Fall semester begins at South Dakota’s public universities


College students across KELOLAND are back on campus.

Classes started Wednesday at South Dakota’s public universities.

Kayla Mentele is excited to be back on Dakota State University’s campus, after finishing the spring semester online due to the pandemic

“I feel like I learn a lot better when I can be face to face and have other classmates to interact with as well,” DSU Senior Kayla Mentele said.

Mentele’s friend Susan Jensen is kicking off the semester as a sophomore.

“I was a little nervous going back, but there’s a lot of safety procedures that we are following,” DSU Sophomore Susan Jensen said.

For now, public universities in South Dakota are operating at level 3 of the Board of Regents’ face covering protocols, which means face coverings are required in public indoor spaces on campuses.

“Seems like everyone’s cooperating pretty well. Everyone’s got a mask. Everyone’s following the rules, so it’s going pretty smooth,” DSU Senior Marcus Vanden Bosch said.

Mentele graduates in December.

She hopes she gets to stay on campus as long as possible as she finishes up here degree.

“I know it’s a very fluid situation and nobody really knows what’s going to happen, but I’m positive we’ll be able to finish out the semester strong,” Mentele said.

Under the level 3 protocol, a university president can make an exemption for face coverings if they are impractical for an activity or setting.

The level 3 status will be reviewed in about a month’s time.

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