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Updates on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19)

Northeastern University is closely tracking the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak and university leaders are making contingency plans and decisions in accordance with global public health authorities.

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University Messages

Below are communications sent to the Northeastern community (ordered chronologically beginning with the most recent) with information and resources regarding the outbreak.

April 2, 2020 – Update on Summer II Courses

Previously, the university announced that all in-person courses for Summer I and CPS Spring and Summer Quarters would move to an online format. Based on continued guidance from public health officials, the determination has been made to move Summer II course delivery online.

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March 27, 2020 – Public Health Protocols for a Positive COVID-19 Case

Many of you have expressed questions and concerns about positive diagnoses of COVID-19 within the Northeastern community. Namely, people learn about someone being diagnosed and are wondering, understandably, what it means for them or their colleagues, particularly if they think they may have been in contact with a person who has tested positive.

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March 26, 2020 – Health and Wellness Resources

These are unprecedented times with unprecedented demands that span our professional and personal lives. While the circumstances that factor into managing work, life, learning—and the blurring lines in between—may be unique to each individual, we want to assure everyone in the Northeastern family that there is a support system with resources available to students, faculty, and staff, including the relevant expertise of Northeastern researchers.

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March 24, 2020 – Charlotte Campus Closing

In accordance with the Mecklenburg County Stay-at-Home order announced today, Northeastern’s location in Charlotte will be closed effective Thursday, March 26 through April 16, 2020. Staff will work remotely, and only essential university personnel will be permitted access to these facilities, if and when deemed necessary. Online and remote instruction will continue as planned. Staff are still available by email, phone, and through virtual meetings.

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March 23, 2020Change of Operations for Massachusetts Campuses

In accordance with the latest guidance from the Governor and public health authorities, effective at noon tomorrow, Tuesday, March 24, 2020, Northeastern’s Massachusetts campuses will be restricted to “on-site essential” employees only. Any employee who needs to retrieve critical items from campus should make arrangements to do so prior to 12:00 p.m. tomorrow.

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March 20, 2020 – Announcement on Modified Pass/Fail Policy for Undergraduate Students

I am writing to provide an important notice of change to the university’s Pass/Fail grading policy in light of the move to online and remote learning necessitated by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The following adjustments have been made to the Pass/Fail grading policy for all Spring 2020 undergraduate courses:

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March 20, 2020 – Commencement Message

Over the past few days, many of you have reached out to share your thoughts on how we can join together to celebrate your individual and collective achievements at a time when our traditional spring ceremonies are no longer possible. We want you to know we have heard you. We understand how much this moment matters to you and your families, as the culmination of years of hard work and high achievement.

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March 17, 2020 – Commencement 2020

Among the most invaluable capacities we gain from experience is that of adapting ourselves to the unknowns of a dynamic world, while maintaining the values of our shared humanity.

In this spirit, we will adapt this year’s celebration of commencement to the necessities of this unprecedented moment of global challenge—preserving what we all need today more vitally than ever: a deep sense of community.

While we cannot be together in person this year, we will mark Northeastern’s 118th Commencement in every way open to us, beyond a single day or event.

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March 17, 2020 – Updates on the University’s COVID-19 Response

In an effort to keep the Northeastern community continuously informed, we write to provide you with the latest real-time updates about the university’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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March 15, 2020Community Notification – Presumptive Case of COVID-19

Consistent with our ongoing efforts to provide up-to-date resources and information, we are writing to notify you that a Northeastern student living in off-campus housing in Boston has tested positive for COVID-19. In keeping with CDC protocols, this first test—conducted at a Boston-area hospital—will need to be verified by the CDC, which may take several days.

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March 14, 2020 – Follow up to Student Housing Message

We are writing to clarify some important information and answer questions about our request that students move out of Northeastern residence halls in Boston by Tuesday at 5:00 pm. We are aware that this will require students and their families to act expeditiously; the unprecedented nature of the COVID-19 pandemic requires that we take action to protect public health. In addition, new restrictions on international travel—and possible restrictions on travel within the U.S.—have led to this increased urgency.

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March 14, 2020 – Further Reducing Density on our Campus

Based upon continuing guidance from public health officials, we are requesting that all students who reside in Northeastern residence halls complete their end of semester move-out no later than Tuesday, March 17, 2020, at 5:00 p.m.

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March 13, 2020 – Healthy Habits

We are asking students to refrain from gathering together in groups to access online course delivery, especially in common areas of university research centers and classroom buildings. Classrooms remain available for study by students and faculty individually, or in small groups observing appropriate density and spacing recommendations.

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March 13, 2020 – Charlotte Campus Response to COVID-19

Following guidance and recommendations informed by Mecklenburg County Health Department, and the State of North Carolina, and to ensure educational continuity, Northeastern is making the following operational changes to the Charlotte campuses, effective Monday, March 16, 2020 …

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March 13, 2020 – New College of the Humanities to move to online teaching

In light of the ongoing developments relating to the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the College will move to online and remote teaching and student support starting Monday.

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March 12, 2020 – The Latest COVID-19 Updates

We write to provide new updates and further clarity on the steps we are taking across a range of academic, student support, and campus operational functions to reduce the risk of transmission of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to the university community.

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March 12, 2020 – Policy on Remote Work

Beginning today, in accordance with guidance from public health authorities and with a goal of reducing density on campus, we are making the following temporary change to the remote work policy…

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March 11, 2020 – Advancing our Mission in a Time of Uncertainty

Beginning tomorrow morning, we will move to online and remote instruction on our Boston campus, the university’s largest and most complex operation. We arrived at this decision carefully and thoughtfully, not precipitously. We are seeking to preserve the essence of a Northeastern education—including current co-op placements—while also taking prudent steps to reduce the risk of infection within our community.

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March 10, 2020 – University update on COVID-19

In light of the continuing global impact and community transmission of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19)—and in accordance with public health recommendations—we are writing again to share important updates designed to protect the Northeastern community, while maintaining continuity of education and research

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March 8, 2020 – COVID-19 Planning

This is the latest in a series of regular messages to keep the Northeastern community updated on planning and decision-making related to the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). We would like to reiterate that there is no higher priority than the health and wellbeing of our students, faculty, staff, and others affiliated with Northeastern. 


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March 7, 2020 – Bay Area Campus Response to COVID-19

Notice of change to San Francisco and Silicon Valley campus operations in response to the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.


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March 6, 2020 – President Aoun’s letter to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Northeastern president pushes for federal protections for F-1 visa-holders in light of COVID-19 measures


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March 5, 2020 – Northeastern will move to online teaching for students at its Seattle campus

Based on the guidance of public health officials in light of the COVID-19 outbreak, the university will be offering online teaching exclusively to students of its campus in Seattle beginning Monday, March 9. Classes will be offered online or remotely to Northeastern’s 1,135 Seattle students.


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March 5, 2020 – Update on the University Response to COVID-19

As students and faculty prepare to return from spring break, we are writing to update you on the university’s efforts to monitor and respond to the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.


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March 2, 2020 – University Self-Quarantine Policies

Following the latest developments in the global spread of the coronavirus disease COVID-19 and the related public health guidelines, Northeastern is requesting that students, faculty and staff traveling from the countries identified by the Centers for Disease Control as “Level 3” not return to any of the university’s campuses for 14 days following the day they arrive in the U.S., even if they are symptom-free.


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Feb. 25, 2020 – Spring Break Travel Advisory

Northeastern University is continuing to monitor the current 2019 Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, and university leaders are planning for a broad range of contingencies. We wanted to share with you some important information regarding spring break travel.


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Feb. 12, 2020 – Update

Here are a few important updates, including updated travel restrictions in the U.S., U.K., and Canada; upcoming drop-in info sessions for the Northeastern community held on our Boston campus; and a university travel registry we encourage all travelers to use.


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Feb. 5, 2020 – Update

This communication includes: important facts, the latest public health guidance related to the virus, and useful prevention techniques, appropriate responses for likely scenarios, and important internal and external resources.


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