Provost: Travel Advisory, March 9

   COVID-19 Updates | Posted on March 10, 2020

Spring Break & Related Travel Updates

March 9, 2020

Dear Members of the Andrews University Community:

In recent days, the rapid spread of the Coronavirus and COVID-19 has caused colleges and universities, both domestically and internationally, to make significant changes to their operations. This rapid spread has other significant global and domestic impact. As a University community, we are not immune to the impact of COVID-19 and we, too, need to make changes to our operations.

These changes will impact upcoming travel over spring break and beyond.

A top priority of the University administration is to ensure a safe and intellectually-stimulating learning environment for students and employees. There are two approaches that we need to take to help ensure our safety—a corporate approach and a personal approach.

Corporate Steps Taken by Andrews University

International Travel: All University-sponsored international travel is suspended until further notice.

While we value the rich learning that international opportunities provide, I invite you to consider exploring how similar learning outcomes can be achieved within our local area, including the use of virtual and electronic connections when travel and direct contact isn’t possible.

Domestic Travel: Likewise, until further notice, all University-sponsored domestic travel is strongly discouraged.

In order to demonstrate the University’s commitment to this expectation, the president and I have canceled our domestic travel to Orlando, where we were to participate in the Association of Adventist Colleges and Universities (AACU) discussions. As it relates to your own University travel, I invite you to also work immediately to notify relevant airlines, hotels and conference organizers of the need to reschedule or cancel travel plans.

I invite each one of us as Andrews employees to adhere and respond to these travel advisories. If any of your domestic travel plans, for whatever reason, cannot be changed, then please seek approval from your relevant dean or vice president before embarking on your trip. During this period, only travel that has received prior approval from your relevant dean or vice president would be reimbursed.

Personal Steps You Should Take

I encourage all of us as Andrews community members to reduce or eliminate personal travel over the upcoming Andrews University Spring Break (March 13–22 for the University; March 16–20 for Andrews Academy and Ruth Murdoch Elementary School).

For students who live in the United States, I understand that you may want to travel home to spend time with friends and family. However, at this time of international and domestic concern, I strongly urge each member of our community to make the choice to not use airline travel or other means of public transportation in the weeks to come, if that is at all possible.

Additionally, members of our Andrews community may have recently traveled to (or are returning from) or welcomed (or will be welcoming) visitors from countries identified by the CDC as high-risk countries/regions internationally (you can review current CDC guidelines about high-risk countries/regions here). If so, you or your guests are required to follow established protocol, especially for those who are returning from CDC Warning Level 3/Travel Health Notice countries (this includes two weeks of social distancing or self-quarantine; you can learn more about this process and relevant guidelines here). You, and/or your visitors, are required to formally report to the Berrien County Health Department (269 -926-7121) to confirm the appropriate next steps.

On the Andrews University campus, faculty and staff should also notify your college/Seminary dean or relevant vice president with specifics on your plans to return to the campus when those travels are complete. 

Students who have traveled internationally should email the Division of Campus & Student Life at with details on your travels and your plans to return to the campus.

During this period of heightened risk, I urge our entire community to follow the protocols and safeguards currently recommended by the CDC, such as:

  • Build your immunity—eat well, sleep well, exercise, reduce your level of stress, etc.
  • Avoid handshakes.
  • Avoid hugging and other public displays of affection.
  • Wash your hands often, and for 20 seconds or more, with soap and warm water.
  • Use hand sanitizers, ideally with an alcohol content of at least 60%.
  • Cough/sneeze into your inner elbow and not into your hands.
  • Stay at home if you feel sick or “under the weather.”
  • If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever or  symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, alert your physician or the Berrien County Health Department (269-926-7121).

Andrews University will continue to share updates and relevant information about COVID-19 here. I invite you to bookmark that web page for ongoing reference.

Thank you for your personal commitment to these crucial steps and safeguards as we seek to limit and prevent the spread of COVID-19.


Christon Arthur