Rockers Return to Campus Plan

Reuniting Rockers for a Safe On-Campus Experience 

We are welcoming students back to campus for the Fall 2020 semester. 

Our Rockers Return Plan is informed by public health guidance and ideas from our task force of students, faculty and staff to keep our community safe, ensure a quality academic experience, and allow us to continue developing world-class engineers and scientists. 

Check these resources for regular updates: 

Ready Campus for Rockers Return

  • Establishing guidelines, prevention and mitigation capabilities, and testing and tracing practices to provide a safe and healthy campus
  • Incorporating social distancing protocols to accommodate students, faculty and staff in classrooms, labs and office spaces
  • Training students, faculty and staff on recommended public health and safety guidelines
  • Staying informed of state and local health and safety, as well as CDC guidelines
  • Being ready to adapt as needed to COVID-19 circumstances 

Deliver Flexible Academic Instruction 

  • Adjusting the Fall 2020 semester schedule:
    • Classes begin on August 19
    • Forgo holiday weekends (Labor Day, Native American Day, Veterans Day), turning these days into class days
    • Classes end on November 24, followed by Thanksgiving break from Nov. 25-29, followed by two non-class days to prepare for final exams which will take place online Dec. 2-8
  • Providing a course delivery mix:  in-person, hybrid (in-person and online), and completely online
  • Expanding lab accessibility for research to continue
  • Upgrading internet connections and bandwidth and online classroom technology
  • Training faculty on best practices for online course delivery for a highly interactive, supportive and effective online experience 

Align Resources for Student Success 

  • No tuition increase for all students
  • Adjusting living and dining spaces including accommodations for potential quarantine needs
  • Increasing WiFi bandwidth in the residence halls to provide a positive online class experience
  • Providing student group gatherings that allow for in-person and online participation 



Access to flexible academic instruction, campus life and support services.

Current Students


Faculty & Staff

Information and resources for faculty and staff who work on campus.

Learn More


Health & Safety

Information and resources for your health and safety to reduce the risk of exposure.

Learn More

Rockers Return Pledge 

Being a part of the Hardrocker community means that each of us must take extraordinary steps to stay well and persistently protect each other, on campus and in the community. To stay #HardrockerStrong, I pledge to take responsibility for my own health, the protection of others, and keep the South Dakota Mines community safe from spread of COVID-19. 

Hardrocker Pledge - I pledge to:

Protect Myself

  • Monitor for the symptoms of COVID-19 and report to a medical professional if I experience fever of 100.4 F (38 C) or higher, dry cough, difficulty breathing, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat or loss of taste or smell
  • Wash my hands often with soap and water or use hand sanitizer
  • Make physical and mental wellness a priority

Protect Others

  • Maintain appropriate social distancing, especially in classroom settings or the presence of older members of the community
  • Stay home if I feel ill or after exposure to someone who is ill or has tested positive for COVID-19
  • Wear an appropriate face mask and other protective gear as recommended by the university
  • Be positive, attentive, and helpful to anyone around who may be in need of support

Protect the Rocker Community

  • Keep my clothing, belongings, personal spaces, and shared common spaces clean
  • Participate in testing and contact tracing as needed to preserve the wellness of the community
  • Carefully observe instructional signs and follow directions

Used with permission from 

Informational Resources

If you believe you may have been exposed to COVID-19 and you are experiencing symptoms, call your local healthcare provider.

If you are in Rapid City, call COVID-19 triage center at 1-800-279-1466 (available from 7:00am – 11pm). 

South Dakota Mines is committed to being a diverse and inclusive community and supports all members of the university. COVID-19 affects all people regardless of age, background or area in which they live. As a STEM university, we set a high bar for our students, faculty and staff. Biased behaviors, stereotyping and discrimination are not acceptable. The university inclusion and diversity statement can be found here. Those who experience harassment or discrimination on campus can report it here.