UChicago’s COVID-19 Policies: A Year in Review

The University tentatively brought some students back to campus in the fall.

By Elise Yu and Caroline Kubzansky

September 2020

  • Prior to arriving on campus for the 2020–21 academic year, students are required to complete a COVID-19 training program and submit a form attesting to their compliance with the University’s new policies. 
  • Dorm room assignments—including those within apartments—are single-occupancy, and dining halls are capped at a maximum capacity of 75 percent. A meal-delivery program provides students in quarantine with their meals. 
  • Snell-Hitchcock and Stony Island Hall are turned into “isolation housing.”
  • First-years move into housing for a mostly remote O-Week. Arrival testing shows two out of 910 tests positive in the first batch of 1,588 tests. 

October 2020

  • The University activates three testing programs: a symptomatic testing program for those who have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for the virus or are themselves experiencing symptoms, a weekly mandatory surveillance testing program for all asymptomatic members of the campus community who are living in UChicago’s residence halls, and a weekly voluntary surveillance testing program for undergraduates, faculty, postdoctoral researchers, and staff who will frequent the campus but do not live in residence halls. 
  • Lee announces that winter quarter will begin a week later than scheduled for every division but the law school and says University members should expect to retain the “hybrid” model for winter and spring quarters. 

November 2020

  • Students who leave campus for Thanksgiving must remain away from campus until the beginning of winter quarter.
  • The University announces a projected $150 million loss for the coming year.