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Plan for a Safe Campus Reopening

Campus Access

As part of our safe reopening plan, a limited number of Harvard students and personnel have been authorized to live and/or work on campus. Only those students and personnel who are authorized to have a regular on-campus presence and who are undergoing frequent viral testing are allowed to be on campus. If you’re in one of these groups, see Dorm & House Residence Requirements and Facilities, Office, & Lab Requirements. Please also review the latest guidance for on-campus activities at Harvard University.

Students and personnel living off campus should not come to campus for any reason unless approved by your School or Unit’s local leadership and/or manager. If they authorize you to come to campus, you must complete the following before entering any Harvard facility:

  1. Harvard Covid-19 Safety Awareness Training (one-time training)
  2. Crimson Clear (daily attestation)
  3. Wear a cloth face covering in compliance with Massachusetts’, Cambridge’s, and the City of Boston’s orders. This includes wearing a face covering in all indoor public places, businesses, and common areas/meeting rooms even when social distancing can be maintained. Massachusetts announced that as of April 30, you don’t need to wear a mask outdoors as long as you can maintain a distance of six feet from other people. Outdoors at Harvard, masks are no longer required if 6-food distancing is maintained. However, masks are required on campus when in gatherings (formal or informal) and when preparing to enter Harvard buildings and shuttles.

For more information, see Off-Campus Student and Staff Requirements.

Harvard’s Guiding Principles

Our plan for a phased reopening of on-campus activities is guided by two core principles:

  1. Health and safety: We will continue to prioritize the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff, and surrounding community in every decision we make
  2. Education and research: We are committed to ensuring that the teaching, learning, and research of our students, faculty, and postdoctoral fellows will continue at the highest levels of excellence. Every decision we make must be in service to this mission.

Massachusetts’s and Harvard’s Reopening

On May 18, Governor Baker announced a four-phase approach to gradually reopen Massachusetts. There are sector-specific protocols, including for reopening higher education.

Aligning with Governor Baker’s plan for the phased re-opening of the state, the University and individual Schools and Units are developing plans to gradually bring students, faculty, other academic personnel, and staff back to campus as conditions allow. Our University reopening plan is contingent upon public health data, high-frequency viral testing, enhanced cleaning and ventilation, symptom attestation, correct and consistent use of face coverings, handwashing, and full cooperation with contact tracing, isolation, and quarantine procedures.

Campus Status

Under current guidelines in Phase 3 of Massachusetts’ reopening plan, higher education institutions may allow individuals to return to campus in line with strict protocols for certain activities.

Academics: Harvard’s undergraduate, graduate, and professional Schools have made plans for fall 2020 and spring 2021 based on their own unique considerations. With few exceptions, learning will be remote, and only a limited population of students will be authorized to live on campus. For those returning to campus, see Dorm and House Residence Requirements.

Research: Limited research activities have resumed operation in scientific labs on campus. See the Facilities, Office, and Lab RequirementsReturn-to-Campus Work Guidelines for Researchers, and updated University workplace policies.

Workforce: Most Harvard faculty, other academic personnel, and staff should plan to continue to work remotely through June 30, 2021, unless directed otherwise by your local leadership and managers. As the Spring semester unfolds, Schools or Departments may ask individuals to return to campus for certain activities, in which case adequate advance notice will be provided. Individuals authorized to work on campus by their manager should review Facilities, Office & Lab Requirements and the updated University workplace policies.