UNDATED -- The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, which includes St. Cloud State University and St. Cloud Technical & Community College, is taking steps to blunt the spread of COVID-19.

Minnesota State Chancellor Devinder Malhotra announced Thursday via a news release the system will suspend classes for an extra week following spring break. Colleges and universities currently on break will return to campus on March 23. Those with spring break scheduled the week of March 16-20 will return on March 30.

Malhotra says residence halls, dining facilities and student support services will remain open and staffed, including those with student workers.

Minnesota State has also suspended all school-sanctioned out-of-state business travel for students, faculty and staff, effective March 16, and recommends careful consideration regarding in-state travel.

All Minnesota State events or gatherings with more than 100 people have been canceled until May 1 and will be reevaluated at that point, according to the release.

"The diversity of our student body and employees is one of our greatest strengths," writes Malhotra. "As such, we are committed to ensuring welcoming and supportive campus environments for all our students, faculty and staff. It is vitally important we work together, follow the practices recommended by public health officials, and proceed with preparedness, calm and understanding."

The system suspended all school and business-related international travel on February 28.

Minnesota State has created a COVID-19 related web page.

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