MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia University will require everyone on its campuses to wear masks indoors beginning Monday no matter their vaccination status.
WVU announced Friday the expanded measures will be in effect through Oct. 6, when the situation will be reevaluated.
“Everyone entering campus buildings and facilities must wear a mask properly above the nose and keep it on while inside,” Friday’s announcement said. “Members of the WVU community do not need to wear a mask indoors when in personal office spaces, in small gatherings of 10 or less on residence hall floors and rooms, in personal vehicles, when eating or drinking, or while engaging in fitness activities.”
The new requirement does not include Milan Puskar Stadium but WVU officials said fans are strongly encouraged to wear masks at indoor facilities that are part of the stadium complex.
University officials said COVID-19 cases on campus remain at “manageable” levels but the move is being made due to the significant increase of COVID cases in West Virginia.
“This requirement will remain in place through Oct. 6 or until the University determines new guidance is warranted based on continued monitoring of factors including state, local and campus COVID-19 data,” the WVU statement said. “The University will be particularly focused on the vaccination rates of students and employees and the hospitalization rates across the state.”
According to WVU, nearly 74% of the Morgantown campus faculty and staff have verified their vaccination while nearly 77% of Morgantown students have. At the Keyser campus, faculty and staff is at 73% and students at 34.8%. At the Beckley campus,. vaccination rates are 75.3% for faculty and staff and 53.5% for students.
“I am encouraged to see that more of our students and employees are choosing to be vaccinated,” WVU President Gordon Gee said Friday.