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Luna alters operations as COVID-19 fight rolls on

Classes continuing online; campus going virtual

In support of the state government’s new stay-at-home directives, Luna Community College will transition much of its operations online, effective immediately.

In a news conference Monday afternoon, March 23, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced stringent new measures to curtail the spread of COVID-19 in New Mexico. She instructed New Mexicans to remain in their homes or places of residence except for outings necessary for health, safety and welfare. Mass gatherings – now defined as five or more people sharing the same space, at least aside from family members occupying the same home – are prohibited. As of 8 a.m. Tuesday, March 24, businesses and organizations not deemed to be providers of essential services must have employees work remotely or close.

As of Monday, Luna students returned from an extended spring break to virtual classes. There will be no more face-to-face classes through the end of the semester. Virtual classes will continue through the end of the semester, with traditional face-to-face instruction classes not being held until conditions allow for them and restrictions are lifted.

A number of student services, including advisement and tutoring, will be available online to Luna students. Students are advised to call or e-mail offices as needed; faculty and staff will be checking for and returning calls and messages remotely. A full staff directory is available at

Luna has closed its campuses to students and the public until further notice. Access to the main campus will be restricted to employees deemed critical for campus operation until further notice.

“Our intention is to continue serving our students while doing our part to keep our communities safe from COVID-19,” said Dr. Rolando Rael, Luna president. “At least for the time being, that means converting to a virtual campus. We are asking everyone to be patient with us. We will e-mail or call back individuals as soon as possible as the vast majority of our employees will be working from home.”

The latest mandates issued by the governor and Secretary of Health Kathy Kunkel are designed to limit the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus), which has topped 83 confirmed cases in the state as of Monday afternoon.

“This social isolation strategy will only work if we all undertake it to the greatest extent we can,” Lujan Grisham said Monday. “That boils down to one thing: stay home.”

The order is in effect until April 10.

Luna will retain a minimal physical presence on campus, including a few administrative, facilities and security personnel, through the closure.