MSU Denver says no connection between employee cancers, West Classroom building

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DENVER– A release sent out on Monday morning from MSU Denver revealed that no connection was found between cancers identified in MSU Denver employees and the West Classroom building.

Based on visual observation, direct-reading meter monitoring and analytical results, the environmental parameters were within the typical ranges for occupied office buildings and well below the applicable regulatory limits.

According to the release, MSU Denver and Auraria Higher Education Center received test results from two independent companies.

The results were shared during a town hall meeting at King Center Monday afternoon.

The study was ordered after it was discovered four educators who worked in the West Classroom building had various kinds of cancer. One of the employees died.

Other MSU Denver staff and students with cancer have since said they also spent time in the building.

Dr. Michelle Tollefson’s breast cancer diagnosis was one of the four cancer diagnoses that prompted the testing.

“I appreciate it that [university leadership] took it very seriously,” she said.

Tollefson is an OB-GYN and associate professor at MSU Denver. She has been teaching at the campus for nine years.

She says she is not afraid to return to the West Classroom building.

“I have no reason not to believe the results or trust the results,” she said. “It seems like they did what was appropriate and brought in the experts.”

Tollefson says she hopes the conversation can shift to a discussion about what can be done to decrease the risk of getting cancer.

The full results of the investigation are available online.

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