Spartans Respond with MI COVID Alert

MSU President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D. recently encouraged the Spartan community to help slow the spread of COVID-19 by downloading the MI COVID Alert exposure notification app. The app, which uses secure Bluetooth low energy technology to detect nearby phones of other app users, can notify individuals when they may have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for the virus. President Stanley reminded students that downloading the app was an important step in efforts to bring the community back together on campus.

Spartans heard the call and responded in a big way. University officials set an aggressive goal of 20,000 downloads at MSU within 30 days of the launch and 8,000 downloads across greater Ingham county during the same time period. Since the app launched on October 15, 2020, MSU students, faculty, staff and residents of Ingham County have downloaded the app more than 46,000 times, and the number continues to rise.

“Our success with the app is a testament to the commitment of the Spartan community and the residents of Ingham County,” said Professor Shawn Turner who is leading the app pilot project for MSU. “Spartans want to do their part to slow the spread of this virus and they want to protect the people they care about. Downloading the app helps them do that.”

The overwhelming response from MSU and Ingham County residents led officials at the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to accelerate plans for a statewide launch of MI COVID Alert. Starting today residents in communities all across the state can download the app on IOS and Android devices and get early notification of potential exposure to COVID-19.

“I anticipate that we will see Michiganders downloading the app all across the State,” Turner said. "It’s simple to use, and if people follow the detailed instructions regarding what to do after a potential exposure, it will help slow the spread of this virus.”

Several other states including Virginia, New York and North Carolina have all launched exposure notification apps, but MSU is one of just a few universities to pilot an app prior to a statewide launch. The MSU pilot will continue to run through the end of 2020. All Spartans are encouraged to download the MI COVID Alert app.