Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

Curious what do to if you live with someone who tests positive with COVID-19?  Check out this graphic for additional information and what you need to do in terms of self-isolating and quarantining.  You can find additional information here from the CDC.


Click here for more information about RCTC’s shift to online-only delivery for classes and campus services


Free Community COVID-19 Testing Sites

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is concerned that people ages 18 - 35 are driving the state’s community spread of COVID-19 to record highs, many of them with no symptoms and no way of knowing they are positive. MDH believes the possibility of continued spread of the virus as young people visit family and friends for Thanksgiving poses a serious risk and urges all college and university students to get tested prior to the holiday or other opportunities to gather.

To make this possible, Governor Tim Walz and Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan announced a significant expansion in COVID-19 testing access, with the addition of more than a dozen new testing locations opening across the state over the next two weeks. All testing will be free and available to anyone who wants to be tested whether they have symptoms or not, and it will not require insurance. Please find the closest community testing sites to RCTC below as well as a link to additional information and other testing sites.

Closest Community Test Sites to RCTC for FREE COVID-19 Testing

Albert Lea

Albert Lea Armory

410 Prospect Ave., Albert Lea, MN, 56007

Nasal Swab Test

Dates: Dec. 1-5, 2020 | 12-6p.m.

Click to schedule appointment in Albert Lea



Winona Mall

1213 Gilmore Ave., Winona, MN, 55987

Saliva Test

Wednesday-Sunday | Wed-Fri 12-7p.m., S/S 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Click to schedule appointment in Winona


Free At-Home Saliva Tests

Click here to read more about this program and to request a test kit.

Click HERE to access the COVID-19 Self-screening tool.





If you have used the screening tool today and received this message: Based on your answers, you are NOT authorized to come on campus for classes or work,”  you should:

Based on Minnesota Department of Health guidance:

  • Self-isolate or quarantine immediately
  • Monitor your health, contact your healthcare provider as needed

You should also:

  • If you are a student:
    • Contact campus healthcare services or the COVID-19 contact below for further assistance
    • Contact your faculty members to inform them that you will not be attending class
  • If you are an employee, contact your supervisor or human resources
  • If you are a visitor, contractor, or vendor, inform your campus contact
  • Contact the campus COVID-19 contact,, for additional assistance (please do not send any health-related information to this email address)

Updated November 5, 2020

As part of RCTC’s commitment to provide students, faculty, staff and visitors with a safe learning and working environment, the RCTC Back-To-Campus Preparedness Plan serves as our guide for the gradual reopening of areas/services on campus. It is emphasized, however, that reopening, even in stages, will require ALL OF US to continue to practice social distancing and daily hygiene habits to reduce our risk of exposure to the COVID-19 virus. The plan is a living document and will be updated as new information and guidance is provided.  Stay safe, stay connected and stay healthy.



Hours of Operation

The RCTC campus will be following new hours of operation.  College business hours remain 8:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday, but campus buildings will be accessible to students and visitors following the schedule below.  Note: some areas such as the Goddard Library and RCTC Bookstore may have different hours than those listed here.

Monday-Friday Building and Accessible Door Open Close
Main Campus Atrium Door #13 6:30 a.m. 8:00 p.m.
Main Campus Memorial Hall Door #26 6:30 a.m. 8:00 p.m.
Heintz Center Door H8 6:30 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
Heintz Center Door H14 6:30 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
Sports Center Door S2 6:30 a.m. 10:00 p.m.
Saturday Building and Accessible Door Open Close
Atrium Door #13 7:30 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
Heintz Center Door H8 7:30 a.m. 6:00 p.m.
Sports Center Door S2 6:30 a.m. 10:00 p.m.
Sunday Building and Accessible Door Open Close
Atrium Door #13 9:00 a.m. 5:00 p.m.
Sports Center Door S2 6:30 a.m. 10:00 p.m.

Face Coverings Required:

RCTC requires individuals wear a face covering in indoor areas even when they are not within six feet of others. Masks are being distributed across the state to community organizations for distribution to the public.  Check out the Minnesota Department of Health website for a listing of those organizations.


Visit the Fall Semester Frequently Asked Questions page to clear up confusion you may have.



Rochester Community and Technical College holds as paramount the health, safety and welfare of every member of its community. RCTC, however, cannot guarantee a COVID-19-free environment. Unfortunately, the risk of COVID-19 exposure exists in all public places where people are present. The College is taking all recommended steps to mitigate this risk, but we cannot categorically guarantee you will not get sick. Minimizing the risk of COVID-19 infections (or any other spread of disease) at RCTC is a shared responsibility. Every member of our community – including you – must do their part. Understand that if you return to the physical campus of RCTC, there is a risk you may contract COVID-19 and that illness, injury or death is a possible result.



Yellowjacket Emergency Support Fund​

Consider making a donation, of any amount, to support RCTC’s YES Fund (Yellowjacket Emergency Support Fund). Your donation helps students with food, utilities, rent, medical/dental care, transportation and possible loss of employment income during the COVID-19 crisis.

Donate Online through the RCTC Foundation’s MightyCause donation site (choose Student Emergency Fund).


Campus and Community Support for Students

The College recognizes that this a difficult and unprecedented time which may be filled with uncertainty. Your safety, health, and well-being are our primary concern and we want to be able to support you in any way that we can. The College compiled a list of on-campus and community support for students.

We understand that at this time you may be facing some obstacles that would make it difficult to meet your academic goals. Please use this form to share if you have any concerns related to basic needs (housing, food, financial, medical, mental health, child care, etc.), clarification on official College communication, access to relevant technology, or information on campus services available at this time. After completing this form, you will be contacted by a staff member at the College as soon as possible to provide support and assistance.

You are not alone and we will navigate these challenges together. Yellowjackets take care of their hive!

Student Resources and Support for COVID-19


March 18, 2020 Update: Campus Hours | Rochester Public Transit

Campus Hours

The RCTC Campus will remain open with modified hours.  From March 20-29, 2020, campus hours are Monday-Friday (8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.) and closed on Saturdays and Sundays.

Rochester Public Transit

Effective Friday, March 20, Rochester Public Transit will suspend regular weekday transit service and RPT will begin operating reduced service as follows: Routes 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 and 26 (typical weekend holiday service) will begin operation seven days a week. Visit for social distancing protocol and an outline of service.


March 17, 2020 Update: Spring Commencement | Spring Sports Season | Athletic and Recreation Facilities | Student Health Services | Campus Visits

Spring Commencement

Effective immediately, and according to current Minnesota Department of Health and CDC guidelines, any campus-related gathering must have less than 50 people if social distancing can be adhered to. Meetings or gatherings where social distancing cannot be accommodated should be moved to a virtual environment, postponed, or cancelled.  In light of these recommendations, Spring in-person commencements at all Minnesota State colleges and universities, including RCTC, have been suspended, though many colleges and universities are preparing for alternative forms of celebration such as virtual commencement events.  Each college and university should be contacted for the latest information about their plans.

Spring Sports Season

The NJCAA has made the difficult decision to cancel all upcoming basketball championships as well as spring competition, effective immediately following the recommendations from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Athletic and Recreation Facilities

In following yesterday’s Executive Order of Governor Walz, all RCTC athletic and recreation facilities are closed effective March 17, 2020 until March 27, 2020. These facilities include the Bubble, the Rochester Regional Sports Center and all playing fields. Questions may be directed to the Sports Center Director, Michael Sheggeby at 507-285-7565 or

Student Health Services

Out of an abundance of caution, RCTC Student Health Services will not be open for in-person student visits during the extended Spring Break.

Students who are ill should contact their regular healthcare provider by phone or through their provider’s patient portal. Additionally, students may call 507-280-2887 during regular business hours, or email for information about obtaining medical evaluation. Please note that email replies may take up to one business day.

Appointments for other types of visits (TB skin tests, Health Assessments for academic programs, etc.) will be available at a later date. Students in programs that require these services (Nursing, Nursing Assistant, and Surgical Technology, etc.) can be assured that the deadlines for these requirements are being adjusted. Additional information about the new deadlines will be communicated to students as the current situation becomes clearer.

Students utilizing mental health counseling services can continue to receive the services either at an alternative site or via tele-therapy during the extended Spring Break. Please contact Zumbro Valley Health Center at 507-289-2089 or email for more information.

Campus Visits

All campus visits are cancelled. We will do our best to accommodate visit requests individually, but will limit the amount of guests that attend with the student.

Other Resource:


March 15, 2020 Update: Spring Break/Prep Week Expanded By Another Week

Minnesota State Chancellor Devinder Malhotra announced Sunday evening that all Minnesota State institutions will be extending their Spring Break by two weeks, rather than one week as previously announced. As such, RCTC classes are now scheduled to resume with alternative delivery modes on March 30, 2020. Given the enormity of the task at hand, this additional time is being given so faculty have enough time to complete their work in modifying their delivery methods. Additional information will be forthcoming on course delivery, scheduling, and other details.

Other Resource:

Update from Minnesota State Chancellor Devinder Malhotra


March 14, 2020 Update: Broadband Access for Students

For students who do not have broadband internet access at home, several service providers have created opportunities for college students to get free internet including installation.

For students in Rochester, Charter (Spectrum) Communications is offering: Free Spectrum broadband and WiFi access for 60 days in home with K-12 and/or college students that don’t have an existing Spectrum service level up to 100 Mbps.

Comcast is creating options for more wireless and data access for subscribers and non-subscribers, including free wifi hotspots nationwide for all and unlimited data for their subscribers.

We will continue to update this site with additional providers as soon as information becomes available.

Other Resources:


March 12, 2020 Update

Due to the increasing severity of the COVID-19 pandemic, and out of an abundance of caution for our students, employees, and community visitors, the difficult decision has been made to disrupt normal College operations. While these changes will cause disruption to our routines, they are necessary to ensure the health and safety of our campus community. Beginning immediately, the following changes and procedures will be in effect until further notice:

Spring Semester Classes

Spring break will be extended for an additional week concluding on Sunday, March 22, 2020. Beginning Monday, March 23, RCTC classes will resume utilizing alternative delivery formats. Specific plans will be finalized the week of March 16 and will be communicated to the campus community at that time.

Campus Operations

The RCTC campus is not closing.  All College faculty, staff, and administration will report to work during the week of March 16-22 to prepare for alternate course delivery methods. However, based on guidance from health officials and Minnesota State, RCTC will be implementing several operational changes including:

  • Regular operations, including prospective student campus visits and student support services, will remain open.
  • As directed by the System Office, out-of-state travel is suspended effective Monday, March 16, 2020.
  • All College-sponsored events with an anticipated attendance of 100 people or more are cancelled effective March 16, 2020.
  • All non-RCTC events and rentals are cancelled effective March 16, 2020.
  • Employees who are at-risk of infections or those who may infect others should seek alternative work spaces.  Please work with your supervisor to discuss options.

We truly appreciate everyone’s patience, cooperation, and flexibility during this period of uncertainty and upheaval. We are continuously monitoring the situation and working with public health experts to help keep our campus community prepared, informed, and protected.

Please watch your email, social media, and for additional updates.


Resources and information that you may find helpful

We are cooperating with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and are conveying their information and guidance related to COVID-19 to our colleges and universities. MDH and Minnesota State are working to develop regular communication channels to proactively address school-related topics with regard to COVID.

  • Information that MDH is making available for schools, colleges and universities is available at
  • At this time, MDH assesses the risk of becoming sick with COVID-19, including for people in Minnesota schools, as low, and is not recommending that events or extracurricular activities be cancelled. To date, there have been no positive cases of COVID-19 reported at any Minnesota State college or university or at the system office.
  • Encourage students and employees to:
    • Practice respiratory (coughing and sneezing) etiquette and hand hygiene
      • Stay at home when sick
    • Encourage supervisors and faculty to offer flexibly to employees and students who are sick, expressing symptoms of respiratory issues, or care for family members to the maximum extent possible.
    • Anyone in the U.S. who has not traveled to China or been in contact with someone confirmed or suspected to have COVID-19 in the last 14 days is at low risk of becoming sick with the virus
    • Cautioning all on actions and language against anyone based on race, ethnicity, or religion based on the origins of COVID-19.


Other Informational Resources

There are many sources of information on COVID-19 including state, national and international organizations.  Primarily sources for Minnesota State monitoring, planning, and response are:

Minnesota Department of Health (MDH):

COVID-19 Home:

For schools:


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

COVID-19 Home:



Facts about COVID-19
Facts about COVID-19
Symptoms of COVID-19
Symptoms of COVID-19
What to Do If Sick with COVID-19
What to Do If Sick with COVID-19


State Department (DOS):

Travel Information:


If you have any further questions or concerns regarding RCTC’s response plan for the COVID-19 virus, please do not hesitate to contact the office of RCTC’s Vice President of Finance and Facilities at 507-285-7214 or email Steve Schmall.