Beavers Forward

Safety Guidelines and More

Buena Vista University is committed to the health and safety of our our students, faculty, and staff, and work to provide updated health and safety guidance. We are Beavers and we will keep building together!

Last updated July 29, 2021

Campus overhead

Take me to:

Health & Safety

Face Covering Policy

  • Mask wearing and physical distancing on campus is optional. Fully-vaccinated individuals are not required to wear masks. Following CDC guidance, unvaccinated individuals should continue to wear a face mask when physical distancing cannot be maintained. 
  • Students and employees are expected to bring masks to campus. Students and employees should carry a mask with them when on campus as masks may be required in certain locations, as well as during certain events. A mask mandate may also be reinstated in the event of an outbreak of COVID-19 on campus. Students and employees are expected to comply with mask-wearing in spaces where it is designated as a requirement.  
  • Individual decisions about mask wearing, or requesting mask wearing when meeting, should be honored and respected. Assumptions should not be made about a person’s vaccination status based on their mask-wearing decisions.   


  • All classrooms and community spaces, including restrooms, will be cleaned and sanitized daily. 


  • Please continue frequent handwashing following proper technique (20 seconds with friction rub) using soap and water or hand sanitizer throughout the day.
  • Please follow respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette (cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or use the inside of an elbow).

Quarantine/Isolation/Testing Policies

  • Vaccinated individuals who come in contact with a case of COVID-19 do not need to quarantine unless experiencing symptoms.
  • If an unvaccinated individual has tested positive or has been in contact with a positive case, they should quarantine/isolate immediately and contact Health Services (students) or Human Resources (employees). 
  • Unvaccinated  individuals who come in contact with a case of COVID-19 will be required to quarantine for 10 days. Students may either quarantine at home or in Liberty Hall if they are unable to return home. 
    • Unvaccinated individuals will need to take a COVID-19 test five to seven days after exposure. COVID-19 tests can be obtained through BVU’s Health Services and Wellness or in a student’s local area if they have returned home for quarantine. 
      • If the individual receives a negative test result, they may return to campus after seven days if they have been fever-free and/or symptom-free for the last 24 hours.
      • Individuals who test positive will need to remain in quarantine for the full 10 days and must be fever free and/or symptom free for the last 24 hours. Students will need to contact Health Services for approval to return to campus.
  • Unvaccinated individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 within the past three months and have recovered do not have to quarantine or take a COVID-19 test again as long as they do not develop new symptoms. Once these individuals are past three months, they will not be considered immune and will have to adhere to the policies above.  


  • Courses that are typically delivered in-person will be held face-to-face as normal. BVU will no longer offer Storm Lake remote as a learning option. Students who wish to learn remotely may enroll in BVU’s online and hybrid courses. Students can work with their academic advisor to determine their learning plan. 
  • Faculty may require masks in classrooms. Students must work directly with their faculty if they are required to quarantine/isolate due to a positive COVID-19 test result or exposure. 

Teaching English as a Second Language

Move-In and Residence Life

Move-in Dates

  • Aug. 10, 2021: Football, Resident Assistants
  • Aug. 17, 2021: Men's Soccer, Women's Soccer, Volleyball, Women's Tennis, Women's Golf, Cheer/Dance, Marching Band, Education for Service Scholars
  • Aug. 23, 2021: Men's Cross Country, Women's Cross Country, OASIS, Orientation Team
  • Aug. 27, 2021: All other new students
  • Aug. 29, 2021: All other returning students
  • TBA: Peer Leaders, IMPACT, other groups

Move-in Policies

  • Students will sign up for a move-in time with Residence Life. All students will check in at the Fieldhouse prior to moving into their residence hall. 
  • Students can bring a maximum two guests to assist them with move-in. Guests must wear masks when inside residence halls. 
  • Students will receive more details via email from Residence Life in July.


Community spaces, including restrooms, will be cleaned daily. 

Campus Dining

Dining services will be fully open and operational.  

    Vaccinations & Testing

    • COVID-19 vaccinations are highly recommended for students. Students who already received vaccine should submit their vaccination information prior to move-in through the BVU Student Health Portal: Those who have been vaccinated will not have to take a COVID-19 test upon arrival.
    • Students who have not had the COVID-19 vaccine will have the option to get vaccinated upon returning to campus. Students who choose to not get vaccinated will be required to sign a declination form during check-in acknowledging they understand the implications of not being vaccinated.   
    • Students who are unvaccinated or do not wish to disclose vaccination status will be tested for COVID-19 infection upon return to campus.

    Residence Hall Visitation Policy

    Only BVU students (residential and commuter) will be allowed in residence halls. At this time, no outside guests will be allowed. BVU will continue to evaluate this policy. 

    Mask Wearing/Physical Distancing

    Mask wearing is optional for residents inside the residence halls, with respect being given to students who request masks be worn. Physical distancing is encouraged. 

    Student Engagement

    • Student organization meetings and events may occur in-person as long as they do not exceed the established capacity limits in the space in which they are held. All student organization and student engagement events are expected to abide by all current University COVID-19 policies.
    • Student organizations may bring external guests to campus (i.e. speakers, performers, etc.) for club meetings and events. Students must submit the BVU Vendor and Visitor Clearance Form, which can be found at the Information Desk, ahead of the event and the guests must be approved by both the Director of Community & Student Engagement and the Vice President for Student Success.
    • Student organizations may travel for organization events and programs to domestic locations only. Travel must be approved by both the Director of Community & Student Engagement and the Vice President for Student Success prior to the trip.  

    Students outdoors


    Fall Schedules: Athletic competitions/schedules will resume as normal for the Fall 2021 season. 

    COVID-19 Testing: Following current NCAA guidelines, vaccinated members of athletic teams are exempt from surveillance screening. The NCAA requires those who are not vaccinated to be tested in the following cadence: one time per week with a PCR test or three times per week with a POC antigen test. 

    Fan Attendance: All athletic competitions will be open to spectators with no limit on attendance. BVU will continue to follow guidance from the NCAA, the A-R-C, and local and state health officials. The attendance policy is subject to change at any time and masks may be required.

    Siebens Fieldhouse and tree

    Human Resources Policies

    Return to Work

    • All employees should return to work on campus full time unless otherwise approved by their site supervisor and/or Human Resources. 

    Work-Related Travel

    • Travel for University business may resume. When representing the University, employees are expected to follow COVID-19 safety protocol when traveling on planes, using public transportation, or entering other businesses. 
    • International trips for University business must be cleared by your supervisor, the relevant Vice President, and the Director of Human Resources. The United States State Department guidelines for travel abroad will be consulted when making these decisions.


    • BVU requires unvaccinated faculty and staff who are showing symptoms of COVID-19 to get tested through their healthcare provider or through self-testing COVID-19 kits provided by Health Services. With supervisor approval, employees may work from home while waiting for their COVID-19 test results. A negative test result must be provided, along with an improvement of symptoms, before returning to work. Employees unable to perform their job duties from home will need to contact Human Resources.

    Emergency Sick Leave 

    On April 1, 2021, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) was extended under the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) through September 30, 2021. The emergency paid sick leave and emergency paid family leave covered under the FFCRA applies to the following scenarios:

    • the employee is subject to a federal, state or local quarantine or isolation related to COVID-19;
    • the employee has been advised by a healthcare provider to self-quarantine;
    • the employee is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and seeking a diagnosis;
    • the employee is caring for an individual who is subject to quarantine or is self-quarantining; or who has been advised to self-quarantine by a health care professional
    • the employee is caring for a child whose school or place of care is closed (or child care provider is unavailable) because of COVID-19;
    • the employee is seeking or awaiting the results of a diagnostic test for, or a medical diagnosis of, COVID-19;
    • the employee has been exposed to COVID-19;
    • the employer has requested such test or diagnosis;
    • the employee is obtaining immunization related to COVID-19; or
    • the employee is recovering from any injury, disability, illness, or condition related to a COVID-19 immunization.