ISU President Dietz: ‘We are open for business’

Illinois State University President Larry Dietz said Dining facilities and university housing will be open, but with some restrictions. (Photo courtesy: ISU)

By Blake Haas

NORMAL – With Illinois State University announcing plans for a hybrid of face-to-face instruction and online classes for the 2020-21 school year, ISU President Larry Dietz said the University has created space for if a student gets COVID-19.

“We have some dedicated space that we have already talked about that for the students that are living on the campus. The off-campus housing areas the landlords are still trying to work on that. I think a lot of folks will try to say if a person is diagnosed, the best place for them to go is home in their own car by themselves or have a family member get them and take them home,” President Dietz told WJBC’s Scott Miller. “But, if a student is on the campus and does not have that opportunity and is ill with the virus, we have identified some space where we could quarantine those individuals and have food delivered to them.”

While the ‘Redbirds Return’ plan is ever-changing, President Dietz said he thinks face masks will be required on campus.

“The short is that I’m sure that they will, the longer answer is where and how long and I think we will have more definition about that probably sometime possibly still by the end of this week but certainly next week. I think that will be the new normal if you will, we will see a lot of face masks, and get to recognize people by what their eyes look like versus their whole face.

According to the ‘Redbirds Return’ plan, facilities such as the Bone Student Center, Student Fitness Center, and Milner Library will welcome the campus community. Dining facilities and university housing will be open, but with some restrictions.

“Our message is clear that yes, we are open for business. Business is going to look a little different than it did previously, but we’re certainly open and anxious to have them (students) back in the fall.”

Blake Haas can be reached at


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