Faculty and Staff - March 24, 2022

Dear Campus Community,

As I pledged to do in a message earlier this month, we have closely watched the COVID-19 infection rates of campus community members returning from spring break to help us determine a path forward in regards to our indoor campus mask requirement. Looking at our own data, seeing how York County’s infection rate (and all of South Carolina) is now considered low (in the green), and considering the CDC’s recommendations for that designation, Winthrop will transition to mask optional effective Thursday, March 24.  

This change is possible thanks to our high vaccination rate (currently 82 percent among in-person students), significant decline in COVID-19 infections on campus and in our surrounding community, and the country generally moving past the peak of flu season.

This is great news and further evidence that we are transitioning toward the endemic stage of COVID-19. It is important to note that masks will still be required in all of the Center for Student Wellness departments in Crawford as that building is a healthcare facility. Also we want to support those who choose to continue wearing masks by still making both surgical and KN95 masks available through Facilities Management and Student Affairs.

We continue to encourage mask wearing for some individuals, including: 

  • If you are at high risk for illness – those who are elderly, immunocompromised, pregnant or who have certain medical conditions
  • If you live or regularly interact with someone at high risk for illness
  • If you have not yet received a COVID-19 vaccine*
  • If you have symptoms of COVID-19

* Two more vaccine and testing clinics are available on campus – 9 a.m.-3 p.m. on April 20 and May 2 in McBryde.

The university will continue to closely monitor data and update the COVID-19 dashboard through the remainder of the spring semester. We also are watching the international spread of the omicron sub-variant and will react with appropriate public health measures as needed. 

Thank you for all you have done and will continue to do to keep our community safe.



George W. Hynd
Interim President