Beginning September 7, 2021, fully vaccinated individuals are welcome to attend 8 AM daily Mass (Monday - Saturday). Sunday Mass is not open to the public at this time.
Attendees must wear a mask while in the building.
Divine Word College, in coordination with state and local public health experts, is closely monitoring reports and recommendations from national and regional health departments regarding COVID-19.
Active COVID-19 Cases – As of Aug 18, there are 278 active cases in Dubuque County (85 more than Aug. 11).
High Community Transmission Rate - The CDC continues to rate Dubuque County at the HIGH level of community transmission of COVID-19.
• 7-Day New Case Rate per 100K Population through Aug. 16 = 95.57
• Percent Positivity through Aug. 12 = 11.2%
Facemask Requirement Extended
The DWC Board of Administration once again discussed the COVID-19 situation extensively in their meeting on Friday August 20. Because Dubuque County is now a place of high community spread, it was decided that facemasks are required for everyone, for an indefinite time period. Once the current COVID-19 surge subsides, it will be possible to change the requirement. There are some adjustments to the policy for those that live off-campus and those that live on-campus.
Outdoors, facemasks are not required when observing social distancing.
For Mass and community prayers facemasks are required for everyone.
For people who live off-campus, facemasks are required at all times.
For people who live on-campus facemasks are not required after 5pm on weekdays. On Saturday and Sunday, facemasks are not required. Those who live on campus live as one household – and we will soon be 100% vaccinated. However, for those who live on-campus facemasks ARE still required at all times for those who have not yet completed their vaccination.
For everyone, facemasks should be worn when traveling off campus to visit public places.
When wearing a facemask, please be sure that it covers your nose and mouth.
Vaccination. Divine Word College requires students to be vaccinated for COVID-19. Exceptions for medical reasons are made. If you have questions or doubts, talk to your doctor.
At DWC, the SVD community is 100% fully vaccinated. All but one returning students are already vaccinated. New students who were unable to get a vaccination will be assisted to start the process shortly after their arrival. Ninety percent of off-campus employees (faculty and staff) are also fully vaccinated.
People are considered fully vaccinated:
Many sites are now open for walk-in vaccinations including Walgreens, Hartig Drug, HyVee Pharmacy and Walmart. Most doctors' offices also offer the vaccine.
Testing. In the first days that students, staff, faculty, and SVDs come back to the College, everyone will be tested for COVID-19 infections, whether vaccinated or not. A BinaxNow 15-minute screening test will be available in Br. Mike's office. He will also have a PCR saliva-test pack available. This latter test is sent off to the State Laboratory and the results will be sent by email. The PCR tests are considered the most reliable tests available to detect a COVID-19 infection.
Random testing will also be administered throughout the semester. If someone tests positive, he or she will need to go into the ten-day isolation period as it was last year.
The delta variant COVID-19 virus is now widespread in Iowa. With this variant, an infection CAN be carried by a vaccinated person and spread to others, even if it does not cause illness in the person who has been vaccinated. Such "breakthrough" infections in vaccinated persons are relatively rare. The delta variant is more highly infectious than previous versions, and spreads very rapidly in unvaccinated persons.
Facemasks. For the first two weeks of the semester, from August 9 to 22, everyone is required to wear facemasks in the building. Outdoors, facemasks are optional.
Dining Room. The dining room is open only to vaccinated persons. Persons who have not completed the vaccination process can go through the food line (while wearing facemasks) and take their meals to the tables set up in the courtyard or on the porch. Of course, vaccinated people can also choose to eat outdoors where the danger of virus spread is greatly minimized.
Feeling sick? Please stay home or in your room. Get tested and wear a mask, even if you have been vaccinated.