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Top Five Questions Answered About Returning to Campus

DePaul campus in the fall
(DePaul University/Jeff Carrion)

After more than a year of learning, working and socializing from home, we understand that DePaul students, faculty and staff may have questions about returning to campus. To help address those inquiries – and for some, concerns – DePaul's Community Health Team outlines the five most common questions and answers below.

Question #1: What is DePaul's position on mask-wearing?

As of June 14, in alignment with Chicago's Phase V in reopening plans, fully vaccinated individuals on campus are highly encouraged — though not required — to wear a face mask indoors. However, individuals who have not been vaccinated are expected to wear a mask at all times.

To Take Care DePaul and to continue to support DePaul's aim to be a mask-friendly campus, vaccinated people who still want to wear a mask for their personal comfort are more than welcome to do so. The DePaul community is expected to support individuals' choices.

Question #2: What are Chicago Transit Authority's and Metra's safety protocols?

Per federal and state mandates, all employees and riders are required to wear a face mask over their nose and mouth at all times while traveling on CTA and Metra.

Furthermore, CTA and Metra implemented a variety of efforts to ensure a safe environment for riders and employees, including:

  • Air on CTA buses and trains is filtered and exchanged about every minute, and doors are frequently opened to bring fresh air into the cabin. As for Metra, they use hospital-grade MERV-3 filters and are currently installing high-tech air filtration and purification systems.
  • Ridership Dashboards are available for CTA and Metra services to help riders determine the least congested times to travel by date and time.
  • Buses, trains and stations are cleaned multiple times each day.

Question #3: Do we need to complete #CampusClear each day to enter a campus building?

The DePaul community is no longer required to show a completed #CampusClear survey prior to entering a DePaul facility.

However, to continue to Take Care DePaul, it is highly recommended that you complete the quick survey. That way you can take a moment to reflect on how you're feeling. If you're showing symptoms, stay home to avoid putting others at risk of getting sick.

Question #4: Did DePaul update buildings' ventilation systems?

Yes! MERV-13 filters have been installed in all air handlers that can accommodate them.

Additionally, the percentage of outside air drawn into buildings has increased, and the start and stop times for all building fans have been extended to ensure that any particles not trapped in filter media are diluted with fresh air to the extent possible.

Question #5: What are DePaul's cleaning protocols for high-traffic areas and high-touch surfaces?

More than 700 sanitizer stations were installed across the Loop and Lincoln Park campuses in hallways, classrooms, office suites, common areas and residence halls. More information on the stations and instructions on how to use the sanitizer on high-touch surfaces is online.

For specifics on DePaul's cleaning and sanitization efforts for different spaces, including common areas, classrooms and offices, please visit the COVID-19 Updates and Guidance website.