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Students will need to mask up in indoor academic instructional spaces for the first two weeks of the spring semester, Jan. 24-Feb. 4. Starting Saturday, February 5, mindful masking will be encouraged, but masks are no longer required in indoor academic instructional spaces. We ask that all members of the campus community practice mindful masking, and respect that many in the campus community will choose to continue to wear a mask at all times. We must honor and respect one another's decision to do so (or not).

What is Mindful Masking?

We ask that all members of the campus community respect one another's decision to wear or not wear a mask. Per the current CDC guidelines, CMU recommends students, faculty and staff:

  • Wear a mask in public indoor settings, especially in crowded settings when physical distancing cannot be maintained.
  • Maintain consistent and correct mask use as an additional layer of protection.
  • Understand that masks are not needed in most outdoor settings. However, wearing a mask is recommended in crowded outdoor settings and activities with close contact with others.
  • Wear a mask over your nose and mouth when utilizing forms of public transportation.
  • Designated employees who regularly interact with guests, visitors and/or customers are encouraged to wear masks when interacting with members of the public, and distancing cannot be achieved.

Please respect that many in the campus community will choose to continue to wear a mask at all times. It's also important to note that some of our colleagues will choose not to wear a mask. We must honor and respect one another's decisions. We encourage our campus community to be aware of those around you and please ask others about their comfort interacting with or without a face covering.

Types of Masks

Cloth Mask

Example of a cloth mask

Benefits

  • Containing large respiratory droplets and aerosols breathed out
  • Being worn consistently due to increased comfort
  • Increased protection of OTHERS compared to not wearing a mask
  • Can be washed and re-used

Drawbacks

  • Not designed to filter small aerosols
  • Reliant on a tight fit to improve source control and protection
  • Not as protective as an N95 respirator

Paper Procedure Mask

Example of a paper procedure mask

Benefits

  • Containing large respiratory droplets and aerosols breathed out
  • Being worn consistently due to increased comfort
  • Increased protection of OTHERS compared to not wearing a mask
  • Multiple layers of non-woven material can increase protection vs. not wearing a mask

Drawbacks

  • Not designed to filter small aerosols
  • Reliant on a tight fit to improve source control and protection
  • Not as protective as an N95 respirator
  • Cannot be washed and re-used

Respirators (N95, KN95)

Example of a KN95 mask

Benefits

  • Containing respiratory droplets and aerosols breathed out
  • Increased protection of OTHERS compared to not wearing a mask
  • Increased protection for YOURSELF compared to not wearing a mask
    • Can provide increased protection compared to cloth and procedure masks if the respirator has a good seal to your face
    • Varying levels of particle filtration by type of respirator

Drawbacks

  • Requires a tight fit and seal to the face to maximize protection
  • Can be more difficult to breathe in compared to other mask options
  • Often more uncomfortable than cloth or procedure masks
  • Cannot be washed and re-used