An initiative started by the Association of Students of the University of Nebraska has led to the availability of four KN95 masks for every student, faculty and staff.
The masks, which are being provided through a partnership with the State of Nebraska, will be distributed to the University of Nebraska–Lincoln community starting Feb. 2.
• Undergraduates who live on campus can expect the masks to be distributed in their residence hall or Greek house.
• Graduate students not on an assistantship can pick up masks at the Office of Graduate Studies, 1100 Seaton Hall, from 8 to 5 p.m. weekdays.
• Undergraduate students living off campus can pick up four masks in the Nebraska and Nebraska East unions.
• Faculty, staff and graduate students on an assistantship can expect that masks will be delivered and distributed through colleges and units. Details on delivery will be available from supervisors or local leaders.
Distribution in the Nebraska Unions will mirror the operating hours of both locations. An NCard is required to obtain masks in the Nebraska Unions.
Mask availability was spurred by a request from the Association of Students of the University of Nebraska. The student government group had sought to obtain a limited number of masks for students, but as reported by the Daily Nebraskan, tabled a Jan. 26 bill to seek out ways to make a greater impact.
Taylor Jarvis, ASUN’s internal vice president and a student representative on the chancellor’s COVID-19 Task Force, contacted fellow task force members to explore other options to acquire masks. Task force members from Student Affairs and the Office of Research and Economic Development pursued multiple avenues, including reaching out to state officials.
“Taylor’s request and our throwing a Hail Mary to the state came together at the perfect time,” said Tony Rathgeber, associate to the vice chancellor in Student Affairs. “Our campus community now has access to 150,000 free KN95 masks. That should be enough to get us through this most current wave of COVID-19 infections.”
With proper care, each of the KN95 masks can be worn for up to five days (40 total hours). Details on caring for the masks are available here.
The four masks are in addition to those provided to instructors and support staff at the beginning of the spring semester.
The university is following a multi-layered approach to limit spread and protect the campus community from COVID-19. Learn more about the university’s the ongoing response to the global pandemic.