Coronavirus Updates | Bismarck State College

to the top of the page
Home Page
  BSC will deliver all classes online for the remainder of the spring semester.
Coronavirus Updates
Coronavirus Updates -

Coronavirus Updates

  Home  »  News »  

Coronavirus Updates

Bismarck State College is relying on the guidance of ND Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to plan the college’s response to coronavirus (COVID-19). The health of our community is our top priority.
 
This is a constantly changing situation, and the college will post all updates here. Students and employees will receive email communication with additional relevant details. 
 
In this time of uncertainty, the college is grateful for the strength, patience and understanding shown by our campus and larger community.
 

Student resources for online learning

Blackboard
All Bismarck State College departments and faculty have determined the best method for teaching their particular programs and classes remotely. BSC uses the Blackboard (Bb) Learning Management System for remote learning and most instruction will be delivered using Blackboard. A section has been created for every course and all students and faculty have been enrolled. Your instructor will be in contact with you regarding expectations during this period.

By clicking the button below, you will be directed to the BSC Blackboard login site.
 
  Blackboard Login    



1. Log in using your NDUS credentials and password.



2. You are now be in the Blackboard site.




3. Click on the MY BSC tab in the top right corner

4. Click on the course you would like to access. Your instructor will provide you with further information regarding what lessons to complete.

5. For assistance with Blackboard, please email bsc.distlearn@bismarckstate.edu
Student FAQ

BSC Student FAQ 

(Updated: 03/30/2020)


This FAQ is updated frequently. Check back often for answers to your questions. 
 

ACADEMIC QUESTIONS 
 

Q: Fall 2020 Current Student Registration begins April 1. How do I register or get help registering if campus is closed to the public and operating as a virtual campus? 

A: Fall Registration will be done virtually.  

Q: Where do I go for help accessing online courses? 

A: Your instructors will be in contact with you regarding expectations during this period. We anticipate most instructors will use Blackboard, BSC’s learning management system (LMS).

To learn more about how to access online classes go to bismarckstate.edu/coronavirus under thebStudent Resources for Online Learning header, click on Blackboard.

For additional BSC Blackboard assistance, email bsc.distlearn@bismarckstate.edu  

If you are having trouble accessing your courses, email your instructor.
 

Q: When will on-campus classes resume?  

A: Spring 2020 classes will no longer be held on campus. BSC classes will be delivered online beginning Thursday, March 26 through the last day of the semester Friday, May 15, 2020. Your instructors will be in contact with you via email or Blackboard regarding course expectations once classes resume on Thursday, March 26.
 

Q: Is tutoring still available now that all classes are online only? 

A: Tutoring is available online.  The online tutoring schedule is available at https://bismarckstate.edu/academics/academicresources/tutoring/services/   

Q: Are student accessibility services still available now that all classes are online only? 

A: Student Accessibility Services are available for students needing to request accommodations. Students with disabilities can get more information by emailing bsc.accessibility@bismarckstate.edu or by calling 701-224-5671 (M-F, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.)


Q: What will happen to classes in programs that are almost completely hands-on like art, lineworker, carpentry, auto collision, etc? 

A: Decisions regarding hands-on technical courses, labs, studio time, ensembles and the like are still being determined. Students affected by these decisions will receive more information from their instructors. 


Q: I don’t have internet at home – how can I take online classes? 

A: Students are asked to alert their instructors if they don’t have the resources to complete their classes online and they will connect you with the BSC Information Technology (IT) department to help you access the resources you need. 
 

Q: I don’t have a computer at home. What are my options? 

A: A temporary computer lab with four computers is set up in the BSC Student Union for student use only. The computers will have course-specific software students and printing is available. The BSC Student Union hours are 7:30 AM to 6:30 PM. The computer lab in the BSC Library will be available during library hours

Students are asked to alert their instructors if they don’t have the resources to complete their classes online and they will connect you with the BSC Information Technology (IT) department to help you access the resources you need. 


Q: Can I meet with people on campus face to face? 

A: BSC is restricting public access to most buildings on campus, but the college will continue to provide academic and student support services throughout the end of the semester via telephone and email. 


Q: Will Summer 2020 registration still begin on March 23? 

A: No changes have been made to registration dates or starting dates for our summer or fall sessions at this time. We will keep you updated should that change. 

BSC Summer Registration opens Monday, March 23, 2020. All registration and advising will occur remotely. Please review your academic requirements report in CampusConnection and contact your advisor via telephone or email for assistance in selecting classes.

BSC Fall Advising and Registration for current students begins April 1. More information on this will be coming soon. 


Q: Will the BSC Bookstore be open if I need to purchase textbooks for a class? 

A: Books purchased from the BSC Bookstore will be available for pickup from 7:30 AM to 4 PM (M-F) at Mystic Java only, next to the BSC Bookstore. Students are encourage to order books online from the BSC Bookstore at bismarckstate.edu/bookstore. Shipping is FREE for all orders.


Q: What student resources are available while BSC is operating as a virtual campus? 

A: BSC is restricting public access to most buildings on campus, but the college will continue to provide academic and student support services throughout the end of the semester via telephone, email and limited access to computer labs. 

  • Computer Labs:
    • Student Union – 4 computers available with course-specific software loaded, open 7:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m., M-F.
    • BSC Library Computer Lab – open to BSC and NDUS students, faculty and staff with school ID during library hours
  • Library:
    • Virtual campus library hours and services available here

Other services available:

 

ON-CAMPUS RESIDENT QUESTIONS 

 

Q: Do students who live on campus need to return home to take classes online? 

A: Students who currently live on campus are being asked to return home to finish their classes online. Exceptions are being made for students who need to remain living on campus for various reasons.

Students who live on campus must complete the mandatory housing form found in the Housing Self Service. Sign in and find the form under Application/Contracts. All students – whether moving out or staying on campus through the semester – must complete this form. 

Students should not enter a residence hall unless they have completed the necessary forms. Students who need to enter their residence hall and have not completed the forms are asked to notify BSC Student and Residence Life at 701-224-5464 or bsc.housing@bismarckstate.edu to schedule an appointment for admittance.  


Q: If students are returning home, how will they retrieve their personal belongings? 

A: Students who are currently living on campus that need to move out of their residence hall should contact BSC Student and Residence Life at bsc.housing@bismarckstate.edu to make the necessary arrangements to check out. 

Students who need to enter their residence hall are asked to notify BSC Student and Residence Life at 701-224-5464 or bsc.housing@bismarckstate.edu to schedule an appointment for admittance. Students should not enter a residence hall unless they have an appointment. 


Q: Will students who do not return to campus receive a refund for residence hall expenses and meal plans? 

A: BSC will provide prorated credits to students for unused housing and dining services. Credit amounts will be estimated at approximately 30% of billed and paid amounts; amounts may be prorated for students still residing in campus housing after April 10, 2020.  


Q: What services will still be available for students who will continue to live on campus? 

A: Services such as security, food service and housing for students residing on campus will continue and BSC employees will be physically present in these areas as long as there are students living in the residence halls. The BSC Student Union (Doors B, D and F) will be open 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. for those services. 

BSC Mystic Marketplace will be open to students living on campus. 
11 am–1 pm: Lunch Service/Grab & Go 
1–4:30 pm: Grab & Go 
4:30–6:30 pm: Supper Service/Grab & Go 
*All food service will be at the BSC Mystic Marketplace pick-up window only. The dining area will be closed and students are asked to take their meals back to their residence hall.

BSC Mystic Java will be open to students living on campus. 
7:30–11:30 am: Breakfast items will be available 

BSC Safety & Security will be working on campus. They can be reached at 701-224-2700. 


Q: What should students living on campus do if they think they’ve been exposed to the virus or if they get sick? 

A: Students who think they have been exposed COVID-19, have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or are feeling ill are asked to notify their residence hall staff or BSC Student and Residence Life at 701-224-5645 or bsc.housing@bismarckstate.edu immediately. The student should immediately quarantine/self-isolate in their room and will receive further guidance and assistance from BSC Student and Residence Life. 

 

 

EVENT QUESTIONS 

 

Q: Are any events happening on campus now? 

A: All events held on campus now through Sunday, May 3, have been postponed or canceled in order to help mitigate spread of the disease. This date could be extended if necessary due to the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation. 


Q: Will the BSC 2020 Commencement ceremony still take place? 

A: It was with very heavy hearts that Bismarck State College made the difficult decision to cancel our traditional 2020 BSC Commencement ceremony at the Bismarck Event Center because of the coronavirus pandemic. While an in-person commencement event can’t happen, we would like to officially recognize and celebrate you and your achievements in a new way.

BSC 2020 Virtual Commencement
Friday, May 15, 2020 at 2 p.m. (CST) at bismarckstate.edu.


A BSC 2020 Virtual Commencement Watch Party will be held at the same time on the BSC Facebook page allowing students, family, and friends to watch together and share congratulatory messages for BSC graduates. Watch for more details coming soon on the BSC website and the BSC Facebook page.

All Fall 2019, Spring 2020 and Summer 2020 graduates are encouraged to participate in the BSC 2020 Virtual Commencement. Details on how to participate have been emailed to all graduating students who have completed their Application for Degree. Students who have NOT completed their Application for Degree should do so here: bismarckstate.edu/applyforgraduation. Students must submit their Application for Degree by April 15 to participate in the BSC 2020 Virtual Commencement. Participation details will be emailed to you once your Application for Degree has been received and accepted. 


 

FINANCE QUESTIONS 


Q: What if I've lost my job and am struggling to pay my bill at BSC?  

A: While we ask that students make their best effort to pay their bills, BSC Student Finance will not apply late fees during the month of April.

  • Checkouts must be completed by April 10, 2020 at noon. For more information contact your residence hall coordinator or Student and Residence Life at 701.224.5464 or bsc.housing@bismarckstate.edu 
  • Please refer to your CampusConnection account to view your account changes. 
  • If you are due a refund, ensure your refund preference is set up in CampusConnection. Student Finance office processes refunds weekly.  
  • Contact us or refer to the Student Finance area of the BSC website for tips on setting up your refund preference. 
  • If you have any issues making payments, contact Student Finance at bsc.studentfinance@bismarckstate.edu and we will work with you. 
Virtual Campus Services Available
Campus buildings will not be open to the public and will remained locked during this time. BSC departments will work virtually with those who need to do business with those areas. Contact information for those areas is listed below:
 

BSC updates on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

March 30: BSC Student Update

Thank you for your efforts in working with BSC faculty and staff as we move through this challenging situation. The following updates are provided as the college continues to prioritize the health and safety of the campus community. 

 

RESIDENCE LIFE ACTION ITEMS & REFUNDS 

Refunds and Resident Hall and Meal Plan Credits: BSC will provide prorated credits to students for unused housing and dining services. Credit amounts will be estimated at approximately 30% of billed and paid amounts; amounts may be prorated for students still residing in campus housing after April 10, 2020.  
  • Please refer to your CampusConnection account to view your account changes. 
  • If you are due a refund, ensure your refund preference is set up in CampusConnection. Student Finance office processes refunds weekly.  
  • Contact us or refer to the Student Finance area of the BSC website for tips on setting up your refund preference. 
On-campus residents action required: Students who live on campus must complete the mandatory housing form found in the Housing Self Service. Sign in and find the form under Application/Contracts. All students – whether moving out or staying on campus through the semester – must complete this form. 
  • Checkouts must be completed by April 10, 2020 at noon. For more information contact your residence hall coordinator or Student and Residence Life at 701.224.5464 or bsc.housing@bismarckstate.edu 

 

STUDENT FINANCE 

No late fees applied in April: While we ask that students make their best effort to pay their bills, BSC Student Finance will not apply late fees during the month of April.

 

ACADEMICS 

As we continue into this this week of online/remote teaching and learning, students are expected to: 

  • Regularly check their BSC e-mail and course Blackboard shells for ongoing communications from their faculty. Faculty members will share their expectations for course assignments, participation and engagement. 
  • Meet expectations outlined by faculty during this time just as they would if the course were being held face-to-face. 

If you have specific questions about a course or assignment, we encourage you to contact your instructor. If you are encountering other difficulties related to this transition to online/remote learning (financial difficulties, technology barriers, personal concerns, etc.) we encourage you to contact the Mystic Advising & Counseling Center (MACC) at 701.224.5752 or bsc.advising@bismarckstate.edu or complete the Student General Concern Report at https://bismarckstate.edu/forms/GeneralConcernReport/ .   

Meeting with your advisor: Fall Registration will be done virtually.  

Academic Support 

EVENTS 

While plans have changed for an in-person Commencement, we are throwing a virtual event for our graduates! Join us for the BSC 2020 Virtual Commencement on Friday, May 15, 2020 at 2 p.m. (CST) at bismarckstate.edu. 
 
A BSC 2020 Virtual Commencement Watch Party will be held at the same time on the BSC Facebook page allowing students, family, and friends to watch together and share congratulatory messages for BSC graduates. More details coming soon! 

Details on how to participate have been emailed to all graduating students who have completed their Application for Degree. Students who have NOT completed their Application for Degree should do so here: bismarckstate.edu/applyforgraduation. Students must submit their Application for Degree by April 15 to participate in the BSC 2020 Virtual Commencement. Participation details will be emailed to you once your Application for Degree has been received and accepted. 
 

HAVE MORE QUESTIONS?

Go to the Student FAQ section at the top of this page.

 

March 25: BSC Student Update - Returning from Spring Break

Welcome back and welcome to the BSC Virtual Campus! 

As you dive into Spring semester fully online tomorrow, we want you to know that all of us at BSC – from President Skogen (see a message from him here), to your instructors, to the support staff on campus – are committed to your success during this unprecedented time.  

Make sure to reach out to your instructors with any questions or concerns and know that all the BSC services you expect – advising, counseling, tutoring and more – remain available to you in this virtual campus environment.   

Read on or go to bismarckstate.edu/coronavirus to access the following information and more.

 

Programs with Labs and Clinicals 
BSC is working diligently to move labs to a virtual setting. Where that isn’t possible, we are reviewing several scenarios that will ensure students learn the skills needed to earn their degrees. At this time, no labs will be held on campus. 

 

Blackboard 

To learn more about how to access online classes go to bismarckstate.edu/coronavirus. Under the Student Resources for Online Learning header, click on Blackboard. For additional BSC Blackboard assistance, email bsc.distlearn@bismarckstate.edu

 

Summer Registration

Summer registration opened Monday, March 23. All registration and advising will occur remotely. Review your academic requirements report in CampusConnection and contact your advisor via telephone or email for assistance in selecting classes. Fall advising and registration begins April 1. 

 

Room and Board Refunds 

Information regarding room and board refunds will be coming soon. 

 

BSC Virtual Graduation/Commencement

The traditional in-person Spring 2020 Commencement ceremony will be replaced with a BSC 2020 Virtual Graduation. This event will occur at the same time and on the same date: Friday, May 15 at 2 p.m. More information will be shared in coming weeks.  

 

All the best to you in the coming weeks. Stay well, stay healthy and know that we have faith in your abilities to thrive in hard times.  

March 20: BSC Student & Campus Update

As coronavirus spreads and additional recommendations have been provided by state and federal officials, BSC is taking additional significant steps to help slow the progression of this virus in order to protect our students, employees and community.  

We previously announced that BSC classes would be delivered online Thursday, March 26 through Sunday, April 5. This has changed. 
 

BSC classes will be delivered online beginning Thursday, March 26 through the last day of the semester Friday, May 15, 2020. Decisions regarding hands-on technical courses, labs, studio time and ensembles are still being determined, and you will receive more information soon.  


Your instructors will be in contact with you regarding course expectations through Blackboard or email once classes resume on Thursday, March 26.  Additional course details regarding the plan for the remaining semester will follow. We anticipate most instructors will use Blackboard, BSC’s learning management system (LMS). 

  • To learn more about how to access online classes go to bismarckstate.edu/coronavirus - under the Student Resources for Online Learning header, click on Blackboard
  • For additional BSC Blackboard assistance, email bsc.distlearn@bismarckstate.edu 
  • For students who do not have the technology needed to complete their classes online, please contact your instructor. 

Additionally, beginning Monday, March 23, BSC service areas will operate as a Virtual Campus until further notice. This means very few employees will be physically on campus. Those on campus include limited Buildings & Grounds employees and those providing security, food, and housing for students who need to live on campus. All other office services will be working remotely. We will extend virtual operations as needed. 


STUDENT RESOURCES – COMPUTER LABS, ACADEMIC ADVISING, ETC.
 
BSC is restricting public access to most buildings on campus, but the college will continue to provide academic and student support services throughout the end of the semester via telephone, email and limited access to computer labs.   

  • Computer Labs 
    • Student Union
      • 4 computers are available with some course-specific software loaded. 
      • Open Monday - Friday, 7:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. 
    • Library  
      • Open Monday, March 23 - Friday, March 27, 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. 
      • Additional computer lab access and/or hours of those noted above will be evaluated and adjusted as needed.
         
  • BSC Library  
    • Open Monday, March 23 – Friday, March 27, 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. 
    • On-site use limited to current BSC students, faculty, and staff; NDUS students. Must show current BSC or NDUS ID. 
    • Library computer lab open  
    • Library online resources (e.g., online catalog, multidisciplinary databases, eBooks and eAudiobooks, streaming video, streaming music) available 24/7 
    • Ask a Librarian - Call, email, or schedule an online consultation 
    • Need more or updated information visit the Library’s website  
       
  • Academic Tutoring  
  • Advising 
  • Student Accessibility  
  • Personal Counseling  
    • Personal counseling is available during regular hours and after hours. 
    • Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. or after hours call 701-224-5752 
    • bsc.counseling@bismarckstate.edu  

 

STUDENTS LIVING ON CAMPUS 

While BSC is encouraging all students to return home, we know that some students may need to remain. BSC Residence Life has communicated with all campus residents regarding the safe collection of their belongings. If you have questions call or email 701-224-5464 or bsc.housing@bismarckstate.edu.  

  • Information regarding possible room and board refunds will be shared as those decisions are made. 
  • Security, food service and housing for students residing on campus will continue as long as students are living in the residence halls.  
    • The BSC Student Union is open 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. for those services. 
  • Questions, please contact BSC Student and Residence Life: 

 

SUMMER AND FALL REGISTRATION 

No changes have been made to registration dates or starting dates for our summer or fall sessions at this time. We will keep you updated should that change. 

  • Summer registration opens Monday, March 23, 2020. All registration and advising will occur remotely. 
    • Please review your academic requirements report in CampusConnection and contact your advisor via telephone or email for assistance in selecting classes.
  • Summer Schedule of Classes 
  • For assistance with registration review the Summer Current Student Registration Guide
  • Fall advising and registration for current students begins April 1 
  • More information will be coming soon. 

 

EVENTS  

All events held on campus through May 3 are cancelled or postponed. We expect a decision to be made about Commencement within the week. We will make any announcement at that time.   

  • IF Commencement is cancelled, BSC will focus on how best to recognize and celebrate our 2020 BSC graduates in new ways.



During this unprecedented time, please know that BSC is fully committed to your education. Online learning can be challenging for many reasons and learning during a pandemic is new for all of us. Please do not hesitate to ask for help, guidance and support from your instructors and the many support services noted in this email. BSC will work with each student to help you succeed.  


HAVE MORE QUESTIONS?

Go to the Student FAQ section at the top of this page.

March 19: COVID-19 BSC Update
In light of most the recent information and guidance from the ND Governor’s Office and the ND Department of Health regarding COVID-19, beginning Monday, March 23 through Sunday, April 5, Bismarck State College will revise daily operations and transition to a Virtual BSC Campus. This situation will be revisited regularly and virtual operations will be extended if needed.

During this time:
 
  • Services such as security, food service and housing for students residing on campus will continue and BSC employees will be physically present in these areas as long as there are students living in the residence halls. The BSC Student Union (Doors B, D and F) will be open 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. for those services.
     
  • BSC Buildings & Grounds employees will provide continuing maintenance of the physical campus leveraging all social distancing and safety guidelines.
     
  • Campus buildings will not open to the public and will remained locked during this time. BSC departments will work virtually with those that need to do business with those areas. Contact information for those areas is listed below:
  • All BSC staff able to complete their duties remotely will be doing so. Arrangements are being made for those employees who cannot telecommute.
     
  • Beginning Thursday, March 26 most BSC classes will be delivered online through Sunday, April 5. As this situation evolves, this date may change. BSC will provide regular and ongoing communication to students during this time. Students will receive additional information and direction via email on Friday, March 20.
     
  • At this time, it is planned to have limited access to computers and printing for students. Hours and availability will be included in a future update.
     
  • All events held on campus now through Sunday, May 3, have been postponed or canceled in order to help mitigate spread of the disease. This date could be extended if necessary due to the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation.
The college’s crisis management team will continue to assess the situation and will communicate with students, employees and the public on a regular basis.

If you have questions not answered here, contact BSC Dean of Students Jay Meier at jay.meier@bismarckstate.edu. For media inquiries, contact BSC Communications Manager Juanita Lee at juanita.lee@bismarckstate.edu.
March 16: NJCAA Activities Announcement

Following the recent recommendations from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) has made the difficult decision to cancel all upcoming basketball championships as well as spring competition, effective immediately.

"In light of the progressive evolvement of the COVID-19 situation, the NJCAA has decided to end all competition for the remainder of the academic year," stated Dr. Christopher Parker, NJCAA President & CEO. "As an association, the NJCAA exhausted all possible avenues to potentially postpone competition for both upcoming basketball championships and spring sport competition. We believe following the recommendations of the CDC is in the best interest of our member colleges and our student-athletes."

Spring competition includes all practices, regular season, postseason, and national championship play.

Regarding eligibility for spring sports, no spring sport student-athlete who was enrolled at a member college in 2020 will be charged a year of participation.

Along with the cancellation of competition, all on and off-campus recruiting for all sports will be halted until April 15 with further evaluation to be assessed at that point in time. 

The NJCAA will explore the opportunity to expand allowable Letters of Intent for spring sports for both the 2020-21 and 2021-22 academic years under the recommendation of the NJCAA Eligibility Committee.

The NJCAA will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates as more information becomes available.

March 15: BSC Student Housing & Food Service Update
Beginning Thursday, March 26 most BSC classes will be delivered remotely through Sunday, April 5. As this situation evolves, this date may change. BSC will provide regular and ongoing communication to students, employees and the public.

Students are encouraged to remain away from campus during this time period. If necessary, students who have contracts for housing and dining will be able to live on campus. Additional information will be provided to students living in campus housing regarding how to request this accommodation.
March 15: COVID-19 BSC Update
In light of the most recent information regarding coronavirus and in order to help mitigate spread of the disease, BSC will extend its spring break for three days through end of day Wednesday, March 25. Beginning Thursday, March 26 most BSC classes will be delivered remotely through Sunday, April 5. As this situation evolves, this date may change. BSC will provide regular and ongoing communication to students, employees and the public.

STUDENT COURSEWORK
Students will receive more specific information regarding their programs, classes, labs and clinicals from their instructors or program directors via their bismarckstate.edu email and in Blackboard in the coming days.

STUDENT HOUSING AND FOOD SERVICE
We are encouraging students remain away from campus during this time period. If necessary, students who have contracts for housing and dining will be able to live on campus. Additional information will be provided to students living in campus housing regarding how to request this accommodation.

CAMPUS OPERATIONS
At this time, the college will continue daily operations. Employees should work with their supervisor regarding their work schedules. Employees are encouraged to practice social distancing (i.e., avoiding events and situations that put them in close contact with many people).

At this time, the BSC Aquatic and Wellness Center will be closed Monday, March 16 through Sunday, March 22.

NEXT STEPS
The college’s crisis management team will continue to assess the situation and will communicate with students, employees and the public on a regular basis. All student and public communications from BSC can be found at bismarckstate.edu/coronavirus.

If you have questions not answered here, contact BSC Dean of Students Jay Meier at 701-224-2701 or jay.meier@bismarckstate.edu. For media inquiries, contact BSC Communications Manager Juanita Lee at 701-224-2597 or juanita.lee@bismarckstate.edu.
March 15: BSC Student Coursework Update
Beginning Thursday, March 26 most BSC classes will be delivered remotely through Sunday, April 5. As this situation evolves, this date may change. BSC will provide regular and ongoing communication to students, employees and the public.

Students will receive more specific information regarding their programs, classes, labs and clinicals from their instructors or program directors via their bismarckstate.edu email and in Blackboard in the coming days.
March 15: BSC Campus Operations Update
Beginning Thursday, March 26 most BSC classes will be delivered remotely through Sunday, April 5. As this situation evolves, this date may change. BSC will provide regular and ongoing communication to students, employees and the public.

At this time, the college will continue daily operations from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Employees should work with their supervisor regarding their work schedules. Employees are encouraged to practice social distancing (i.e., avoiding events and situations that put them in close contact with many people).

At this time, the BSC Aquatic and Wellness Center will be closed Monday, March 16 through Sunday, March 22.
March 13: NJCAA Activities Announcement
The BSC Mystics Baseball season was postponed today after the NJCAA suspended all spring competitions from Saturday, March 14 through Friday, April 3. The NJCAA will continue to monitor and make adjustments as needed. Learn more about the NJCAA decision here.
March 12: BSC Student Coursework Update
BSC Spring Break will take place March 16-20 and no classes will be held during this time. BSC classes will resume on Monday, March 23.
 
THIS IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE AS THE SITUATION CHANGES. STUDENTS WILL BE NOTIFIED OF CHANGES VIA THE BSC EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION SYSTEM.
 
Students living on campus are asked to take essential belongings, academic materials, laptops and medications with them for Spring Break to be prepared for changes to this rapidly evolving situation that may occur while they are off campus.
 
Those students who would prefer not attending in-person classes, are free to make arrangements with their individual instructors. They will be accommodated to the extent possible in completing their courses online.

Faculty members who, for any reason, believe themselves to be at greater risk are encouraged, at their discretion and in consultation with their Dean, to arrange to offer the remainder of their courses for this semester online. We ask that students be respectful of this decision.
March 12: BSC Travel Update
COLLEGE-SPONSORED TRAVEL
As of today, all out-of-state college-sponsored travel is canceled until further notice.
 
Decisions regarding BSC athletic competitions will determined based on the direction of the conference, region, and national organizations. Refer to the BSC athletics website for the most updated information.
 
BSC PERSONAL TRAVEL
BSC is recommending employees follow CDC travel guidelines which include practicing social distancing by avoiding large crowds, keeping space between you and others, and frequent handwashing with soap and water or using an alcohol-based product. Once you return home, please be vigilant for the development of any signs or symptoms of COVID-19. 
 
All campus community members should be aware that if you travel, it may be suggested that you self-isolate for 14 days depending on where you’ve traveled to and from, even if you do not exhibit symptoms. Review a list of currently impacted areas that require a self-quarantine here.
March 12: BSC Events Update
At this time, all BSC events will move forward as scheduled. This decision could change in the future as the situation evolves. Affected groups will be notified. Refer to the BSC events calendar for updated event information.

People who are at higher risk are encouraged to avoid crowds as much as possible. This includes older adults and people who have severe underlying chronic medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes.
March 12: COVID-19 BSC Update II

As we are all aware, coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread and affect many parts of the U.S. and the rest of the world. North Dakota currently has one reported case of COVID-19.  
 

  • COVID-19 appears to pose the greatest risk to older adults and those with underlying and chronic health conditions.
  • Although the health risks seem lower for younger, healthy adults when they contract the virus, they can still serve as carriers of the virus to more vulnerable individuals.
  • Large gatherings of persons in close quarters pose an increased risk.
 
Bismarck State College is approaching this from a Bismarck-Mandan community perspective, and today consulted with the University of Mary and United Tribes Technical College, our local school districts as well as the ND Department of Health, the Governor’s Office, Department of Public Instruction and the North Dakota University System (NDUS) Chancellor. Across the NDUS, each institution is making decisions best for their community.
 
“All decisions are subject to change as this situation evolves. Our goal was to create the least amount of disruption to our students’ education. We will reassess the situation daily,” says BSC President Larry C. Skogen.
 

AT THIS TIME, BSC will take the following protective measures and actions to limit the spread of COVID-19 with the knowledge that this is a rapidly evolving situation that may change at any time:

CLASSES/ACADEMICS
BSC Spring Break will take place March 16-20 and no classes will be held during this time. BSC classes will resume on Monday, March 23.
 
THIS IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE AS THE SITUATION CHANGES. STUDENTS WILL BE NOTIFIED OF CHANGES VIA THE BSC EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION SYSTEM.
 
Students living on campus are asked to take essential belongings, academic materials, laptops and medications with them for Spring Break to be prepared for changes to this rapidly evolving situation that may occur while they are off campus.
 
Those students who would prefer not attending in-person classes, are free to make arrangements with their individual instructors. They will be accommodated to the extent possible in completing their courses online.

Faculty members who, for any reason, believe themselves to be at greater risk are encouraged, at their discretion and in consultation with their Dean, to arrange to offer the remainder of their courses for this semester online. We ask that students be respectful of this decision.
 
CAMPUS OPERATIONS
Campus Operations will continue as usual. All employees should continue their regular work schedules unless advised otherwise by their supervisor. Employees are encouraged to practice social distancing (i.e., avoiding events and situations that put them in close contact with many people).
 
BSC Building & Grounds is following the best practices recommended by the ND Department of Health to maintain the health and safety on campus including frequent disinfecting of surfaces in common areas.  
 
The BSC Mystic Marketplace is enhancing all sanitation practices in the dining center and replacing self-serve items with individually packaged offerings. 
 
EVENTS
At this time, all events will move forward as scheduled. This decision could change in the future as the situation evolves. Affected groups will be notified. Refer to the BSC events calendar for updated event information.

People who are at higher risk are encouraged to avoid crowds as much as possible. This includes older adults and people who have severe underlying chronic medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes.

COLLEGE-SPONSORED TRAVEL
As of today, all out-of-state college-sponsored travel is canceled until further notice.
 
Decisions regarding BSC athletic competitions will determined based on the direction of the conference, region, and national organizations. Refer to the BSC athletics website for the most updated information.
 
BSC PERSONAL TRAVEL
BSC is recommending employees follow CDC travel guidelines which include practicing social distancing by avoiding large crowds, keeping space between you and others, and frequent handwashing with soap and water or using an alcohol-based product. Once you return home, please be vigilant for the development of any signs or symptoms of COVID-19. 
 
All campus community members should be aware that if you travel, it may be suggested that you self-isolate for 14 days depending on where you’ve traveled to and from, even if you do not exhibit symptoms. Review a list of currently impacted areas that require a self-quarantine here.

LINKS FOR MORE INFORMATION

 
This is a new challenge not only for BSC, but for the broader community in Bismarck-Mandan, North Dakota, our country, and our world. We will continue to closely monitor the COVID-19 situation with local, state and federal public health officials. We encourage everyone in our campus community to take care of your physical and emotional health as we navigate this situation.

Finally, we understand that this decision may differ from other institutions’ decisions. But, as stated before, we made this decision in consultation with those agencies listed above with the best interests of our students and the Bismarck-Mandan community.  

If you have questions not answered here, contact BSC Dean of Students Jay Meier at 701-224-2701 or jay.meier@bismarckstate.edu. For media inquiries, contact BSC Communications Manager Juanita Lee at 701-224-2597 or juanita.lee@bismarckstate.edu.

March 12: COVID-19 BSC Update

This morning, BSC is meeting with our community partners to determine how best to move forward in mitigating the spread of the coronavirus. There have been announcements from other ND schools and we are meeting to determine the best path for BSC and the rest of our community. We will share our plan of action with students, campus and the public by the end of the day, today.  

We encourage everyone to continue to take preventative measures to avoid this disease, colds and flu:  

  • Avoid contact with sick people  
  • Clean your hands often by washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with 60%–95% alcohol 
  • If you are sick, stay home
March 12: BSC Campus Operations Update
Campus Operations will continue as usual. All employees should continue their regular work schedules unless advised otherwise by their supervisor. Employees are encouraged to practice social distancing (i.e., avoiding events and situations that put them in close contact with many people).
 
BSC Building & Grounds is following the best practices recommended by the ND Department of Health to maintain the health and safety on campus including frequent disinfecting of surfaces in common areas.  
 
The BSC Mystic Marketplace is enhancing all sanitation practices in the dining center and replacing self-serve items with individually packaged offerings. 
March 10: COVID-19 BSC Update

Spring break begins March 16. BSC will continue to monitor the coronavirus situation and determine whether any change in our operations is needed. If BSC takes any action that affects students, you will receive an update during Spring Break via the BSC Emergency Notification System. 

North Dakota Department of Health reports ZERO CASES of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) reported in N.D., but BSC remains vigilant and prepared.?  

The NDDoH and our local public health unit encourage all persons to take preventative measures to avoid this disease, colds and flu: 

  • Avoid contact with sick people 

  • Clean your hands often by washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with 60%–95% alcohol 

  • If you are sick, stay home. 

If you are traveling over Spring Break: 

  • Avoid contact with sick people 

  • Clean your hands often by washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with 60%–95% alcohol 

  • Pay attention to your health for 14 days after your return 

  • Stay home and seek medical advice if you get sick with fever, cough, or difficulty breathing 

  • Avoid travelling if you are sick 

 
Building and Grounds is following the best practices recommended by the ND Department of Health (NDDoH) to maintain the health and safety on campus including frequent disinfecting of surfaces in common areas.  

If you have questions, contact BSC Dean of Students Jay Meier at 701-224-2701 or jay.meier@bismarckstate.edu . For medical care contact your doctor or clinic. Additional information on coronavirus is available on Sanford Health and CHI-St. Alexius websites. 

North Dakota Gov. Burgum and other state official updates on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

March 19: COVID-19 ND Governor Update
Gov. Doug Burgum today announced that public access to state facilities, including the North Dakota State Capitol, will be restricted effective immediately until Monday, April 6, 2020. 
 
The governor’s executive order directs the transition of most state government team members to work remotely. Although access to the Capitol and other state facilities will be restricted, state services will continue to be available in alternative ways, such as online.
 
“The health, safety and well-being of our citizens remains our top priority,” Burgum said. “With cases of community spread now confirmed in North Dakota, focusing on the health and well-being of Team ND members is crucial to ensuring continuity of government services for our citizens.”
 
Burgum reinforced that state government remains open and functioning, but rather is modifying the way agency business is conducted during this unique and unprecedented time.
 
Out of an abundance of caution, Team ND has been preparing to work remotely over the past several weeks. As of the end of today, the North Dakota Information Technology Department (NDIT) will have transitioned nearly 3,100 team members to platforms that allow for remote work.
 
Burgum stressed that every citizen needs to take responsibility to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and practice social distancing, noting that some North Dakota agencies have been piloting the work-from-home strategy for over a week, with no disruption in government services.
 
“We have had ongoing communications with Team ND about being prepared to work remotely,” Burgum said. “We are grateful for our robust NDIT team and all other statewide elected officials who are helping the transition go as seamlessly as possible for Team ND.”
 
A screening process is being developed to allow public access to several state facilities by appointment only. Until process is in effect, there will be no public access.
 
Burgum reminds North Dakotans to follow the guidelines released by the White House on Monday to slow the spread of coronavirus.
 
For the most updated and timely information and updates related to COVID-19, visit the NDDoH website at www.health.nd.gov/coronavirus , follow them on FacebookTwitter andInstagram and visit the CDC website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.
 
March 15: COVID-19 ND Governor Update
By executive order, Gov. Doug Burgum today ordered the closure of North Dakota K-12 schools in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 based on guidance from public school superintendents, medical experts and the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH).  
 
Out of an abundance of caution, public and private schools will be closed March 16-20. The decision was made in an effort to reduce the rate of infection and give the state an opportunity to gather more data, better assess testing and treatment capabilities and plan for education in the event of an extended COVID-19 pandemic. The situation will be reassessed at the end of the week.
 
“We remain in a state of calm and continue to base our decisions on fact, not fear,” Burgum said. “We want to work through the situation, gain understanding and make sure we’re driven by data and solid strategies.”  
 
Burgum and other state officials plan to meet with district superintendents and health care providers to gather information and answer questions. Teachers should follow their district’s guidance on reporting to school.  
 
“Students’ health and safety is our number one priority,” said State Superintendent Kirsten Baesler. “We're working with North Dakota district superintendents and community leaders to do the best that we can for our students.”
 
“Closing K-12 education is a proactive and aggressive approach to minimize community spread,” said State Health Officer Mylynn Tufte. “What we’ve learned this weekend from our medical advisors is that we need more time to ‘flatten the curve’ to slow the spread of COVID-19 so we don’t overwhelm the health care system." 
 
State officials have the following recommendations:  
 
  • Follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendation that groups or individuals should cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more.   
  • Stay home when you’re sick, cover your coughs and sneezes and wash your hands often.  
  • Get plenty of rest, drink fluids, eat healthy foods and manage your stress to help prevent getting COVID-19 and recover from it if you do.
 
The Department of Public Instruction is working with the Department of Human Services Division of Behavioral Health to launch resources to help explain COVID-19 to children.  
 
The state lab has tested 112 individuals for COVID-19, with one positive case from an individual who had travel history. If individuals have questions, they can call the NDDoH hotline at 1-866-207-2880 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday.  
 
For the most updated and timely information and updates related to COVID-19, visit the NDDoH website at www.health.nd.gov/coronavirus , follow them on FacebookTwitter and Instagram and visit the CDC website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus
 
March 12: COVID-19 ND Governor Update
Gov. Doug Burgum, in conjunction with the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH), released recommendations today for events and public gatherings in light of the spread of novel coronavirus disease, COVID-19.
 
The recommendations outline different strategies for events and public gatherings based on three levels of risk, or thresholds.
 
“These recommendations are designed to help leaders, event organizers and others determine which actions are needed to mitigate and contain the spread of coronavirus,” Burgum said. “While North Dakota is currently at the lowest risk level, with one confirmed case of COVID-19 and no evidence of community spread, event organizers are free to implement more stringent restrictions. We anticipate crossing these thresholds as community spread of COVID-19 arrives in North Dakota.”
 
Following are definitions and recommendations for the three risk levels:
  • Low Risk - Threshold 1 means unmitigated or uncontained community transmission of coronavirus is occurring elsewhere, but there may not be evidence of significant community transmission in North Dakota yet. At this level, authorities should consider initiating minimally restrictive, or burdensome, but effective mitigation measures. Additionally, authorities should consider canceling or postponing events where a substantive number of attendees are from high-risk locations or high-risk populations.
North Dakota has had one individual test positive for COVID-19, but the case did not involve community transmission. The Department of Health on Wednesday confirmed the state’s first presumptive case of COVID-19 in a Ward County resident in his 60s. The man had traveled out of state where he had contact with a person who has since tested positive for the disease. The Ward County man is currently self-isolating and recovering at home as the public health investigation is ongoing and NDDoH awaits confirmation testing from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
 
  • Moderate risk - Threshold 2 is defined as evidence that unmitigated or uncontained community transmission of coronavirus is occurring in at least one geographic jurisdiction within the state. At this level, authorities should consider canceling or rescheduling events if located within the area that has community transmission of the disease or if a large number of attendees are anticipated to come from these impacted areas. Consider alternative attendance options such as web-based, televised only or remote attendance.
 
  • High Risk - Threshold 3 means there is widespread community transmission of coronavirus within North Dakota. At this level, authorities should cancel or postpone all events that involve the potential for disease transmission and cannot accommodate alternative attendance options.

 
Authorities with questions about the recommendations should contact the NDDoH. The CDC recommends adults over the age of 60 and individuals with multiple underlying health conditions refrain from group activities. Individuals who think they may have COVID-19 should call their health care provider first before going to the clinic, unless it’s an emergency.
 
An additional 11 tests came back negative today at the NDDoH lab, bringing the total number of negative tests to 23 since testing began last week.
 
For the most updated and timely information and updates related to COVID-19, visit the NDDoH website at www.health.nd.gov/coronavirus , follow them on FacebookTwitter and Instagram and visit the CDC website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.

March 3: COVID-19 ND Govenor Update

Gov. Doug Burgum and state officials provided an update on the statewide response to the COVID-19 virus Tuesday, March 3, which is summarized below. The video is available here, and the news release is available here.

No cases have been reported in North Dakota and the risk remains low; however, ongoing community spread has been identified in multiple other states. North Dakotans play a key role in reducing the impact of COVID-19 in the state, officials said.

“It is highly likely that COVID-19 will spread to North Dakota in the future. Right now our focus is preparation, not panic,” Burgum said. “State agencies are working together with key federal and local partners to prepare and respond. North Dakotans are encouraged to take steps to keep themselves and their loved ones healthy. Child care facilities, schools, universities, businesses, individuals and communities will play a key role in reducing the impact of COVID-19 on North Dakota.”

“The most important thing North Dakotans can do right now to help prevent the spread of disease is to avoid non-essential international travel to countries with ongoing community spread,” said Mylynn Tufte, state health officer. “In addition, individuals should wash their hands often, clean surfaces regularly, and stay home when sick.”

The state can now test for the virus, and the release contains information on how to reduce the spread of the virus.

The entire news release is available here.

Preventing the spread of respiratory diseases like Coronavirus (COVID-19)

  
 

Whitehouse.gov has shared the above information to help slow the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). Download a printable poster here.



The North Dakota Department of Health has shared the above tips to help protect from Coronavirus (COVID-19). Download a printable poster here.