COVID-19 Updates and Guidance > Updates > Winter planning update for students

Student update to DePaul's winter Planning

October 5, 2020 

Key takeaways:
  • DePaul’s winter term will look similar to fall with the majority of courses and student services being offered online.
  • Residence hall occupancy will be slightly expanded from its current level. Students will continue to live in single-occupancy rooms.
  • Please continue to pay close attention to Chicago’s travel order and make sure you are following DePaul’s safety protocols if you visit campus.

Dear students,

This fall, DePaul reduced its on-campus footprint to promote the health and safety of our faculty, staff and students—as well as the communities in which we live. We are grateful that we have had very few COVID-19 cases on campus so far and that we are providing you uninterrupted educational experiences. Thank you for doing your part to keep yourself and those around you safe.

As you know, COVID-19 remains a serious threat in the Chicago area. Public health experts expect winter—with flu season and fewer opportunities to socialize outdoors—to pose a challenge. In light of this, we are planning for the winter term at DePaul to look very similar to fall.

Currently, about 2 percent of courses are on campus. For winter, we are planning for approximately 4.2 percent of courses to be on-campus courses, though our plans could change depending on state, local and public health recommendations. Modalities for winter courses are listed in Campus Connect. Descriptions of the modalities can be found on the 
Student Success website.

As long as local and state guidelines allow, on-campus amenities such as The Ray, some computer labs and the library will continue to be available to students who wish to use them. The vast array of online services, including the Career Center, academic advising, counseling, wellness and mental health support, also will continue to be available. You’ll also have the opportunity to participate in virtual community-building events, much like the 165 virtual events that were held during Welcome Week to engage our new students in Esports tournaments, yoga, juggling, and getting to know DePaul and Chicago.

As DePaul did in the fall, the student activity fee and Athletics fee will be canceled for winter, and the student U-Pass will be optional for eligible students.

We are currently reviewing residence hall occupancy levels and considering a modest expansion of the number of students living on campus during the winter term. As in the fall term, residential students will be provided with single-occupancy rooms and dedicated washrooms. Students who already live in residence halls will be automatically approved for winter. Next steps for applying for winter residency will be shared with students soon.

We encourage everyone to continue following the tenets of the Health and Safety Pledge. The safety of everyone and the safety of the communities in which we learn and live depend on it. Wearing a face covering or mask, physical distancing and practicing good personal hygiene and personal care are proven ways to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Remember you must use the #CampusClear app any time you prepare to visit campus and complete DePaul’s required Health and Safety Guidelines for Returning to Campus training.

Though the start of winter term is three months away, keep in mind that you will need to follow Chicago’s emergency travel order after winter break if you plan to reside in Chicago, even if you will not be living in a residence hall. If you will come to Chicago from a state affected by the travel order, you must follow the city’s quarantine guidelines before you can visit campus and cannot attend on-campus courses in person until your quarantine period has ended. You may need to make alternate arrangements with your professors for the first two weeks of class. Please visit the city’s Emergency Travel Order website, which is updated weekly, for more information.

We will continue to follow our planning principles to keep our community safe. We will keep paying close attention to COVID-19 data and listening to medical and public health experts, and we will bring more students and employees back to campus when we believe we can do so while continuing to effectively manage the potential health risks to the university and local community.

Please know everyone at DePaul is focused on seeing our students through this pandemic. We are here for you, and we look forward to the day when we can see you all on campus again.

A. Gabriel Esteban, Ph.D.

Salma Ghanem, Ph.D.
Interim Provost

Jeff Bethke
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer