All campuses closed at noon March 17, 2020

TRAVERSE CITY — Due to the confirmation of two COVID-19 cases in the region, Northwestern Michigan College today closed all five of its campuses in Traverse City to all but essential employees for two weeks, through at least March 31.

 “Local cases are a trigger event we identified that would necessitate the closing of the college, to be consistent with public health protocols and to ensure campus and community health and safety,” President Nick Nissley said. “All staff, except ‘essential employees’ will be sent home at noon today.”

Faculty are essential employees and will continue teaching their classes virtually, with no course/lab work permitted on campus. On March 13 NMC announced it would shift face-to-face classes to distance learning beginning March 16. That transition is expected to be complete by Friday, March 20. Virtual learning will continue through April 27.

Non-essential employees are considered non-reporting /on call. Nissley assured college employees the closure will not affect compensation.

“No matter how you are categorized, you will be compensated. This includes all part-time and student workers. We will be monitoring the situation and will reassess at the end of March,” he said.

Today’s decision expands steps already taken. The Dennos Museum Center closed March 14 through April 6. Major NMC events for the next two months are canceled, including the NMC Barbecue originally scheduled for May 17. See a complete list of canceled events here.

“This is an extraordinary step, but working with our partners in health care and public safety, we are convinced it is necessary,” Nissley said.

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Release date: MARCH 17, 2020

For more information:

Diana Fairbanks
Executive Director of Public Relations, Marketing and Communications
(231) 995-1019 (o)
(231) 392-6082 (mobile)


Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions.