"This week marks the start of the measured, careful, gradual return of students to NYU's campus, which the University is doing in line with a thoughtfully developed and extensive health and safety plan that stresses safety, academics, and flexibility.
"In a normal year, Move-in Day is a single day; this year, in line with our safety protocols and to allow for more physical distancing and reduce physical presence, move-in takes place over four days: two days this week for students coming from NYS-designated hot-spot states and abroad who will begin a mandatory 14-day quarantine, and two days at the end of August/beginning of September for those from the tri-state area.
"The University opened its residence halls two weeks early to accommodate those needing to quarantine and is providing three meals per day (at no additional cost for the additional two weeks of housing or the meals). Altogether, we expect about 2,600 students to begin their quarantine this week in our residence halls. We expect approximately 3,700 more students to move into our residence halls at the end of the quarantine period, and we have set aside space within our housing system for quarantining and isolation during the semester.
"NYU has been consistently communicating about the importance of strict quarantining, in line with NYS requirements; we have professional staff within the residence halls to support the students during their quarantine. As part of our efforts to prevent and respond to the coronavirus, the University has required testing upon arrival, and set up a location on campus to facilitate that. The quarantining students will also be tested again 7 - 10 days after their first test.
"We have also developed extensive programming to help ease the challenges and isolation of the two-week quarantine period, as these students will not be allowed out of their rooms for any purposes except medical visits (including tests) and retrieving the meals delivered to their hallways three times per day. In addition, we will have counseling services available to students 24/7, and extensive mindfulness, wellness, and spirituality programming available to support them, as well as special academic programming.
"In May, NYU indicated its plans to bring students back to campus for the fall. In the context of plans that will help ensure safety, the University is committed to fulfilling its educational mission. The fall curriculum will be a mix of in-person classes, online classes, and classes that are a blend.
"The University has a multi-layered health and safety plan that requires that before anyone step on campus they be tested, submit negative results, and complete a daily screener each day before coming to campus; that requires participation in ongoing testing, which will test thousands of NYU community members per week; that includes contact tracing; that requires mask wearing at all times in and around NYU facilities; that involves the installation of over 2,000 hand sanitizer stations and 100,000 individual hand sanitizer bottles for distribution to students, faculty and staff; that involves the procurement of more than half a million masks, 65,000 thermometers, and over 400,000 gloves; that has involved the installation of 90,000 pieces of signage about health, safety, occupancy limits, and way-finding; and that has involved the installation of approximately 1,000 barriers in NYU facilities.
"A lot of emphasis has been placed on density reduction, too. Occupancy in the residence halls has been reduced by approximately 45%. Classrooms will typically have 50% or less occupancy than normal. Large classes will be online. And NYU will continue to have many personnel telework, as they did over the summer, full-time or part-time, ensuring we have enough staff to properly support students and faculty and our academic mission, but no more than is necessary.
"NYU is keenly conscious of the importance of contributing to New York's hard-won efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19. The University has made clear that it will not hesitate to take action against any student or other member of the University who seeks to put at risk the health and safety of the community.
"Recognizing that COVID-related travel restrictions would make it hard for many of NYU's international students to make their way to campus and hard for students hoping to study abroad to get to their destinations, we developed an innovative solution: 'Go Local,' which enables international students who can make their way to one of the sites in NYU's extensive network of campuses and academic sites to study there for the fall; approximately 3,000 students availed themselves of 'Go Local.' "