Cover your face
Always wear a mask on campus
November 2, 2020
You have adapted brilliantly to the challenges of the remote fall semester, both academically and through the ingenuity you have shown in making connections with each other outside the virtual classroom. Yet we know that you long—as do we—to be back together in Baltimore. Based on the preparations we have made to operate during the COVID pandemic and on our experience this fall as well as that of our peers, and supported by a widening of our testing program and requirements, we are optimistic that we can return safely, provided we all continue to work together.
We are watching the concerning developments in the COVID pandemic in some parts of the country and the world, and as President Daniels, Provost Kumar, and Senior Vice President Miller noted in their message earlier today, we will have to make a final determination in January, if not sooner, about whether we can move forward with our plans based on the health conditions at that time. But we are hopeful because of the care many of you have taken to limit the spread of COVID in our community. Throughout this semester, we have had a small group of students living in the residence halls and approximately 2,000 undergraduates living off campus in Baltimore, and we are proud of their diligent efforts to keep our community safe. We have seen fewer than 40 known cases of COVID among JHU students (undergraduates and graduates) since the beginning of the semester. Those of you in Baltimore have clearly taken seriously the JHNeedsU guidance and practiced COVID safety measures, such as face covering, physical distancing, limits on gatherings, hand washing, and symptom monitoring.
As we welcome more students back to Baltimore, your efforts will become all the more crucial. That is why we will work with all members of the community—students, faculty, and staff—to create a universitywide social compact modeled on the one our Student Advisory Committee drafted last summer. Our ability to stay together in-person throughout the spring semester depends on us all to do our part.
That includes participation in Johns Hopkins’ expanded COVID testing program. Undergraduate students who are in Baltimore, whether they are living on campus or off, will be required to take twice-weekly COVID tests. Free testing will also be available for all faculty, staff, and graduate students, and required weekly for many. Rigorous adherence to this testing schedule and cooperation with contact tracing are crucial to our ability to make sure the spread of COVID in our community is as limited as possible.
The campus experience during spring semester will be modified in a variety of ways in response to the pandemic, and some of the details remain to be determined.
We will issue a comprehensive Return to Campus guide in early December, but here is what we can share now:
Academic Schedule – Key Dates
Housing application process: Nov. 3, 10 a.m. to Nov. 10, 10 a.m. EST
Spring semester bills:
Financial aid: Credited to students’ accounts Jan. 19
Intersession: Jan. 4-15. (Shortened by one week to allow for an extended move-in period.)
First day of classes: Jan. 25.
Spring Break: To reduce the COVID risks posed by travel, Spring Break will be replaced by individual days off distributed throughout the semester:
Reading period: May 3-4
Exam period: May 5-13
University Commencement: May 27
Please note, plans for Commencement will be shared by that office in the coming weeks.
Other Health Safety Measures
Housing and Dining
Activities, Athletics, and Campus Facilities
Research and Work Opportunities
Tuition and Financial Aid
The latest information about these and other elements of our spring plans is available at our Coronavirus Information website.
Your safety and that of all members of our campus community and of our Baltimore neighbors remain our topmost consideration as we prepare for the spring semester. We recognize that the pandemic’s course may evolve. As it does, we will continue to consult with Johns Hopkins’ experts in public health and medicine to ensure that our plans meet the challenges posed by COVID and to monitor a variety of public health metrics and modeling of the pandemic’s trajectory over the course of the next few months. In January, if not sooner, we will make a final determination about whether we can safely carry out our plans. We have the utmost belief in your dedication to do what’s necessary to allow us to do so, but if conditions worsen so much locally or nationally that we cannot, we will change course.
These last several months have been an incredibly stressful time for all of us, but your commitment to your pursuit of knowledge and to each other is a constant reminder of what is so special about the Johns Hopkins community. Stay safe, be well, and we hope to see you in the spring.
Vice Provost for Student Affairs
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
Help us protect each other
Always wear a mask on campus
Wash or sanitize hands often and don't touch your face
Keep six feet between you and others
Self-isolate and call 833-546-7546 right away