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Northwestern's Status at a Glance

School and Unit Return to Campus Plans

  • On July 10, Northwestern announced the move to Step 4 (Summer Stabilization) in our phased Return to Campus Plan.
  • Campus buildings will be activated on a pre-determined schedule based on campus regions, but faculty and staff should not regularly return to their building until instructed to do so as part of approved school or unit Return to Campus Plans, with an exception for brief visits to pick up items that are needed to work remotely.
  • Coordination is key to managing campus occupancy levels (as of July 10, 50% of normal levels in Evanston and 25% in Chicago), so all schools and units are asked to prepare or update their Return to Campus Plan to prioritize student-facing and research-facing functions. Schools and units can find a planning toolkit on the COVID-19 and Campus Updates
  • Schools and units should be in “fall operations mode” no later than August 24 to support our growing on-campus population, which increasingly will include students.
  • All faculty and staff returning to campus need to complete the COVID-19: Returning to Campus Training, or the research-specific version, available in myHR.

Concerns about Return to Campus Plans

  • For faculty and staff with concerns about returning to campus due to personal situations or conditions, a new COVID-19 Alternative Work Arrangements Policy establishes guidelines, protocols and standards for providing flexible and alternative work arrangements.
  • Students and families should refer to the Residential Services’ COVID-19 Housing Site for details about Fall 2020 move-in procedures and guidelines.
  • To keep the community informed about developments and answer questions, Northwestern is offering weekly discussion series on specific relevant topics.

Travel, Events and Visitors

Area Permitted Prohibited


  • Domestic travel for essential purposes
  • Travel is not recommended to areas:
    • With high or increasing COVID-19 cases
    • Where a quarantine is required on either end
  • International travel, unless required for COVID-related research, in alignment with State Department and CDC guidance

Meetings and Events

  • Gatherings of 50 or fewer people can occur in-person when:
    • Northwestern students are the primary participants for the event
    • Social-distancing and other health-related guidelines are able to be followed
  • All other gatherings should plan for remote delivery
  • Gatherings:
    • Of over 50 people
    • Where majority of participants are not affiliated with University, or are faculty/staff
    • In spaces insufficient for maintaining social distancing

Visitors to Campus

  • Pre-approved visitors:
    • Whose purpose is among permitted reasons to be on campus
    • Who have completed a health survey
  • Unregistered visitors
  • Visitors without an academic, research, nor administrative purpose

Programming for minors

  • Remote-delivery programming for minors who are not enrolled at Northwestern, including all pre-college populations
  • In-person programming for minors who are not enrolled at Northwestern, including all pre-college populations