Skip Sub Menu

Updates from Drake University

Please see below for Operational Updates, Leadership Messages, and Messages from the Dean of Students about the ongoing situation with COVID-19.

Background: In December 2019, the novel coronavirus COVID-19 began appearing in China, initially centralized in the Wuhan Province. Since that time it has grown into a global pandemic as recognized by the World Health Organization. The outbreak of this virus is impacting many facets of life around the world. This page provides information of use to the Drake University Community. 

Health and Safety Guidance

Drake continues to monitor this health situation and is in close contact with the Polk County Health Department on its guidance concerning the coronavirus for our area. Drake has an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and protocols should any response need to be enacted.  

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) issued an advisory, urging those returning from a country where the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is spreading to voluntarily self-isolate for 14 days following their return. In compliance with the IDPH guidance, we ask that you not return to campus and refrain from attending University events during the 14 day self-isolation period. The IDPH advises individuals returning from affected areas to monitor for possible symptoms, and to call a medical provider before visiting a clinic in person with concerns. You may also stay in touch with the Drake Student Health Center if you have questions, don’t have a primary care provider, or have a unique situation. 

We ask that any University community member who is self-isolating notify the University so we can provide support during your time away from campus. Your personal information will be treated sensitively and with appropriate confidentiality.

University Travel Suspension

Effective immediately, any travel outside of the state of Iowa on behalf of the University is suspended, unless deemed critical and approved by the senior administrator in your area. This policy applies to all University-sponsored travel, including international, academic, athletic, conferences and workshops, and research-related travel, and will continue through at least May 31, 2020. Please work through your direct supervisor, who will escalate the request to senior administration.

How has the University responded to the coronavirus pandemic?

The University has been engaged in contingency planning since the initial outbreak of coronavirus in Wuhan, China. University leaders from across campus have been meeting to discuss and plan for a range of possible scenarios. In addition, personnel from Drake’s Environmental Health and Safety department are in regular communication with local and state health officials and have been monitoring guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The health, safety, and well-being of our entire campus community—students, faculty, staff, visitors, and neighbors—is our top priority. To that end, please see the message sent by Provost Sue Mattison to campus on March 11, 2020 regarding short-term changes to academic course delivery and events.

How is the University keeping me informed and aware of its plans as the situation changes?

The University continues to send regular email updates to keep everyone in the campus community informed. In addition, please bookmark and review this webpage ( for the latest information.

Is the Drake University Bookstore open?

The bookstore is operating under reduced hours. Watch for updates in OnCampus as the academic year begins. You can shop online 24/7 at Select “pick up in store” to save on shipping. Bulldog Bucks work for online shopping, as well.

If you have summer rentals due, check-in is available in-store or you may ship your package to the University Bookstore (make sure to include your information in your package).

I'm hosting or attending an event on campus, should I cancel?

Gatherings pose unique risks. For that reason, on-campus events are canceled through at least Sunday, May 17, 2020. Organizers of previously scheduled events have been contacted. We will continue to monitor and assess the risk for any events beyond May 17.

Immigration Status and the Coronavirus

As this is an issue that affects many F-1/F-2 and J-1/J-2 students, scholars, and dependents across the U.S., we anticipate there will be some discussion and advocacy in the weeks to come about students and scholars from China whose immigration status is ending soon. It is difficult to predict what will happen and what immigration-related accommodations might be made, but we are actively monitoring official sources and will post and/or send messages when we have definitive information.

For current guidance, please see the FAQs below.

Is the University issuing refunds for parking passes?

No. Refunds are not issued for parking passes after the first day of the semester.

Questions? Contact us with any COVID-19 questions.