and maintained only by working together. Thank you for your attention to and support of this important measure.”