Due to concerns related to the potential spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), Missouri University of Science and Technology has canceled all university-sponsored events associated with the annual St. Pat’s Celebration and the university’s Teaching and Learning Technology Conference.
In addition, Phelps Health reported today that a patient is being isolated for COVID-19 testing.
The cancellation includes the St. Pat’s Parade and outdoor concert on Saturday, March 14, as well as other events, beginning with today’s court arrival.
“Canceling events associated with one of our university’s most celebrated traditions was a very difficult decision,” says Dr. Mo Dehghani, Missouri S&T chancellor. “But the well-being and safety of our Missouri S&T family and the Rolla community is our highest concern and of utmost importance.
“Although there are no confirmed cases of the coronavirus on campus or in the Rolla area, we cannot take the risk of exposing thousands of people at events that attract visitors from all over the state – even from around the nation,” Dehghani says. “Therefore, we are canceling the events.”
Dr. Dennis Goodman, director of student health and Missouri S&T’s chief medical officer, consulted with Phelps-Maries Health Department Director Ashley Wann before recommending the cancellation.
The university is also evaluating moving classes online and restricting travel in light of the rapid changes with COVID-19.
The following St. Pat’s Celebration events are now canceled:
The St. Pat’s Celebration at Missouri S&T began in 1908 and has been held continuously except for a few years during World War II. The event honors St. Patrick as the “patron saint of engineers.” As part of the 112-year-old tradition, the university does not hold classes on the Thursday and Friday before the annual parade. The practice of dismissing classes Thursday and Friday will continue.
“Safety first” encouraged
University officials discourage students, faculty and staff from hosting visitors during the remainder of the week and encourage all to protect themselves and others from the potential spread of respiratory diseases – not just coronavirus, but also the cold and flu.
“Safety first,” says Goodman. “As we do every year during cold and flu season, we advise people to follow the best practices to avoid the spread of respiratory disease.”
To protect yourself and others, Goodman recommends you:
More information about Missouri S&T’s response to the COVID-19 situation is available at coronavirus.mst.edu.