Dear Roadrunners, 

I hope you read Wednesday’s Early Bird and saw the fantastic video produced by the University Communications and Marketing team documenting Metropolitan State University of Denver’s two-year Covid-19 journey. On this date in 2020, we made the difficult but necessary decision to close the Auraria Campus and move to remote learning and operations. While I don’t want to downplay the severity of this pandemic or the pain and struggle it has caused many within our community, I do believe we are a more resilient and even more mission-driven University than ever before.  

Today, the Covid-19 situation has stabilized significantly. MSU Denver is no longer in constant maintenance and decision-making mode, which means that, hopefully, I will have less to report. These articles may become less necessary and useful, so please don’t be surprised if my campuswide communications become less frequent. 

At the moment, how you feel about the future of Covid-19 might depend a lot on where you live. Here in Colorado, the state is rolling back its mass-vaccination sites, 11 counties had dropped to 0% positivity and on Sunday we celebrated the first day in two years with no new Covid hospitalizations. Zero. That is a huge milestone. 

On campus, our testing site had just one positive test for the week that ended Sunday and counted just three off-campus positive tests. We’ve also successfully gone 10 days as a mask-optional environment. 

In other parts of the world, however, the situation is quite different. We are keeping a close eye on emerging Covid-19 strains in the United Kingdom and on surges in Europe, China and Hong Kong. Additionally, we will continue to seek guidance from local, state and federal public-health officials. As I’ve continued to state, should the Covid-19 situation change locally, MSU Denver may need to reinstate certain health and safety protocols. All changes will be clearly and promptly communicated to the University community. 

For now, thank you all for acting respectfully and responsibly by continuing to carry a mask with you and to mask when asked. If you have any feedback on any of the University’s current health and safety policies, including the vaccine mandate, you can share it at [email protected] 

Other reminders and resources:


Larry Sampler 

Vice president for Administration, Finance and Facilities and chief operating officer
Roadrunners Safe Return Committee