Cover Your Face & Practice Hygiene

Cover Your Face

For the health and safety of our community, all members of our community must wear a face covering or mask over their nose and mouth while on campus, and there will be no exceptions to this rule. Face coverings or masks are required unless you are alone in your office or residence hall room, with the door closed. 
If you do not have a face covering when you arrive on campus, we will have a limited number available. Anyone requesting a mask accommodation for a documented medical condition should contact either SAIC’s Disability and Learning Resource Center (if you are a student) or Human Resources (if you are a faculty or staff member) to discuss types of coverings that may meet their needs.

Appropriate use of face coverings is critical for minimizing risks to others near you. It is possible to spread COVID-19 to others even when you do not feel sick, making face coverings an indispensable component of protecting our community. Continue to maintain six feet between yourself and others, as face coverings are not a substitute for social and physical distancing.

Recommended Face Coverings 

Washable cloth face coverings or disposable single-use masks are recommended for our community, and can be either handmade or purchased. There will be a limited supply of disposable single-use masks at security desks for those who misplace their face coverings. 
Additional guidance on how to properly wear, remove, and care for face coverings and masks is shared below.

Prohibited Face Coverings

  • Bandanas and neck gaiters which are less effective than other coverings
  • Masks with a relief valve as it compromises the integrity of the mask and can allow germ-carrying droplets to escape

Please note, N95 respirators continue to be reserved for healthcare workers at this time, and should only be used on campus for specific tasks, as identified by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), based on a hazard assessment.

In addition to the pack of five face masks we provided all community members, we are also able to provide face shields and medical-grade masks for faculty members upon request. The masks are one-time use only and the face shields will need to be cleaned by the faculty member after each use. If you would like to request masks or face shields, please email For the face masks, we will be able to issue a two-week supply at a time.

Putting on Face Coverings and Masks

Always wash your hands with soap and water or hand sanitizer prior to handling your face covering or disposable mask. In donning your covering or mask, ensure you cover your nose and mouth. If your face covering has a wire above the nose, form the wire to create a close fit, starting at the top of your nose and then moving down and out to the sides of your face.

Wearing Face Coverings and Masks

While wearing your face covering or disposable mask, avoid touching the front of the covering/mask. As we breathe throughout the day, the front of our face coverings and masks can become contaminated with germs and viruses. By avoiding touching this area you avoid contaminating your hands.

Removing Face Coverings and Masks

When taking off a face covering or disposable mask, avoid touching the front of the covering/mask and instead handle it by the straps or loops. Take care to avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Place disposable masks immediately into a trash container. Place washable face coverings immediately into the wash or into a bag to wash later. Wash your hands with soap and water immediately after handling your used covering/mask.

Caring for Face Coverings and Masks

Clean face coverings or new disposable masks should be stored in a clean bag or container. Washable cloth face coverings should only be used for one day, and must be washed after use. Laundry detergent and warm/hot water is recommended. These face coverings should be replaced immediately if soiled, damaged, or visibly contaminated.
Disposable masks can only be used for one day and must be placed in the trash. If the disposable mask becomes soiled, damaged, or visibly contaminated, it should be removed and replaced with a new mask.

Practice Hygiene 

Personal hygiene, particularly cleaning your hands, is a powerful way to curb the spread of viruses; furthermore, our potential for viral transmission in our shared spaces can be significantly reduced through simple cleaning procedures. Everyone on campus is expected to help by practicing personal hygiene and cleaning up after themselves.

Handwashing and Personal Hygiene

Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol. Thoroughly cover the surface of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
Hand sanitizer has been deployed at all campus entrances, classrooms, and common areas. Please frequently utilize this resource. If you have a personal travel-size bottle of hand sanitizer, you are encouraged to refill it from any of the gallon-sized containers throughout campus.
Finally, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands, and practice respiratory etiquette by covering all sneezes and coughs.

Disinfecting Shared Spaces

Act as if everything you come in contact with is contaminated. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces throughout the day, including all studio supplies and tools, and all shared resources. Housekeeping efforts across campus have been modified to target high-touch areas, but housekeeping cannot be everywhere all the time. We must all share the responsibility to disinfect our campus.
Campus Sanitation Kits are located in all classrooms, common areas, and office cores. The materials in these kits should be utilized for personal disinfection efforts. Students, faculty, and staff should regularly disinfect their work surfaces. Students, and anyone utilizing a shared workspace, should disinfect tables and desks before sitting down and again before leaving. Pay particular attention to frequently touched surfaces and objects like phones, switches, pens, handles, and buttons in disinfecting.
All community members are encouraged to maintain tidy work/making spaces and to put away anything that can be contained in a cabinet or storage container. Fewer objects and papers on surfaces eases cleaning and disinfection efforts.