*Published on January, 4, 2020*

Dear Students,  

We’re delighted to see you on campus soon for the spring term. As many of you will join the Northeastern community for the first time, we want to share important information and resources that will help you make a safe and healthy transition to the university, including how to get tested as soon as you arrive on campus.  


Remember that you need to get tested at the Cabot Testing Center on campus BEFORE you can enter your residence hall, and the testing center does not take walk-in appointments. Please check Cabot’s hours of operation and plan your arrival accordingly. If you are scheduled to arrive in Boston at a time when the testing center is not open, please make sure you have a safe place to stay until you can get your test and enter your residence hall. 

COVID-19 Protocols  

Northeastern requires students, faculty, staff and contract employees to follow our health and safety protocols to keep our community safe—including wearing a mask or face covering indoors and outdoors, practicing healthy distancing, participating in COVID-19 testing as required, following isolation and quarantine guidelines, and participating in contact tracing if needed. Please visit the Expectations for Return to Campus Attestation Form, read it carefully, and submit the form to show your commitment to practicing these healthy behaviors.  

Helpful Tools  

You’ll use these tools on a regular basis to manage your wellness, your COVID-19 tests, and class schedules:  


On-Campus Testing for COVID-19 – First Test Upon Arrival   

COVID-19 PCR testing is required every three days for Boston-based students. At the start of the spring term, students—both those living off-campus and those in university housing—will be required to have a test on Day One, before entering their residence halls if they are living in university housing. Students will quarantine until they get their first negative test result and be tested again on Day Three and Day Five. They can fully participate in campus activities, including in-person class attendance, after their third negative test.  

These tests and your routine and required testing will be performed at Cabot Testing Center, the asymptomatic testing center, located on campus inside the Cabot gym. Northeastern also has a testing center for symptomatic testing, called Huntington Testing Center, located across the street from Cabot, on Huntington Avenue. 

Please see this guide to first-time testing to learn how to schedule your test and what to expect. Visit the Testing Schedule FAQs for in-depth information on the testing schedule and requirements. 

Positive Tests and Exposure  

If you test positive or if you’ve been exposed to someone with COVID-19, following these steps is crucial to protect the health of all around you:  

Wellness housing on campus is available to students who need to enter into isolation or quarantine. Visit the FAQs on positive tests and contact tracing for more information.  

Students who have already had COVID-19 recently should self-report a positive test to request medical clearance for a three-month testing exemption, if their diagnosis was confirmed through a SARS-CoV-2 viral PCR test. 

Scheduling Your In-Person and Online Classes  

To manage density restrictions in the classroom, traditional, in-person classes will be delivered through a synchronous hybrid-flexible learning model called Hybrid NUflex. This means on any given class period, some portion of the students in each class will join the class remotely and some will attend in-person. On a weekly basis, you’ll use the Dynamic Scheduling tool on the Student Hub to indicate your preference to attend class in-person or remotely. You’ll receive an in-person or remote assignment for each class the Thursday before, which you will also be able to find on the Student Hub. 

Our Commitment to Protect the Pack  

We’re one community at Northeastern University—living, learning, working side by side, and practicing the daily actions that make those interactions possible. Whether it’s wearing a face mask, following the healthy guidance on social gatherings, attending class in-person on your assigned days, or building community in virtual spaces—each action you take makes our pack stronger.  

We encourage you to visit these tools and become familiar with them in the weeks before your classes start. Visit our page for new and returning students for key reminders and important links. If you have any COVID-19 related questions, please get in touch at NUCovid19Qs@northeastern.edu and visit the Northeastern COVID-19 website. You can also join COVID-19 Questions on Communities at Northeastern to ask, browse, and discuss any COVID-19 related questions and get the most up to date information and reminders.  


Madeleine Estabrook 
Senior Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs