Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

Rochester Community and Technical College strongly encourages every member of our campus community to get vaccinated against COVID-19 (including booster vaccines when appropriate).  Please help us keep our campus safe, healthy, and COVID-free.  Click here to order a free at-home COVID-19 test.  Be sure to use your home address.

March 11, 2022 Update–Mask Requirement Announcement

Today the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated the COVID-19 Community Levels, moving Olmsted County from a high community level to a medium community level.  Because of this new designation, effective Friday, March 11, 2022, RCTC will lift the face covering (mask) mandate everywhere on campus except in our healthcare and clinical settings (i.e., Student Health Services, dental clinic, etc.)   Although there is no longer a mask requirement in the rest of the buildings, anyone wishing to wear a face covering while in a classroom, office, or other areas are more than welcome to do so, but departments and individuals outside of those exceptions cannot require masks in their areas.


If you test positive, click here for additional information, and be sure to report your positive test to RCTC Student Health Services here.



Click here to view the Minnesota State COVID-19 Reporting Dashboard


Click here to see additional information from Minnesota State.

December 2, 2021 Update

As our Fall Semester comes to a close and we prepare for an extended holiday break and the beginning of Spring Semester, we must continue to be vigilant in our efforts to keep our campus community safe and healthy.  As we have previously communicated, COVID-19 cases in Olmsted County continue to be very high.  While we have been fortunate that our on-campus COVID exposures have been very rare, we must do what we can to prevent the spread of COVID to those who learn, work, and visit on our campus.  We strongly encourage our campus community to get a COVID-19 vaccine and vaccine booster.  You can find a free vaccine clinic location here or contact your healthcare provider for your options.

We also remind our campus community to be mindful of COVID-19 symptoms, and to take all the necessary precautions should you begin to feel ill.  If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, please stay home, contact your healthcare provider, and get tested for COVID-19:

  • fever
  • cough
  • shortness of breath
  • chills
  • headache
  • muscle pain
  • sore throat
  • fatigue
  • congestion or runny nose
  • loss of taste or smell

For additional symptom information, please click here.

Should you get a positive test, follow your healthcare provider’s instructions, stay home, and notify your supervisor or RCTC Student Health Services of your absence and test result (for contact tracing purposes).  Additional information about positive tests and getting sick can be found here.

November 17, 2021 Update

As you are probably aware, COVID-19 cases in Olmsted County and our region continue to rise at an alarming rate.  As we head into our Thanksgiving break, we want to make sure everyone does what they can to help keep themselves safe—and to prevent spreading COVID-19 when back on campus.


The easiest way to significantly reduce your risk of getting infected is to get a free COVID-19 vaccine.  Click here to find a vaccination clinic location.  You can also make appointments through your healthcare provider.  For those of you who have already received your vaccinations, many of you are now eligible for COVID-19 booster vaccines.  Talk to your health care provider about your risk, the need for a booster dose, and any questions about mixing and matching doses. For more information, click here.


For those of you traveling this Thanksgiving, there is a possibility you may bring COVID-19 with you if you have had contact with someone with COVID-19 before you leave, or bring it back with you while traveling. It is important to remember the following:


  • Follow appropriate face covering recommendations and requirements.
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others as much as possible.
  • Wash your hands a lot or use hand sanitizer.


If you experience any COVID-19 symptoms, please isolate yourself and get tested.  There are several free testing options available, and your healthcare provider may also offer the service.  If you receive a positive test, please notify RCTC Student Health Services (students) or your supervisor (employee) so the College can begin any necessary contact tracing actions.


You can always find current RCTC COVID-19 information at


Thank you all for your continued diligence in keeping our campus community healthy and safe.


August 3, 2021 Update

Effective Wednesday, August 4, 2021, all individuals (students, faculty, staff, contractors, visitors, etc.) are required to wear a face covering when indoors on the RCTC Campus or in a state vehicle when traveling with another person, regardless of a person’s vaccination status.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance on masking recommends masks be worn indoors in any county where the COVID transmission rate is shown to be substantial or high. Olmsted County (and several surrounding counties) recently moved from moderate to substantial; thus, RCTC believes it is in everyone’s best interest to reinstitute a face covering requirement. Masks or other facial coverings are not required outdoors. This face covering requirement will remain in effect until further noticed. If you need a face covering, please go to the Welcome and One-Stop Center for a free RCTC-branded mask.

According to CDC, the Delta variant appears to be much more easily transmitted and wearing masks or other facial coverings indoors have shown to help slow that transmission. In addition, MDH Commissioner Jan Malcolm shared during yesterday’s press call that masking alone is not enough protection against the Delta variant; hence a critical need to get vaccinated. Please go to COVID-19 Vaccination Registration ( to locate the closest clinic near you.

Our focus remains on protecting the health and safety of all that come to our campus and supporting our students as you progress down your educational paths. Thank you for your patience and flexibility as we continue to adjust our campus plans to focus on these priorities.

Rochester Community and Technical College strives to offer a safe, clean, and welcoming learning and working environment.  While most COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted, RCTC remains diligent in our efforts to reduce the risk of members of our campus community transmitting or contracting the virus.  We continue to strongly encourage members of our campus community to get vaccinated to help mitigate the on-going threat of infection.  Please visit the State of Minnesota COVID-19 Vaccine Locator to find a vaccine provider near you.

Thank you all for your continued flexibility and patience during these challenging times.  Lifting of this requirement is a positive step forward toward normalcy, but we must continue to remain diligent in our safety precautions and procedures to ensure we provide a welcoming and safe campus environment to learn and work.


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 at


Free At-Home Saliva Tests

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


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.