Dear Students, Faculty, Staff and Parents,
Today, we learned from the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District that a student within our Baylor community has tested positive for COVID-19 (coronavirus). As I shared with you yesterday, two of our faculty members also have tested positive. These cases are all travel-related. I know this news is difficult to hear and deeply unsettling to all of us, and unfortunately, we anticipate that we will have additional positive cases during the days and weeks ahead as COVID-19 continues to spread across the country.
The student returned to Waco after traveling out of state to an area with high community transmission, but self-isolated away from the Baylor campus. Our faculty members also did not return to the Baylor campus and have been in self-isolation since traveling home. Let us all join together and continue to pray for the current health and recovery of these members of our Baylor Family, as well as the thousands of others around the country and world who have been impacted by this terrible virus.
It’s important that we all understand how public health officials handle positive cases. Individuals identified as having had potential exposure to the new Baylor-related COVID-19 cases will be directly notified by public health officials in coordination with the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District. To follow the number of cases diagnosed in Waco and McLennan County, please visit the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District website. Also, please continue to check Baylor’s COVID-19 website for the latest information.
With one confirmed case today and six others announced yesterday in Waco and McLennan County, it is very clear that this health crisis is real, and it is impacting our city and Baylor community. We must continue to do everything we can to strengthen our personal health protection and heighten our social distancing practices, as well as follow the instructions of federal, state and local officials.
Note that COVID-19 affects all age groups – even college-aged students – and the social distancing guidelines are for the health and welfare of everyone. And more specifically for our students – Please do not congregate in groups or large gatherings either in Waco or in your permanent hometowns.
Each of you are constantly in my prayers, and I am deeply grateful for how our Baylor Family has come together to support one another. May we all continue to be vigilant and sustained by our God of grace, peace and hope as we all navigate these challenges in the days and weeks ahead.
Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.