February 27, 2020 - Important information about coronavirus

Dear University Community,

As news about the coronavirus, or COVID-19, continues to emerge from across the globe, I want to share with you some important information to stay safe and support others.

While Missouri continues to have no confirmed coronavirus cases, officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that clusters of infection are likely in the U.S. and have already occurred in Italy, Iran, Japan and South Korea. At UMSL, we’re working closely with our partners in public health to monitor the spread of the virus and are prepared to respond swiftly if cases occur here in Missouri.

As many in our community plan to travel for spring break, we recommend that you monitor news sources and follow any travel restrictions that are put in place. Currently, travel to CDC Warning Level 3 countries – China and South Korea – is restricted by the U.S. government, and no new university-sponsored travel will be approved to China or South Korea until further notice. We will continue to monitor conditions in CDC Alert Level 2 countries – Italy, Iran and Japan – affected by the coronavirus.

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. One of the best ways to prevent the spread of germs is to avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and to engage in proper hand hygiene. If you feel sick and think you may have been exposed to the coronavirus, please call ahead before visiting your health care provider. This will allow your health care provider to take steps to keep other people from being infected or exposed.

We encourage our entire community to be vigilant, and it’s just as important that we face this issue together while remaining true to our core values as a university. We encourage you to find ways to show respect and care for each other. As noted by the CDC, people – including those of Asian descent – who have not recently traveled to China or been in contact with a person who has a confirmed or suspected case of the virus are not at greater risk of acquiring and spreading COVID-19 compared to any other individuals.

Our hearts go out to all those affected by the virus. Your health and well-being is our top priority, and we will continue to provide guidance as the situation evolves. I’ve included information below with links to additional university resources.


Kristin Sobolik
Interim Chancellor and Provost

University Resources

  • Student health services: Health Services – 314-516-5671
  • Student services and support: Student Affairs – 314-516-5211
  • International student services/study abroad: UMSL Global – 314-516-5753
  • Questions regarding university-sponsored travel: Faculty: Academic Affairs – 314-516-5371, Staff: Human Resources – 314-516-5805
  • Equal employment/educational opportunity: Human Resources – 314-516-4538
  • Guideline on student or other participant international travel or study abroad: CRR 210.070