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Stories and information in our region on the COVID-19 pandemic.

Here Are The New COVID-19 Rules For Universities Reopening In Connecticut, Long Island

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Universities across the country are reopening for the spring semester following sending students home after Thanksgiving in response to skyrocketing COVID-19 infection rates.

In general, more classes are being held online to prevent the spread of coronavirus. For in-person classes, classroom sizes have reduced capacity; everyone is required to wear masks; and increased testing of staff and students is required.

Many colleges have also eliminated their spring break with a later start to the semester, on-or-near February 1.

Here are some Connecticut and Long Island university reopening policies:


Fairfield University

  • Fairfield University is using a daily health monitoring questionnaire through its LiveSafe app.
  • Students, faculty and staff are required to fill it out before arriving on campus.
  • Residential students will move back to campus in two phases with students being assigned move-in dates.
  • A negative COVID-19 test is required at least five days in advance of the planned move in date to returning to campus. All students will be tested on a pre-designated schedule prior to returning to classroom instruction.
  • Online classes will begin on Monday, January 25, and in-person learning will resume on Monday, February 8.
  • Fairfield will not observe President’s Day in February.
  • There will be twice weekly surveillance testing of 5-10% of the community.

Quinnipiac University

  • Quinnipiac University has implemented a hybrid course model called Q-Flex.
  • Some courses now involve augmented reality. For instance, anatomy and physiology students can work with digital cadavers remotely.
  • Students are expected to sign a pledge that asks, among other things, that they use an app to record their symptoms every day.
  • Students should have received an at-home test kit to take before their return to campus date.
  • Upon returning to campus, students will be tested by the university through its on-campus testing program before attending in-person classes.
  • Quinnipiac plans to test 15% of students every week and can generate results in about an hour on campus.

Sacred Heart University

  • All Sacred Heart University students (undergraduate and graduate) must provide negative test results taken within five business days of arrival to campus.
  • Daily health screening is required on the CampusClear app.
  • All undergraduate students returning to campus, both residential and nonresident, will participate in a cautionary quarantine until the start of on campus classes on February 8. All students must self-quarantine at home for 7-10 days before coming to campus.
  • There will be designated outdoor mask-free spaces for socially distanced meet-ups.
  • Students and faculty are required to wipe down their spaces in classrooms both before and after use.
  • Sanitizing wipes will be available outside classrooms.
  • Overnight guest stays and visitors from outside the university are not allowed in an effort to “minimize the number of non-Sacred Heart related people who come to campus.”
  • All students can choose to stay home and take only online classes.

Sacred Heart University is the licensee of WSHU Public Radio.

Southern Connecticut State University

  • About 64% of classes this fall will be held online. The rest are in-person or hybrid.
  • SCSU will provide the campus community with five face masks apiece, and offer extra masks at central campus locations if needed.
  • If SCSU decides to move the campus online, the university will alert the campus community within 24 hours.
  • Students living in residence halls are permitted one guest per room. West Campus Suites residents are allowed two guests per suite.

U.S. Coast Guard Academy

  • The Coast Guard Academy is testing 20% every week through surveillance testing through COVID-19 tests using their labs. On campus equipment, including a 3D printer, will create swabs.
  • Cadets will take home saliva COVID-19 testing kits before returning to campus.
  • Classes are most likely hybrid, but the academy intends to have their corps on campus.
  • The campus is closed to all visitors until further notice.

University of Bridgeport

  • Students must test negative for COVID-19 preferably within 72 hours of arriving on campus, but no more than 14 days before arrival.
  • 5-10% of all University community members will be tested randomly throughout the semester.

University of Connecticut

  • UConn students had to be tested for COVID-19 and submitted results by January 14. Students will be tested upon arrival.
  • UConn has asked students to maintain immunizations and get a flu vaccine.
  • No guests are allowed in on-campus residences. On-campus residents may gather in common spaces while wearing masks, and practicing social distancing.
  • Spring break will be moved to April 11 through April 17. Following the break, students will be sent home and the last two weeks of classes, and exams, will be remote.

University of New Haven

  • All university community members returning to campus will be required to obtain a negative result from a COVID-19 test within 5 days of their return to campus.
  • All on-campus individuals must wear masks that are at least 2-ply fabric and tight fitting across the nose and mouth.
  • The University of New Haven is requiring daily wellness checks for all persons coming to campus via CoVerified app.
  • Some classes will be recorded and live-streamed while 50% of the class attends each session.

Yale University

  • All students are required to sign the Yale Community Compact, which outlines health and safety guidelines. Under these guidelines, students are required to commit to regular COVID-19 testing and cooperate with contact tracers.
  • Students will be required to take a pre-arrival test and follow testing and quarantine protocols upon arrival.
  • Five break days will be distributed throughout the semester to decompress the pace of the spring and the elimination of spring break. Students must remain in Connecticut on their days off.
  • Sophomores, juniors and seniors are invited to live on campus or in the New Haven area during the spring semester. First-years are encouraged to continue their studies remotely.
  • All courses will be available to take place remotely.


Adelphi University

  • Adelphi plans to train community members on how to properly use and discard PPE.
  • Students must submit a negative test taken within 72 hours of their planned return date.
  • Adelphi has replaced five days of Spring Break in March with five non-consecutive days off throughout the semester.
  • Sharing face masks is not allowed.
  • In-person classes will also stream lectures, for students who can’t attend.
  • Residence halls will operate under 10% capacity “to allow for social distancing and allocation of a floor for temporary quarantine and isolation.”

Hofstra University

  • Students must show evidence of a negative test result taken within three days prior to return, unless they show documentation of a positive test result from the prior three-month period.
  • Students are required to wear masks on campus. Eating and drinking are not allowed in classrooms. If a student refuses to wear a mask in class or breaks the eating/drinking rule, they will be withdrawn from the course for the semester.
  • Students may reserve desks on campus to take their online classes.
  • All students and employees must complete a four-question health survey via the University portal before coming to campus or attending class.

LIU Post

  • Resident student move-in will take place on January 30-31 for students residing in New York State or a non-impacted state. Students from impacted states moved in on January 14-15 for their 14-day quarantine.
  • LIU Post community members must complete the COVID Self-check app prior to students coming to campus each day.
  • No overnight guests are permitted in residence halls. Only double or single rooms are available this fall to limit density.
  • LIU campuses plan to “resume in-person classroom instruction with social distancing protocols in place whenever practical.”
  • Classrooms have been adapted to reduce crowd density, and students who can’t attend in-person lectures will be able to tune in through lecture capture or Zoom.

Stony Brook University

  • All new and returning resident students need to submit a negative COVID-19 test within 14 days of their scheduled arrival and bring it with them the day they move in.
  • Stony Brook University has adopted a hybrid model of instruction. Only smaller classes will be held in-person, and they’ll be held in larger classrooms to allow for social distancing.
  • The university has advised students to carry their own hand sanitizer, as well as hand sanitizer stations available at building entrances.
  • All students on campus — both commuters and residents — are required to conduct a daily health screening
  • All Stony Brook community members will be provided with two washable face masks. PPE will also be available in vending machines around campus.

Suffolk County Community College

  • Students who are on-campus will be required to complete a seven-day precautionary quarantine and must provide a negative COVID-19 test result within three days prior to their return.
  • Both mandatory testing for students and remorse instructional delivery will continue for the spring semester.
  • Students must complete a daily confidential return-to-campus health screening questionnaire every day, prior to arriving on-campus.
  • Libraries will be open by appointment only for students to access computer labs.
  • The college has expanded outdoor wireless access to parking lots on all campuses, and will offer 100 internet hotspots.
  • Spring break will be canceled and the spring semester will end a week earlier.
Clare is a former news fellow with WSHU Public Radio.