Friday, Aug. 13, 2021

Dear UNT Community,

As we prepare for our full return to the in-person, campus experience, I know many in our community are concerned over the COVID-19 Delta variant and any impact to the fall semester. I share your concern, which is why we are moving forward with new safety measures knowing there are limitations because of current state mandates.

With COVID-19 cases on the rise again, especially among those who remain unvaccinated, I request that all students, faculty, and staff comply with a new mandate from the City of Denton to wear a face covering indoors per CDC guidance for our region.

If you are not vaccinated, I urge you to do so as soon as possible to protect yourself, your friends and family, and our campus. Vaccines reduce the chance of experiencing severe impacts from COVID-19 and minimize transmission of the disease.

To further protect the UNT community, we are implementing the following measures (NOTE: All forms, uploads, and required instructions referenced below are expected to be available via a link at the top of by Wednesday, Aug. 18):

Mandatory Testing All students, faculty, and staff will be required to have a COVID-19 test at designated intervals throughout the fall semester, with the first testing interval being Aug. 16 - Sept. 10. Additional testing intervals will be determined and announced. Vaccinated individuals can opt-out of the mandatory testing requirement by uploading proof of vaccination by Sept. 10.

Testing is available in the Union through Curative, as well as the Student Health and Wellness Center. More testing information can be found here. All on-campus tests will be automatically shared with UNT, but tests from off-campus sites must be uploaded.

If you have already uploaded vaccine information as part of the UNT Vaccine Incentive Program, you will soon receive an email asking permission to use your prior proof of vaccine to opt-out of the testing requirement. If you contracted COVID-19 in the past 90 days, you also will be allowed to opt-out from testing until the 90-day period expires, but you must upload your positive test result. Learn how you can receive one of the approved COVID-19 vaccinations and participate in the UNT Vaccine Incentive Program.

Mandatory Self-Reporting Students, faculty, and staff will continue to be required to report symptoms and exposure to, quarantine as necessary, and cooperate with the UNT COVID-19 Contact Tracing Team. Learn more at

Disciplinary Actions for Non-Compliance Students who fail to comply with the mandatory COVID-19 testing and reporting requirements will go through the Student Conduct Process. This may result in being considered a student not in good standing. A status of "not in good standing" means a student is not fully eligible to participate in university activities and privileges or faces possible separation (i.e. suspension or expulsion) from the university.

Faculty and staff who do not comply with mandatory COVID-19 reporting and testing requirements will receive a verbal warning for noncompliance. A subsequent violation will result in a written memo of noncompliance and the faculty or staff member will become ineligible for merit this year. The written memo will also be placed in their personnel file, and the employee will be subject to other, more severe, disciplinary action as appropriate in accordance with university policies 06.025, Faculty Misconduct and Discipline and 05.033, Staff Employee Discipline and Involuntary Termination.

For On-Campus Students All students living in on-campus housing have been instructed to develop an action plan in the event they are required to isolate or quarantine due to a positive COVID-19 diagnosis or exposure. Residents who test positive for COVID-19 will need to isolate at an off-campus location for 10 days. UNT is not providing a location for students to complete either quarantine or isolation and will not cover any associated expenses.

Despite the challenges of the past 17 months, I am very proud of the way we have worked together to serve our students and live our mission of being a caring community. I ask that you maintain that commitment and remain diligent as we continue to navigate this ever-evolving situation.

UNT Proud,
Neal Smatresk