A Message to UConn About Plans for Fall 2020

The UConn sign in Storrs, lit up at night, with light steaks from passing traffic
Roughly 6,700 new students are part of UConn Nation this semester. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

To the UConn Community:

Earlier this year, the university communicated that a final decision about returning for the fall semester would be made before July 1. This month, the university posted its draft reopening plans online and more detailed plans were recently shared and discussed with the UConn Board of Trustees.

This message serves as official confirmation that UConn will reopen in the fall, as planned, with courses being offered in-person, online, or as a hybrid of the two. In keeping with state guidelines and gating conditions, very significant safety protocols and modifications will be implemented to help support the health of our community.

Please note that as new information becomes available we will be in contact again and we will update our reopening website.

For all students: on Monday you received a message from the Registrar indicating that we have begun the process of finalizing class schedules and re-registration where needed. This will be completed by late July. An FAQ on this process is available. While we will have more online courses than in a typical semester to balance safety and accommodate reduced classroom density, we are seeking to provide as many in-person classroom and out-of-classroom co-curricular experiences as possible.

Residential students: on Monday, new information regarding housing assignments, the residential calendar, and the quarantine period were posted here. Please also note that housing assignments will be completed no later than August 1 and move-in will begin on August 14. We will communicate directly with students on each of these issues.

Instructional updates for our faculty and graduate student instructors: we have been focusing our efforts on matching teaching preferences, availability of instructional spaces, and undergraduate student preferences for the fall semester. We are making good progress in meeting our goal of ensuring a rigorous UConn education for our students while balancing safety for everyone. We have now begun the process of finalizing class schedules for students.

Faculty and staff telecommuting/onsite work: reducing population density on campus while still fulfilling our mission is a key goal for the fall semester. There are a number of faculty and staff who need to be physically on campus to carry out their primary work of teaching, research, supporting students and facilities, and related activities, while others do not. Most employees who have been telecommuting since the spring should plan to continue to do so for the duration of the summer and during the fall semester 1) unless otherwise instructed by their supervisor to return to campus with at least two week’s notice where possible and 2) only when the employee’s primary functions are directly student-facing (exceptions will apply and may be authorized). Throughout the rest of the summer we continue to ask you to avoid coming to campus wherever possible to limit population density. If you need to come to campus, you should contact your manager, department head and/or dean. HR will distribute protocols next week to address managers’ and divisional requirements regarding telecommuting continuation and return to work procedures.

Testing: all residential students must be tested upon returning to the Storrs and Stamford campuses two weeks before the first day of classes. The university is currently evaluating testing needs and potential protocols for faculty, staff, and commuter students and no final determination has been made. The university is relying on guidance from Connecticut state government, guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and other public health and infectious disease experts. Once a decision with respect to testing has been made for faculty, staff and commuter students, the university will announce it.

Thank you for your continued patience and flexibility during this unusual time. More communications will be forthcoming.