Important Information

The following section will be used to communicate important information pertaining to the return to campus during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please continue to check this area of the website on a regular basis.


SDSU Offices Open December 31, 2020

The Board of Regents previously approved a compressed fall calendar with three holidays - Labor Day (September 7), Native American Day (October 12) and Veterans Day (November 11) designated as class days. The holidays are being observed on December 28, 29, and 30. South Dakota State University offices will be open December, 31, 2020. Supervisors should work with their employees to ensure office coverage. Employees may request leave for December 31, 2020 through normal processes. Information about this schedule is available on our Frequently Asked Questions page. In addition, Governor Noem and the Board of Regents designated November 27 and December 24, 2020 as administrative leave days.  Please contact the Office of Human Resources with questions regarding time and leave at 688-4128.

COVID-19 Testing Open for Students

South Dakota State University takes the health and safety of our students seriously. To that end, we are opening the SDSU student testing site in Brookings to all SDSU students free of charge. The testing process will remain the same, but students do not need an invite to be tested. Testing is voluntary.

For additional information, please read the COVID-19 Testing Open for Students release.

Spring 2021 Semester to Proceed as Planned

The South Dakota Board of Regents agreed to maintain a spring semester calendar of 77 class days for the six public universities, with the academic term beginning Monday, Jan. 11, 2021, and concluding Friday, May 7, 2021.

Read the full spring 2021 semester calendar release
View the 2020-2021 Academic Calendar

Faculty Senate Town Hall Meeting Set for Sept. 11, 2020

Faculty Senate will host a Town Hall on COVID-19 Testing at SDSU on Friday (9/11) from 12pm – 1pm (CST), via Zoom; the meeting will be recorded. Information for joining the Zoom meeting is provided at the end of this message.

The Town Hall meeting will include opening remarks from panelists followed by a 30-minute Q&A session moderated by Faculty Senate President Jennifer Anderson. If possible, please send questions to Jennifer Anderson prior to the meeting.

The following topics will be addressed by the Town Hall panelists:

  • Overview of SDSU’s COVID-19 testing strategy
  • Role of testing symptomatic people
  • Role of testing asymptomatic people
  • Federal approvals and rigor associated with lab testing and certifications
  • Role of Student Health in logistics of testing
  • Coordination of legal concerns such as privacy and DOH procedures

Phone one-tap: US: +16699006833,,97813418983# or +12532158782,,97813418983#
Meeting URL:
Meeting ID: 978 1341 8983
Passcode: 284121

Read the Faculty Senate Town Hall Invitation for additional information.


Campus Town Hall Meeting

August 18, 2020

President Dunn and members of the JacksRBack Task Force answer a variety of questions individuals have asked heading into the new academic year.

Regents Adopt Tiered Approach to Face Covering Protocols

President Dunn sitting in the Student Union with students

The South Dakota Board of Regents has adopted a tiered approach to face covering requirements for its six public universities when the fall academic term begins Aug. 19.

Wednesday’s action creates a framework under which the board and its universities are positioned to react quickly to adjust campus operations whenever necessary. Brian Maher, the regents’ executive director and CEO, characterized it as “responding in a practical way to the changing COVID-19 landscape at campuses and within their respective communities.”

To begin fall semester operations on the campuses, the regents agreed to require face coverings in all public indoor spaces on campus (Level 3). This action will be reviewed 30 days after the start of the fall academic term.
The board’s protocol, which applies to all students, staff, faculty and campus visitors, provides for four differentiated levels of response: Level 1, Level 2, Level 3 and Level 4.

Read the Regents Adopt Tiered Approach to Face Covering Protocols release.

Read the SDBOR COVID-19 Face Covering Protocol document.

Campus Community Forums

The Brookings Area Chamber of Commerce hosted a series of Campus Community forums this summer. These forums were designed to update community members, students, families and key stakeholders about plans and processes being implemented as they pertain to operations at SDSU and throughout the city this summer and into the fall. Forums were moderated by Andi Fouberg, Chair of the Brookings Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and took place from 5-6 p.m. CST.

Visit the Campus Community Forums page for additional information as well as video coverage of the community forums.

Miller Wellness Center: Updated Hours

Patron wearing a cloth face covering while on a bike at the Wellness Center

The Wellness Center began its phased reopening June 1, 2020.

As part of a gradual reestablishment plan, the SDSU Wellness Center will be reopening in a phased approach for SDSU students and members. Limited hours began Monday, June 1, 2020, with additional amenities becoming available on July 20, 2020.

Our 2020 - 2021 Academic Hours began on Saturday August, 15. Operating hours will be:

  • Monday - Thursday: 5 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. - 11 p.m.
  • Friday: 5 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. - 10 p.m.
  • Saturday: 7 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. - 8 p.m.
  • Sunday: 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. - 10 p.m.

For information on area-specific hours, please visit the link below:

Hours of Operation

Precautions are being enacted to provide a safe environment so our members have an opportunity to resume an active lifestyle. Cleaning will be conducted during regular intervals throughout the day, as well as deep cleaning during our daily 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. facility closures. Wellness Center staff will follow CDC, as well as American College of Sports Medicine and American College Health Association guidelines.

For guidelines and expectations for patrons and staff as well as additional reopening information, please visit the Wellness Center COVID-19 Response & Updates site.

SDSU Alumni and SDSU Foundation Reopened June 29, 2020

Guests, Vendors, and Service Providers:

The Lohr building reopened for guests and visitors on June 29, 2020. The main entrances for the Lohr Building will be unlocked (the Alumni Atrium doors will remain locked with appropriate signage). 

All guests, visitors, vendors and service providers will be required to sign in at a welcome station in the front entry. Optional masks and hand sanitizer will be provided at the sign-in station as well.

SDSU Meat Lab Reopened June 19, 2020


Thursday - Friday: 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. through Aug. 15 (Retail Sales)
Monday - Friday: 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. through Aug. 15 (Slaughter and Processing)
Monday - Friday: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. beginning Aug. 17
Monday - Friday: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. post-COVID-19

Entrance/Exit Procedures

When customers come for product pickup, a staff member will deliver meat products and take payments or escort customers into the retail store front for credit card payment.

Tours and Groups

Tours and group visits to the Production areas will be suspended until further notice.

Groups that come for retail meat products will be limited to the inside space at the capacity of one customer group at a time.

Guidelines and Rules

The SDSU Meat Lab will be operating on required staffing to accomplish pig slaughters, processing and retail sales in curb side pickup manner. The SDSU Meat Lab will accept phone and email orders to reduce our contact with customers. Staff members will follow the guidelines for meat and poultry processing worker as outlined here when fabricating products and filling customer orders.

SDSU Dairy Bar Reopened June 15, 2020

Students wearing face masks while visiting the Dairy Bar

The SDSU Dairy Bar reopened for business June 15. The facility will be open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday through Aug. 14.

When arriving, customers are encouraged to use the doors marked for entrance/exit, follow all signage and practice social distancing.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there will be a limited seating capacity of 25 customers. Customers are suggested to carry out purchases and to use cashless payment options.

The SDSU Dairy Bar will follow food preparation and service guidance set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the South Dakota Department of Health.

McCrory Gardens Reopened June 10, 2020

McCrory Gardens opened at 10 a.m. June 10. The gardens will be open Wednesdays through Sundays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. To ensure a quality visit, the last admission will be at 5:30 p.m.

The gardens will be closed Mondays and Tuesdays to allow cleaning of the numerous contact points.

When arriving, visitors are encouraged to use the Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant openers for doors, follow the signage and practice social distancing. Certain doors might be propped open to reduce touch points. Visitors are encouraged to wear cloth face coverings. However, the face coverings will not be required to tour the gardens nor provided to visitors.

Visitors will enter and exit the gardens through the McCrory Gardens Education and Visitor Center. The center’s lobby will be limited to 20 individuals at one time. Upon paying admission, visitors will need to provide a name and phone number in case a need for future contact arises. For additional information, please read the McCrory Gardens press release

Dirks named Public Health Specialist

South Dakota State University President Barry Dunn announced that Laura Dirks will serve as the university’s public health specialist, a new position that will play a critical role in helping the university operate during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dirks will be responsible for working with SDSU and Brookings community leadership to create, implement and communicate systems and strategies to monitor, promote and maintain individual and community health. She will develop programs and plans related to education, assessment, public health and policy that supports SDSU’s planning efforts and engages the Brookings health care system and community leaders. Read the full news release on the new public health specialist.

SDSU announces “Drop-n-Go” option for students moving onto campus

South Dakota State University’s Office of Residential Life announced initial move-in plans for students who plan to live on-campus during the 2020-21 academic year. The plans include a “Drop-n-Go” option for students to bring their belongings to campus July 24 - Aug. 7. Read the release for additional move-in information.

Jackrabbit Central Opens in Brookings

South Dakota State University’s Jackrabbit Central location in downtown Brookings opened Thursday, June 4. The store is scheduled to be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays. The store will be open for high-risk customers from 10 a.m. - 11 a.m. each day. Read the news release for additional information regarding Jackrabbit Central's opening.

2020 Fall Academic Calendar Adjustment

The South Dakota Board of Regents announced adjustments to the 2020 Fall Academic Calendar. Instruction will now begin Aug. 19 and on-campus instruction will be completed by Thanksgiving. Labor Day, Native American Day and Veterans Day will be used as class days to accommodate the 70-class day schedule. The university will work to plan programming to appropriately celebrate and recognize those holidays.

The decision was made among the regents and the six presidents of the state’s public higher-education institutions in collaboration with South Dakota Department of Health guidance, the state epidemiologist and other health care providers.

Three identifying factors enforced the decision based on keeping students within communities and avoiding travel to limit any spread of COVID-19 from other areas, the impact of the traditional flu season and the potential for a second wave of COVID-19.

The university's full news release is available here.

2020-21 Academic Calendar