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Nevada colleges will require face masks starting Friday

Nevada’s public colleges and universities will require face masks for students, employees and visitors on campuses starting Friday.

In a memo released Tuesday night by the Nevada System of Higher Education, Chancellor Melody Rose wrote the requirement will apply to “all unvaccinated and vaccinated NSHE students, employees, and members of the public” while they’re inside a building on any higher education system campus or property.

“This new mandate may remain in effect until the vaccination rate increases and the level of COVID-19 transmissions decreases in Nevada’s high-risk counties,” Rose said.

It applies to all campuses statewide, with the exception of Humboldt and Lander counties where Elko-based Great Basin College operates satellite campuses.

The announcement comes after the state announced a new mask mandate Tuesday that requires everyone regardless of vaccination status to wear a mask in indoor public places in counties with elevated COVID-19 rates, including in Clark County. It followed a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendation.

The Clark County School District also announced Tuesday it’s requiring face masks for all students and employees.

NSHE students and employees aren’t required to wear a mask while they’re in non-public locations such as a private office or dorm room.

“Moreover, students and employees may continue to follow the guidance of their respective counties while in outdoor settings,” Rose said. “Currently, face coverings are not required in outdoor settings while on an NSHE campus or property.”

The face mask mandate won’t apply to NSHE athletic programs, Rose said. “Those programs may continue to follow the best practices and guidance of their respective conferences.”

The mandate also won’t apply to fully vaccinated performers or musicians while actively performing on an NSHE stage, she said.

Contact Julie Wootton-Greener at jgreener@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2921. Follow @julieswootton on Twitter.

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