The University of Notre Dame on Monday announced students will be allowed to return to campus the week of Aug. 10 for the fall semester.
The date is two weeks earlier than originally scheduled. The semester calendar has also been altered to forgo the typical October break and end the semester before Thanksgiving, Notre Dame's president announced in letters to the campus community.
The Rev. John Jenkins extended the campus shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic through the rest of the summer. Students were sent home mid-March to complete the spring semester via remote learning.
“Bringing our students back is in effect assembling a small city of people from many parts of the nation and the world, who may bring with them pathogens to which they have been exposed,” he said. “We recognize the challenge, but we believe it is one we can meet.”
Notre Dame officials have consulted for months with experts on the faculty, members of the infectious disease departments at several leading institutions and a team of medical specialists from Cleveland Clinic to develop a plan to ensure the health and safety of students, faculty and staff.
The plan will include comprehensive testing for COVID-19, contact tracing, quarantine and isolation protocols, social distancing and mask requirements, and enhanced cleaning of all campus spaces.
Grace College in Winona Lake also announced Monday its intention to reopen campus to students in the fall.
Work is underway to develop specific plans for safe and effective reopening in each area of campus. Grace will communicate details to students and parents when available.
Go to www.grace.edu/COVID-19 to read a message from college President Bill Katip about the decision.