Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. Wearing an appropriate face covering is just one aspect of our multi-pronged approach to help protect the safety and health of our NMSU community. They are also required by the NMDOH for anyone in a public space, with exceptions for eating or drinking, or if otherwise advised by a health care provider. If wearing a face covering will adversely affect an employee’s safety or health, employees should contact EHS&RM or the Aggie Health and Wellness Center for additional guidance. Vending machines across campus will be stocked with face coverings, other protective equipment, and supplies.
Before returning to campus, staff must have:
  • Authorization from their supervisor
  • Completed the Return to Campus training from Training Central
    • Employees who have taken previous versions of the training (i.e., “Employees Returning to Work,” released on 6/8/20, and “Return to Campus,” released on 6/27/20) are not required to take the module again.
    • All supervisors must also complete a Managing the Return to the Workplace module to supplement the employee training.
  • Faculty are asked to complete the training within 48 hours of returning to work.
NMSU staff are encouraged to continue teleworking, and should make alternative work arrangements directly with their supervisor. Detailed information about NMSU’s alternative work arrangements can be found here. The Alternative Work Arrangements form is available from NMSU Human Resources.
Yes. Options for assistance may include:
  • Teleworking and Alternative Schedules - Where feasible, employees may, in agreement with their supervisors, work from home or adopt an alternative schedule.
  • Paid Leave - Employees with challenges due to their illness, the illness of a family member, or lost childcare resources due to school or childcare closures may be eligible for leave through the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). These leaves expand available sick leave, Family Medical Leave, or both, and may be used intermittently.
  • New Mexico Kids maintains a list of childcare providers in the state, and additional resources are available to assist children, youth, and families during the pandemic.
For more information please consult with your supervisor or find more information here.
Safety during a pandemic starts with taking personal responsibility for your own safety and health. For our return to campus, we have provided guidelines for all members of the NMSU Community. These describe behaviors that you can use to increase your safety on campus. NMSU is also taking great care to reduce opportunities for viral transmission throughout campus and campus life. Here are some changes you can expect:
    • We know that some students learn better in person, and that others prefer to not be on campus. The class schedule has been revised to include more instructional options to meet these needs. NMSU has reassessed all classrooms, labs, and lecture halls to ensure physical distancing is possible among the students who are present.
    • Face masks are mandatory on campus.
    • NMSU's Facilities and Services Department will be sanitizing classrooms, labs, and lecture halls daily.
    • Resident students from out of state will be required to quarantine in accordance with Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham's Executive Order 2020-054.
    • As members of the NMSU community, we are each responsible for our own health and safety. COVID-19 is new and there is still much we are learning about it, but we do know that through responsible behavior, we can reduce transmission of the virus and we can contribute to the health and safety of our colleagues across the NMSU system, as well as the communities and individuals we serve. Every member of the Aggie community needs to do their part as we battle COVID-19 together
In his June 12, 2020 Campus Communication, “Why are we coming back? To Shape the Future”, President Floros stated, “As educators, we play a central role as subject matter experts who develop curricula and create academic programs. However, more important is the role we play in shaping the learning environment of our institutions…Our students not only need but truly want their education… our students want to come back, but they also want options. A survey by ICT found that:
  • 46% of students preferred face-to-face classes. Reasons for this varied from not learning well online to studying in disciplines best suited to experiential learning, like music, dance or nursing.
  • 28% said they wanted their classes in a hybrid format that combined face-to-face with distance learning. This option was viewed as a way to remain flexible in uncertain times.
  • 26% said they wanted their classes online, often for reasons relating to their health or the health of their families.

Fall 2020 classes will be taught using one of four instructional methods. These are listed and described below.

  1. 100% online asynchronous delivery: Students complete work independently, on their own schedule, no matter what time of day. Students are given deadlines by which they need to login and complete assignments.
  2. 100% online synchronous delivery: Classes occur on set schedules through remote delivery. Students and instructors are online at the same time, and lectures, discussions, and presentations take place at specific hours. All students must be online at that time in order to participate in the class.
  3. Hybrid (online with required in-person attendance): Content delivery incorporates more than one modality, e.g., face-to-face and remote synchronous or asynchronous delivery. Face-to-face attendance is limited and may include alternating in-person and online synchronous or asynchronous attendance; may also provide recordings of lectures or experiential components for later reference to supplement concurrent transmission of lectures or experiential components. All students participate in all delivery modalities.
  4. Flex (NMSU-Grants Campus): Students can choose whether to attend face-to-face or remotely via synchronous video conferencing tools. Face-to-face attendance is limited and may include alternating attendance options; may also provide recordings of lectures or experiential components for later reference to supplement concurrent transmission of lectures or experiential components. Students may not participate in all delivery modalities.
In alignment with public health recommendations, NMSU is taking measures to prevent community spread of COVID-19, which includes enhanced cleaning and disinfection procedures created by Environmental Health Safety & Risk Management (EHS&RM) based on guidance from the CDC and the NMDOH for cleaning and disinfection. Detailed guidelines for cleaning are available on the ESH&RM website. That site includes cleaning procedures, information on the process to clean after a positive case is reported, and recommended disinfectants. We can all contribute to a healthier campus by following some general guidelines:
  • Wear a face covering when you are in public.
  • Maintain six feet of distance between yourself and others at all times.
  • Increase the frequency of cleaning and disinfecting, focusing on high-touch surfaces such as residence hall communal rooms, public restrooms, computer labs, exercise rooms, library tables, buttons, handrails, tables, faucets, doorknobs, and shared keyboards. Cleaning and disinfecting daily and between users for shared workstations with attention to these areas helps remove bacteria and viruses, including the virus that causes COVID-19.
  • Practice good hand hygiene after cleaning:
    • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
    • If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
(Updated: 07/22/20 in NMSU Ready)

Detailed guidelines for cleaning are available on the ESH&RM website. That site includes cleaning procedures, information on the process to clean after a positive case is reported, and recommended disinfectants. Our Facilities & Services custodial team has revised their schedules to increase custodial coverage and to have staff on campus during classes. Custodial team schedules will be adjusted, if needed, after classroom use schedules are finalized. Custodial teams will emphasize sanitizing shared spaces on a daily basis in the academic buildings:
  • Clean and sanitize classrooms
  • Clean and sanitize computer labs
  • Clean and sanitize restrooms
  • Clean building entryways, break rooms, elevators, conference rooms, and common areas.
Some tasks will be reduced to allow custodial resources to focus on sanitizing high-use areas. Custodial team performs the following tasks on a weekly basis in the academic buildings:
  • Remove trash and recyclable materials from departmental offices
  • Vacuum and dust surfaces without moving items in departmental offices
  • Clean hard surface floors weekly
  • Vacuum and carpet spot removal weekly
As we move forward with resuming some in-person instruction, the custodial team may modify weekly tasks to accommodate increased daily task cleaning. In non-academic buildings, the custodial team will adapt their cleaning schedule and frequency to adjust for reduced building occupancy. Schedule changes will be communicated to the building monitors. Custodial teams will perform the following tasks on in the non-academic buildings after the occupancy load is verified:
  • Clean and sanitize occupied departmental offices
  • Clean and sanitize training or computer rooms
  • Clean and sanitize restrooms
  • Clean building entryways, break rooms, elevators, conference rooms, and common areas
  • Empty trash receptacles in common areas and break rooms
  • Remove trash and recyclable materials from departmental offices
  • Vacuum and dust surfaces without moving items in occupied departmental offices
  • Clean hard surface floors weekly
  • Vacuum and spot removal weekly
Facilities & Services will update the cleaning protocol document regularly as additional departments reopen and communicate updates with building monitors and campus community.
(Updated: 06/30/20 in NMSU Ready)

NMSU is working to procure the supplies needed to maintain a healthy environment. All faculty, staff, and students should ensure that their personal workspaces are sanitized, and NMSU will ensure availability of standard supplies upon return to campus operations. Employees and students will be provided masks, or they may use their own, and all will support the COVID-19 Safety Commitment. Other efforts to support personal sanitation include:
  • Sanitization Stations: Approximately 1,300 hand sanitizer dispensers will be installed in classrooms and common areas on the Las Cruces campus. Custodial teams will service the dispensers as part of the university’s daily cleaning program.
  • Supply Vending Machines: These will be located across campus and will contain hand sanitizer, latex gloves, reusable and disposable masks, safety glasses, disinfectant wipes and other items. These supplies are offered without charge to NMSU employees through a departmental PIN code. In addition to reusable masks purchased for and distributed to students at no cost by ASNMSU, Housing & Residential Life, Aggie Stampede, and other organizations and departments, reusable masks will also be available for purchase by students at select vending machines in Corbett Center Student Union, Aggie Express and the Activity Center.
Departmental Supplies and Facility Modifications Departmental supply orders from various vendors are available through AggieMart and Banner, with assistance from the Aggie Service Center. Business managers who do not have access to AggieMart may submit a COVID-19 Supplies Order Form to Space modifications are managed through Facilities & Services. Departments may also purchase the following types of items:
  • Freestanding barrier shields
  • Freestanding panel base workstation screen
  • Freestanding counter shield at a reception desks and check-in points
  • Freestanding desk screen
  • Moveable barrier

Students should be in touch with their academic advisor for all schedule changes. Academic Advising has moved to telephone and zoom advising. Registration will continue as normal. Visit to connect with your academic advisor and for more information. Graduate students should work with thier individual advisors. 

No, classes will continue through Dec. 11, but all classes will be fully online beginning Nov. 30.
No in-person exams or class meetings will take place after the Thanksgiving break.

Faculty have many options and are urged to reach out to the Teaching Academy as well as Academic Technology to discuss optimal assessment strategies for an online environment. Some faculty are electing to administer in-person final exams prior to the break and spend the last two weeks on other projects.

To facilitate virtual class meetings, all faculty should make sure their Canvas platform is enabled and that they know how to use Zoom. Any faculty member who needs a refresher course using these tools should immediately ask their department head about any assistance available in their college, and contact Academic Technology for support and access to training.

If a faculty member wants to administer a comprehensive closed book essay exam, students must have the necessary technology. Academic Technology’s Instructional Continuity (COVID-19) page includes information about what technologies students need. Faculty should have a plan for helping students get the access they will need if they do not already have their own equipment. Provide students with a list of resources to investigate, including whether they will need to use a computer lab rather than use their own equipment. Faculty and students should perform equipment and software checks in advance of the exam.
All synchronous online exams must be held at the time indicated on the final exam schedule.
Yes – with permission of department head and dean, and in accordance with any applicable public health ordinances.
No, offices that serve students in person must remain open.
Student employees working on campus should speak to their supervisor to determine whether they can work following the Thanksgiving break.
No, housing and dining facilities will be open and available for students during Thanksgiving Break and through the end of the semester.
No. Because housing, dining, and other services will still be open and available, no refunds or credits will be issued for students who choose to move out before the final two weeks of the semester.
Students (or employees) who travel outside of New Mexico will need to follow the latest travel restrictions and quarantine guidelines from the NM Department of Health, including self-quarantine for 14 days in most cases.
Aggie Student Life has socially distanced activities and events planned throughout the break in compliance with state public health orders. More information can be found on the Campus Events Calendar. For holiday meal options, contact Dining at to make arrangements.
Yes. As we plan for the spring 2021 semester, it’s clear that we must continue to be flexible and to make operational adjustments in response to the ongoing pandemic. The winter break has been extended by a few days and the Spring 20201 academic calendar will not include a traditional spring break. Please view the 2021 spring academic calendar for detailed changes.

Related communications: Spring Academic Calendar (Carol Parker, Provost) - Nov 2, 2020

Read the complete list of FAQ's about COVID-19 and NMSU Operations