Frequently Asked Questions

To search for specific information in the FAQ, as well as on the full Planning for Fall 2020 website, use the search box located at the bottom of the left-hand side menu.

FAQs were last updated August 21 at 4:30 p.m.

Decision Rationale

  • How was the decision to open the campus for fall 2020 made?
    In May 2020, President Burstein established a team of faculty, staff, and students to research and recommend how to approach our learning, living, and working environment for the academic year 2020-21 and beyond: the Lawrence Pandemic Planning Team (LPPT). The LPPT explored three possible living and learning modes:    Full Mode (high on-campus student residency, courses taught in-person …
  • Why not just go remote entirely?
    In our educational philosophy, we speak of the transformative experience a Lawrence education provides through a student’s immersion in a learning community that, at its foundation, is a vibrant, safe, and healthy residential campus. While we would continue to provide a high-quality academic program no matter the mode, we also value the campus community aspect of a Lawrence education and its importance in our student’s educational experience. Using health guidelines as …
  • How firm are your plans? Might they change before fall?
    We will continue to adjust our protocols to follow guidance from local and state health departments, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to ensure community health and safety. When a policy change is needed, the LPPT will discuss options with proper shared governance committee. 
  • What happens if the campus must go fully remote again?
    We have developed risk assessment mechanisms that provide us information on the health and safety of our campus to advise on our learning mode. With thresholds and implementation strategies in place—green light (open), yellow light (enhanced precautions), and red light (all remote)—we are prepared to shift if conditions warrant. You can read more about our contingency planning on the Protecting the Health & Safety of our community page.
  • I see that other schools are deciding to close or be online-only for the fall. Some have even changed plans from earlier in the summer. Why is Lawrence opening for the fall?
    The parameters for colleges and universities across the country differ significantly. Lawrence is fortunate to have access to testing, several hospital and health clinics in the immediate area, relatively low virus spread in the Fox Cities, on campus housing to accommodate a significant portion of its student body, and the financial resources to support a robust campus health framework. Institutions without these resources have had to limit on campus learning.  

Health & Safety

  • Do I have to wear a mask? What kind?
    All members of the community will be required to wear masks in classrooms and other indoor public spaces, as well as outdoor spaces where physical distancing is not possible. Students can contact Wellness Services if they need assistance acquiring a mask. Faculty and staff can request a mask by filling out this form.  Wearing a face mask will reduce the spread of respiratory …
  • In addition to wearing a mask, what other safety precautions will I be required to follow?
    All members of the community will also need to adhere to the university’s physical distancing guidelines and practice other safety measures, which include: Avoiding public transportation whenever possible.  Limiting non-essential travel.  Limiting social gatherings and avoiding crowded venues.  Practicing good hygiene, including handwashing; disinfecting surfaces you touch; and avoiding touching your face.   Ensuring that the health and safety of our campus community is protected this …
  • What happens if someone doesn’t follow the Lawrence Campus Community Pledge or other safety precautions?
    Lawrence will balance our commitment to education with the reality that the consequences of one person’s decision could significantly impact our community’s health.   Students who are unable or unwilling to abide by the measures that have been established should reconsider any decision to reside on campus and choose a remote learning option instead. The process for assessing infractions and responding with specific consequences quickly is being developed …
  • Has Lawrence purchased sufficient Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?
    Lawrence has acquired sufficient PPE for fall term 2020. Additionally, multiple vendors have been identified if additional equipment is necessary throughout the term.
  • How has Lawrence enhanced cleaning and disinfecting regimens?
    Campus Services has instituted new cleaning protocols to decrease person-to-person contact. Custodial staff are focused on cleaning common spaces and disinfecting all touch points frequently. Individual offices and departments have received supplies of cleaning products, along with cleaning instructions. These new protocols include increased cleaning of exterior seating, entryways to buildings, benches, and all hard surface areas that are frequently touched.  We have …
  • How has Lawrence improved air exchange in campus buildings?
    All campus buildings with a central ventilation system are being outfitted with new filters that exponentially increase air filtration to disrupt the passage of the virus through the ventilation system. All ventilation systems across campus, where feasible, will be recalibrated to increase outside air flow.   The university is currently investigating an advanced air purification process, bipolar ionization, to provide even better air quality in ventilated buildings. A test will take …
  • How has Lawrence adapted facilities and classrooms to facilitate physical distancing?
    Our Instructional Technology Services team created a guide to instructional spaces across campus (including rooms in academic, administrative, and other buildings) that incorporates CDC-recommended physical distancing guidance. This guide was first made available in June, allowing faculty and staff to make informed choices regarding fall course modality. It is being regularly updated, as we continue to assess instructional spaces across campus and explore how we might create new classrooms in spaces not typically …
  • What steps will Lawrence take if someone tests positive for COVID-19?
    Anyone who receives a positive COVID-19 test result through on-campus testing will be notified as soon as possible. Faculty and staff will be asked to isolate at home. Students will be immediately moved to a separate isolation area. In coordination with Appleton Health Department, individuals will be given instructions for isolation, education to protect themselves and others …
  • What collaborations exist between Lawrence and local community to provide information sharing should a local or college outbreak occur?
    Over the course of the pandemic, the university has established an excellent working relationship with the Appleton Health Department (AHD) and the City of Appleton. We will continue to collaborate to track and monitor COVID-19 cases on campus and within the community. Wellness Services and Human Resources will coordinate with the AHD for contact tracing and identifying …
  • Why is 14 days of quarantine necessary? Can I take a test and be released from quarantine if I receive a negative result?
    Lawrence University’s quarantine policy is to complete full 14 days of self-monitoring. This policy reflects recommendations from Appleton Health Department, CDC guidelines, and other medical experts. Based on existing literature, the incubation period–the time from exposure to development infection–of SARS-CoV-2 ranges from 2–14 days. Thus,If you were to take a test during your 14 day …
  • Do students need to practice any safety precautions before arriving on campus?
    We ask all students who will live on the Lawrence campus—or in Appleton—this fall to be vigilant about your safety and avoid exposure for 14 days prior to moving. This will help ensure the health and safety of our entire community. Below are steps to take before and during your move to campus:  Stay home whenever possible  …
  • Do I need to wait for my test results before I can participate in campus activities, including in-person classes?
    Students will only be able to attend in-person classes or co-curricular activities, work on-campus jobs, or gather in common spaces after they receive their negative COVID-19 test result. (We expect results to arrive from Bellin within 3-5 days of a COVID-19 test.) Students should reach out to their individual faculty members, supervisor, or others to make the appropriate arrangements if they believe the waiting period will prevent them from participating.  Students who receive a …
  • How will you handle care for ill students in the isolation/quarantine spaces in Kohler Hall?
    In coordination with Appleton Health Department, individuals will be given instructions for isolation, education to protect themselves and others around them, information for what to do if symptomatic, and daily follow-ups. Meals and supplies will be delivered to students daily. All efforts will be made to ensure students stay connected with classes as they are …
  • If I fall ill while on campus, do I have to stay, or can I make arrangement to get home that don’t involve public transportation? Can my family come get me?
    The Center for Disease Control and Prevention strongly recommends that anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 should not travel.   
  • Will there be a campus shuttle or other transportation options available for transportation from the airport or to get needed supplies when we arrive?
    The Student Welfare Committee of LUCC (the student government) is arranging for pick-ups from the Appleton Airport and Bus Station on arrival days from the 8th-12th. We ask you to use this service in lieu of ride share apps or public transportation if you are arriving on September 8th, 10th, or 12th. The shuttle will …
  • I am an employee who is planning to work remotely. Do I have to get tested?
    This depends. Employees who plan to work exclusively from home are not required to participate in testing at the beginning of the term. However anyone who might visit campus, even infrequently or for short duration, should be tested.   
  • If I am an employee or student in the area and working/studying remotely, will I still have access to campus testing? Or will I need to make my own arrangements?
    If you do not plan to be part of the campus community in any capacity, we would prefer you rely on testing options that are available locally.   
  • I am a member of staff and have concerns about the ventilation in my working space. Who do I contact about updated ventilation?
    Colleagues from Facilities have reviewed most of the buildings on campus and have already taken measures to increase air flow and filtration wherever possible.  Options for ventilation will depend on where your workspace is located. To meet with a member of Facility Services to review options for ventilation, plexiglass, or other workspace alterations, contact Jon Meyer and Joe King.   If appropriate, review …
  • Can I wear a face shield in place of a mask?
    Currently, Lawrence is not permitting face shields in place of masks. If a shield in place of a mask is sought as a reasonable accommodation under the ADA, students should contact accessibility services by emailing accessibility@lawrence.edu, and employees should contact human resources at humanresources@lawrence.edu. 
  • Why do I need to get a test in August/September if I plan to come to campus later in the fall?
    If you plan come to campus at any time this fall, you must  have a [negative] COVID-19 test (testing is scheduled for August 31, September 2, and September 3) and affirm the Lawrence Campus Community Pledge. All  individuals who will be on campus in the fall, no matter when they plan to be on campus, must participate in the first round of testing so that they will  be included in the weekly randomized testing taking …
  • What will faculty/staff testing look like for the fall? Is it free?
    Those faculty and staff who were on campus during the summer months of July and August and those joining the community for the academic year will be tested August 31, September 2, and September 3. Our pandemic healthcare partner, Bellin Health, will conduct this first round of testing in the atrium of Steitz Hall, observing important safety protocols. We will institute a one-way flow of traffic through …
  • If I am living or working on campus, will I need to have a COVID-19 test?
    All students, faculty, and staff living or working on campus will be tested for COVID-19 this fall and will participate in frequent testing and monitoring throughout the term. Our community health partner, Bellin Health, will administer the tests.   Dates for testing are as follows:  August 31, September 2-3: New international Lawrentians, Summer Residents, Faculty & Staff September 8: New Lawrentians  September 10 & 12: …

Learning

  • Have changes been made to the academic calendar and course schedule?
    The 2020-21 academic year will begin and end, as originally planned, with classes starting on September 14, and final exams ending before November 25 and the Thanksgiving holiday. Midterm Reading Period has been adjusted. Midterm reading days are now single days without instruction to provide breaks in the calendar for faculty, staff, and students. These days will be Tuesday, October 6 and Wednesday, October 21. December Term 2020 …
  • How will studio classes in the Conservatory work?
    Private lessons will be delivered primarily through remote instruction. 
  • How will music ensembles work?
    Ensembles will break into smaller chamber groups to comply with room capacity and physical distancing guidelines.  
  • Will there be community outreach opportunities for Conservatory students?
    Yes, the Conservatory is expanding its capacity to deliver interactive virtual outreach opportunities locally, nationally, and globally. 
  • How will you maximize safety in practice rooms?
    We continue to refine and improve our plan to maximize safety while practicing. Currently, we are increasing HVAC airflow and filtering. We are opening options for students to practice in residence hall rooms to reduce practice room congestion. Cleaning protocols require each student to sanitize piano keyboards, stands, and doorknobs with sanitizing wipes (provided). We are working on ways to allow 15 minutes between …
  • Will there be concerts?
    There will be no concerts or recitals with live audiences. But there will still be live performances that are broadcast via webcast. These include performances that are created specifically for video, interactive performances for a live virtual audience or other options that may emerge.
  • What will recitals look like?
    There will be broad creative leeway in the creation and presentation of recitals. Live webcast recitals are a possibility, as are remote recitals, video projects, or other approaches approved by the studio professor. We see the challenges of the times we are living in as an opportunity to expand creativity.  
  • Will there be a mid-term reading period this year?
    Instead of one mid-term reading period, the two midterm reading days are redistributed within the term as single days without instruction to provide breaks in the calendar for faculty, staff, and students. These days will be Tuesday, October 6 and Wednesday, October 21. 
  • Will Conservatory tutoring, or “couch tutoring,” be available in the fall?
    Like spring term, Conservatory tutoring sessions will be available to all students—on- or off-campus—in the fall.   
  • What specific cleaning protocols will be in place in the Conservatory?
    In addition to the cleaning protocols outlined in the Protecting the Health and Safety of Our Community section (link) of the fall plan, additional cleaning protocols will be utilized in Conservatory studio spaces and practice rooms. These practices are informed by a recent study from the University of Colorado.   Disinfecting wipes will be available in classrooms and practice rooms so that students can wipe …
  • How will you handle safety in practice rooms?
    We are looking into a variety of ways to better distribute practice times and locations for students. For example, we may create time for students to practice during the day in their residence hall rooms or schedule specific practice times for students. We are also working to maximize outdoor spaces for performance and plays. This is a …
  • If I’m a vocalist, do I need to wear a mask during practice or studios?
    Just as masks are being adapted for specific instruments, masks are also being adapted for vocalists. Conservatory professors and choral directors are currently exploring the best mask options for their students and will share their findings with students as soon as they are available.  
  • What about music education classes and practicums?
    We are still waiting to hear what local area school district plans are. Education classes will likely be a hybrid, and we are looking at creative ways for opportunities to continue teacher training remotely as we did in the spring where Lawrence education students worked with music students across the globe. 
  • Will auditions for placement in ensembles and groups still take place?
    There will be auditions, and faculty are still working on timing and mode. Individual faculty members and ensemble directors will be providing more information about their processes in the coming days.  
  • How will faculty be handling office hours?
    Office hours will still be offered. You should reach out to your individual faculty members to find out their plans for handling office hours.  
  • Where will on-campus students take their lessons if the lesson is being offered online?
    While this will be determined by individual faculty members, many are planning to open their faculty offices for students to use as their private online lesson space. We’re looking at ways to maximize that experience, e.g. looking at better quality microphones, wired computer connections, and larger monitors in those spaces.  
  • Will there still be access to the lockers for students on campus?
    Yes, lockers will still be available. We may handle combination distribution differently to avoid large groups of people gathering in the Conservatory office to collect a key at the start of the term.  
  • What if I have concerns about access to an instrument due to being in quarantine or other circumstances?
    We are working through those questions. Studio faculty for those instruments are the best place to start with those kinds of questions and concerns. 
  • What if I’m not a music major? Can I still participate in Conservatory classes and ensembles?
    Yes. The same opportunities are available to non-music majors this year as they were last year. You can audition for ensembles, take individual lessons, and take Conservatory classes.  
  • What if I have specific questions about my classes or major that aren’t answered in the FAQ?
    Students are welcome—and encouraged—to reach out directly to studio teachers or their professors with questions. The Conservatory faculty and staff are committed to doing whatever we can to empower our students to keep making music. 
  • How will students know if a class will be offered remotely or in person?
    The Registrar is developing a system within the University Catalog that will display information regarding course delivery mode. Mode options will include In-Person, Remote Synchronous, Hybrid (a combination of In-Person and Remote Synchronous), and Asynchronous (that is, online, no meetings). Students will be able to participate in an In-Person or Hybrid course remotely as needed and following guidance that will be …
  • Do I have to re-register for fall courses?
    Returning students will be given the opportunity to adjust their course schedules in late August, once the necessary updates have been entered into the University Catalog. Students are encouraged to speak with their advisors about any concerns or questions they may have as they finalize their plans for fall.   Timeline: August 13: Class schedule posted on the university Registrar’s page, indicating which …
  • How do I let the university know about my plans for the fall?
    On August 13, you will receive an email asking you to confirm your living and learning plans for the Fall Term. We ask for your response by August 17.  If you indicate you are living and learning off campus (either here in the Fox Valley or in distance mode), this form will help us make the proper revisions to your billing statement and financial aid. You …
  • Will Björklunden be available for faculty and staff use?
    No, Bjorklunden will remain closed for academic and student group programming through Fall Term.
  • Do I need to wait for my test results before I can participate in campus activities, including in-person classes?
    Students will only be able to attend in-person classes or co-curricular activities, work on-campus jobs, or gather in common spaces after they receive their negative COVID-19 test result. (We expect results to arrive from Bellin within 3-5 days of a COVID-19 test.) Students should reach out to their individual faculty members, supervisor, or others to make the appropriate arrangements if they believe the waiting period will prevent them from participating.  Students who receive a …
  • How can I determine how classes will be taught this fall?
    You can access the updated class schedule here. Once you are in the Class Schedule Search in Voyager, you can search course offerings by modality (i.e.,how it will be taught in the fall), using the Class Qualities search box to select your preferred modality. The options are: In Person Delivery, Hybrid Delivery (a combination of in person and remote instruction), …

Living

International Students

Study Abroad & Off-Campus Programs 

  • Will students be able to study abroad this fall?
    Many off-campus study providers have canceled programs for the fall. The ACM programs at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Newberry Library have been postponed to Spring 2021. The few programs that remain open have plans in place for online instruction should the in-country experience need to start late or end early. 
  • Whom should students contact for more information regarding study abroad?
    Students and families can contact the Off-Campus Programs (OCP) office. OCP staff is available to meet via Zoom or phone to discuss future study abroad opportunities, our domestic off-campus programs, the application process, and more.
  • Will the London Centre be open?
    After consulting with the Director of the London Center and reviewing guidance and information from the United Kingdom, the university has decided to close the  residential aspect of our London Centre programming for the fall term. This was not an easy decision, but we believe it is the safest approach for us at this point, when so much about …

Academic Support  

Athletics 

  • Since teams will not compete, what will student-athletes be permitted to do?
    We are still determining what participation in athletics will look like for our student-athletes and our coaching staff is focusing their energy on finding opportunities for each of our teams to return to their passion of sport in a safe way. Any plans will include the recommendations of a phased-in process as outlined by the NCAA resocialization …
  • Will winter and spring sports continue?
    From the Midwest Conference: The MWC statement specifically applies to any league competition prior to December 31. The MWC COVID-19 Working Group will continue to meet and discuss what it might look like to sponsor sports during the spring term and make recommendations to the Presidents’ Council in the coming months. The MWC will continue …
  • Will athletics facilities be open for use?
    There is no set date yet. We are working out and evaluating a number of details, including the safe reopening of athletic facilities. 
  • Will any additional sanitation practices or requirements be implemented by athletics?
    The NCAA and Midwest Conference have guidance for safe athletics environments that include additional sanitation practices. 
  • Will there be athletics competition at Lawrence this fall?
    The Midwest Conference Presidents’ Council and the Midwest Conference COVID-19 working group announced on Monday, July 27, the suspension of Midwest Conference play through the 2020 calendar year (December 31, 2020), in order to ensure the health and safety of all conference athletes, coaches, and athletics staff. More information is available on the Vikings athletics website.  The Northern …
  • What does this mean for fencing?
    At present, there has been no decision made on the MFC (Midwest Fencing Conference) athletics competition for the 2020-2021 academic year.
  • Which teams will be impacted by the decision to not compete in the fall semester?
    Sports impacted by the MWC and NCHA decisions include football, men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s soccer, volleyball, women’s tennis, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s swimming, men’s and women’s indoor track, and men’s and women’s hockey.  

Financial Aid, Billing, & Insurance

Faculty & Staff 

  • How will we determine if faculty teach remotely or in-person?
    This choice will be made by faculty members in consultation with their departments. There are many factors that will influence this decision, including pedagogical considerations for each course, classroom capacity, health risk factors for faculty members and people in their households, mental health, and childcare or elder care responsibilities. Faculty should review the considerations outlined in the COVID-19 Staff …
  • How will we determine whether staff work on campus or remotely?
    As we prepare for more students to arrive on campus this fall, many departments may determine that additional staff colleagues will be “essential employees,” whose duties require them to work on campus some or all the time. Supervisors and departments will re-evaluate how best to balance traditional in-person work, telecommuting, and adjustments to work schedule or location. Please note …
  • What health protocols do employees need to follow if they work on campus?
    All employees are expected to complete the daily COVID-19 Self Observation Questionnaire prior to coming to campus for the day. Employees should not report to campus if the questionnaire directs them to remain at home, they are otherwise feeling sick or unwell, or have been directed to quarantine or isolate by a physician or health department. Employees …
  • How will we monitor if these protocols are being followed?
    All members of the Lawrence community are expected to follow the Lawrence Campus Community Pledge and monitor themselves daily for COVID-19 symptoms. Members of the Lawrence Pandemic Planning Team will work closely with Appleton Public Health Department and monitor levels of infection on campus and in the community. Additionally, by monitoring current isolation and quarantine bed availability, the university will assess the overall risk to our community …
  • Can employees travel on behalf of the University?
    Travel on behalf of the university via public transportation (e.g. airplane, bus, train, or other shared conveyance) is prohibited until the end of 2020. Depending on conditions, this prohibition may be extended into 2021.   Use of university or other vans for academic, co-curricular, or professional travel should be conducted in a way that complies with physical distancing guidelines within the vehicle. …
  • I am an employee who is planning to work remotely. Do I have to get tested?
    This depends. Employees who plan to work exclusively from home are not required to participate in testing at the beginning of the term. However anyone who might visit campus, even infrequently or for short duration, should be tested.   
  • If I am an employee or student in the area and working/studying remotely, will I still have access to campus testing? Or will I need to make my own arrangements?
    If you do not plan to be part of the campus community in any capacity, we would prefer you rely on testing options that are available locally.   
  • I am a member of staff and have concerns about the ventilation in my working space. Who do I contact about updated ventilation?
    Colleagues from Facilities have reviewed most of the buildings on campus and have already taken measures to increase air flow and filtration wherever possible.  Options for ventilation will depend on where your workspace is located. To meet with a member of Facility Services to review options for ventilation, plexiglass, or other workspace alterations, contact Jon Meyer and Joe King.   If appropriate, review …
  • What will faculty/staff testing look like for the fall? Is it free?
    Those faculty and staff who were on campus during the summer months of July and August and those joining the community for the academic year will be tested August 31, September 2, and September 3. Our pandemic healthcare partner, Bellin Health, will conduct this first round of testing in the atrium of Steitz Hall, observing important safety protocols. We will institute a one-way flow of traffic through …

Campus Visitors & Events 

  • Will campus buildings be open this fall?
    Access to all university campuses is restricted to students, faculty, staff, and contracted vendors. Key card access will be required for campus building access outside of standard operating hours (8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.).
  • What rules and guidelines apply to the Lawrence Community Music School?
    The Lawrence Community Music School (CMS) has its own COVID-19 statements (announcements, red banner) on the home page of its website. The CMS will partially reopen on Monday, August 3. The lobby will remain closed, and the office will be staffed Monday-Thursday for limited hours. Most office functioning will remain remote.   Piano and strings teachers may choose to teach private lessons in the building; all other instruction will …
  • Will Björklunden be open to the public this fall?
    Bjorklunden Seminars will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, in compliance with guidance from state, local and campus leadership. Overnight accommodations will not be available. For information about specific seminars, please contact Mark Breseman at 920-839-2216 or mark.d.breseman@lawrence.edu.
  • Can we bring visitors to campus?
    To uphold the mission of the university and ensure the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff, Lawrence is currently limiting access to guests. Wherever possible, virtual gatherings should be prioritized. Where this is not possible, guests – anyone who is not currently enrolled, employed by, or contractually affiliated with Lawrence University or the Lawrence …
  • Can we host any events or meetings on campus?
    Virtual gatherings should be prioritized whenever possible. All gatherings (both indoor and outdoor) must comply with health and safety guidelines established (see above) by the University.  Non-instructional, indoor social gatherings and meetings are to be limited to 10 individuals while following university physical distancing guidelines.  All parties will also be asked to help clean the room at the conclusion of their gathering. …

Have more questions?

Find information about future Q&A webcasts and recordings of past session here.

Additional Questions Email: coronainfo@lawrence.edu 

I have a question about my personal situation regarding health/financial aid/academics, etc. Who should I contact? 

Academics for students: For specific concerns or issues, contact the faculty member teaching the class directly or your advisor. 

Academics policy questions for faculty and students: dean_faculty@lawrence.edu 

Housing: residential.education@lawrence.edu 

Campus Life: deanofstudents@lawrence.edu 

Financial Aid: financial.aid@lawrence.edu 

Student Accounts (billing and refunds): student_accounts@lawrence.edu 

Athletics: kimberly.n.tatro@lawrence.edu  

Conservatory: roseanna.m.cannizzo@lawrence.edu 

International student services: leah.d.mcsorley@lawrence.edu 

Travel restrictions: deanofstudents@lawrence.edu   

Faculty & Staff: humanresources@lawrence.edu 

Wellness Services: wellnessservices@lawrence.edu 

Center for Academic Success: cas@lawrence.edu     

Admissions: admissions@lawrence.edu       

Technology: helpdesk@lawrence.edu 

Off Campus Programs: OffCampusPrograms@Lawrence.edu 

Giving: jennifer.foth@lawrence.edu   

On campus events: events@lawrence.edu