Skip to content
COVID-19

Campus Policy

Menu

Key Information

  • Wear a face mask or face covering indoors, regardless of vaccination status
  • Get vaccinated and upload proof of immunization if you are located on a U.S. or Canadian campus.
  • Complete the Daily Wellness Check any day you are on campus.
  • Get tested weekly if you are located on a U.S. campus, regardless of vaccination status.
  • Continue to practice good hygiene, wash your hands frequently, and stay home if you feel sick.

Fall Planning

How do COVID-19 variants factor into Northeastern’s fall plans?

Northeastern is closely monitoring the public health guidelines regarding the spread of variants in the U.S. and around the world, particularly places where the university has campus locations and students participating in experiential learning programs. The university has recently announced that:

  • All students joining Northeastern’s U.S. and Canadian campuses are required to be fully vaccinated.
  • All faculty and staff based in the United States and Canada are required to be fully vaccinated.
  • All students, faculty, staff, and vendors on Northeastern’s U.S. and Canadian campuses are required to wear masks indoors.
  • Students, faculty, and staff located on a U.S. campus will be tested weekly.

    We will continue to monitor guidance from local authorities and public health experts. We also have the ability to quickly scale our testing operations and testing frequency on the U.S. campuses where testing is provided if needed.

    Mask Protocol

    What is Northeastern’s updated protocol on mask-wearing?

    Northeastern requires both fully vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals with an approved exemption to wear face masks indoors on our U.S. and Canadian campuses. Masks are not required outdoors, when someone is alone in an office or in their own room in university housing, or when a faculty member or student is presenting to a class and able to maintain six-feet distancing. This requirement may be revised as the fall term progresses.

    What is the guidance on eating and drinking on campus?

    Serving food and drink in designated eating areas or at events and meetings is permitted—for example, food served in break rooms or conference rooms, or at meetings, trainings, receptions, or other events. However, people should continue to follow the mask mandate and only remove their masks indoors when actively eating or drinking. Eating and drinking are not permitted in classrooms while class is in session.

    Are masks required in Northeastern’s COVID-19 testing sites?

    Yes, masks are now required in Northeastern’s COVID-19 testing sites.

    Will there be disciplinary measures for faculty, staff, or students if someone refuses to wear a mask?

    Northeastern will follow the same process we use for other COVID or university protocol compliance. Faculty noncompliance should be referred to the department chair, staff non-compliance should be referred to the HR business partner, and student non-compliance should be referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution.

    Are people permitted to use face shields instead of a face mask or face covering?

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not currently recommend face shields as a substitute for masks. People are welcome to use a face shield in addition to a face covering, but Northeastern still requires a face covering that meets the standards described in its face-covering protocol. Cloth masks are permitted and should fit snugly, but comfortably, against the side of the face, be secured with ties or ear loops, include multiple layers of fabric, and allow for breathing and seeing without restriction or impairment. The face-covering should be large enough to cover your nose and mouth.

    Does the same guidance on masks apply across our global network?

    Yes. Northeastern requires both fully vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals with an approved exemption to wear face masks indoors on our U.S. and Canadian campuses. Faculty, staff, and students in each of our campus locations should continue following other city, state, provincial, or federal guidelines on mask-wearing.

    Daily Wellness Check

    Are Northeastern faculty, staff, and students required to complete a daily health assessment?

    Yes. Everyone—fully vaccinated and unvaccinated with an approved exemption—should resume completing the Daily Wellness Check on a daily basis.

    What happens if I report COVID-19 symptoms when I complete my Daily Wellness Check?

    Students: You will receive instructions at the end of the Daily Wellness Check not to come to campus until cleared by a medical professional to do so. You will be prompted to contact our COVID-19 telehealth provider, Tufts Medical Center, and a clinician will advise you on the next steps. The phone line is available between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday; voicemails can be left at night and on weekends for clinician follow-up.

    Faculty/Staff: You will receive instructions at the end of your wellness check not to come to campus until cleared by a medical professional to do so. You will be directed to your primary care physician for care and the next steps.

    What happens if I indicate exposure to someone with COVID-19 when I complete my Daily Wellness Check?

    You will receive instructions at the end of the Daily Wellness Check not to come to campus until cleared by a medical professional to do so. You will be prompted to contact our COVID-19wellnessteam, and a member of the team will advise you on the next steps.

    Physical Distancing

    What is Northeastern’s updated protocol on physical distancing?

    Campus physical distancing requirements and classrooms have transitioned to full occupancy, on all campus locations where local guidelines permit. Wherever local distancing requirements remain in effect, everyone must continue to observe campus signage on capacity limits and density restrictions. Unvaccinated individuals with an approved exemption should observe six feet of physical distancing from others to the greatest extent possible.

    Does the same guidance on physical distancing apply across our global network?

    Physical distancing requirements are lifted on all of our campuses, wherever local guidelines permit us to do so. Faculty, staff, and students in each of our campus locations should continue following city, state, provincial, or federal guidelines on physical distancing. Unvaccinated individuals with an approved exemption should observe six feet of physical distancing from others to the greatest extent possible.

    Hygiene

    What is Northeastern’s updated hygiene protocol?

    Our community is expected to wash their hands thoroughly and often, especially before eating. Everyone is encouraged to wipe down commonly used surfaces in conference rooms and common areas. Because people will need to remove their masks when they eat or drink, it is important to limit eating and drinking to certain designated areas on campus.

    Cleaning and Sanitizing

    What is Northeastern’s updated cleaning and sanitizing protocol?

    Facilities staff members will disinfect and clean offices and workstations, common areas, and restrooms on a frequent, recurring basis as well as on-demand, in accordance with guidance from the CDC and OSHA, as well as the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.

    How is Northeastern managing air filtration and ventilation?

    In terms of air handling, there are three main types of buildings among our academic, administrative, and residential buildings on the Boston campus. The first type of building is capable of providing exclusively outside air to the air handling system, and these buildings have been set to do just that. The second type has systems that can be set to have the majority of air provided from the outside but do need a certain minimum amount of return air in order to properly operate. These buildings have been tuned to maximize, to the greatest extent possible, outside air supply. The third type of buildings do not use centralized air handling systems and get fresh air from opening windows, much like a residence.

    For buildings with building-wide HVAC systems, all supply air into the buildings, whether 100% fresh air or fresh air mixed with return air from the building, passes through a filtration system with at least a Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) of 13. The filters have an 80% -90% particle size efficiency in capturing particles between 1.0 – 3.0 microns and a 90% or greater efficiency in capturing particles 3.0 – 10.0 microns in size.

    For buildings with partial building HVAC systems, all supply air into the spaces served by the HVAC system, whether 100% fresh air or fresh air mixed with return air from the building, passes through a filtration system that has at least a Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) of 12.

    Northeastern also runs air systems two hours prior to and after occupancy. We use ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) units with HEPA filters for other sites on campus not served by building HVAC systems and other areas we identify as not having adequate ventilation.

    How does Northeastern approach building preparation in leased spaces?

    For leased properties, including the Boston-area hotels that house students and the buildings where our global campuses are located, Northeastern verifies that the property manager has prepared the buildings’ common spaces in accordance with state guidelines and university standards.

    Privacy

    How will Northeastern safeguard my personal data?

    The university has adopted a COVID-19 Privacy Notice that supplements its general Privacy Notice. The Privacy Notice explains the data that Northeastern may collect to reduce the risk of COVID-19, such as health data related to diagnosis or symptoms, test results, body temperature, and information on exposure to COVID-19. The university will treat this information as confidential and will only use it for the purposes of responding to COVID-19 and preventing its spread. Please read the full privacy notice for more information.

    Travel

    What is the travel protocol?

    For more details, please see the Global Safety and Support Office’s COVID-19 protocol.

    Global Network Policies

    Charlotte FAQs

    Roux Institute FAQs

    San Francisco and Silicon Valley FAQs

    Seattle FAQs

    Toronto FAQs

    Vancouver FAQs

    What are the U.S. government’s requirements for travel to the United States?

    The Office of Global Services has detailed guidance on the U.S. government’s travel requirements, including information on vaccination requirements for F and J visa holders, exemptions from the vaccination requirement, and what to consider when traveling.

    Cookies on Northeastern sites

    This website uses cookies and similar technologies to understand your use of our website and give you a better experience. By continuing to use the site or closing this banner without changing your cookie settings, you agree to our use of cookies and other technologies. To find out more about our use of cookies and how to change your settings, please go to our Privacy Statement.