Topeka, Kan. – Washburn University sent the following message to all students, faculty and staff earlier this morning informing the university community that masks will be required for indoor spaces starting Monday, August 9, 2021:


To the Students, Faculty and Staff of the Washburn Community:

We have all worked diligently through the pandemic to protect the health and safety of our community.  As a result, we have had relatively few cases of COVID-19 at Washburn.  We have consistently relied upon the CDC and the Shawnee County Health Department guidance during this time to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

In reviewing recent guidance and the fact the Delta variant is widespread in our community, we determined that some continued precautions will be necessary to ensure and maintain our traditional in-person classroom and campus experience.

Vaccines: We strongly encourage everyone to get one of the vaccines.  The vaccines are available in our student health clinic for free, as well as in numerous locations around Topeka and throughout the state.

Masks: We will require the use of masks beginning August 9 while indoors regardless of vaccination status with some limited exceptions <See Covid Webpage for exceptions>  Masks are not required if a person is alone in workspaces and offices.  Masks are optional but strongly recommended in outdoor public spaces where social distancing is not possible.

If you are unable to wear a mask, you can seek an individual accommodation through the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (for students) or Human Resources (for faculty and staff.)

A reminder that those students living in the residence halls will be required to present proof of vaccination or a recent negative COVID test in order to move in.  If you don’t have one of the two required documents, we will send you to the Student Health Clinic for a test prior to move in.

This mask policy will be reviewed weekly and will be updated and/or rescinded as appropriate. We hope these requirements will be temporary.  The best way to assure that is temporary is to get vaccinated and encourage everyone who is able to do the same.

Thank you again for your commitment to creating a healthy learning and working environment.   The COVID page on the Washburn University website ( will be updated with new information as it is received.  If you have a question that is not covered on the site, please email and you will receive a response as quickly as possible.

The COVID-19 Steering Committee


For further information, contact:Patrick M. Early, APR
Director of Public Relations
Telephone: (785) 670-1711
Cell: (717) 385-1119


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