Seton Hall University said Friday that the institution plans to reopen its doors to in-person instruction for the fall 2020 semester using a “hybrid flexible” instruction plan that will offer students the option to attend classes either in-person or remotely.
The plan makes Seton Hall one of the first colleges in New Jersey to announce a definitive reopening plan.
According to a message on the university’s website, the fall semester will begin on Aug. 24 and will continue without a fall break until Nov. 24 – prior to Thanksgiving break – to allow students to return home for the end of the semester. After Nov. 30, final review sessions, reading day and final exams are scheduled to be administered remotely.
“This schedule reduces cyclical risks of virus spread during colder months,” said university spokesperson Laurie Pine, on the website. “It also avoids the possibility of students, faculty and staff members traveling home for fall break and Thanksgiving, contracting the virus, and returning to campus with nascent cases of COVID-19.”
“Work is underway to modify campus environments, including academic buildings, dining spaces and residence halls, to support physical distancing and uphold health protocols,” Pine said. “Residence hall rooms will reopen with reduced density and specialized cleaning procedures.”
Currently, it is unclear how many students will be allowed to live in the residence halls on campus or how many students will be able to engage in in-person lectures.
According to the university, additional classroom technology will be installed over the summer to accommodate the hybrid flexible teaching model and will be supplemented by training for faculty, also set to take place over the summer.