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RC COVID-19 Updates and Policy Changes

We know that there is a lot of information emerging about Fall 2020, and the Residential College is working to communicate updates to support the health and needs of our students. We will update this page as new information becomes available. 


Today, the Washtenaw County Health Department, in collaboration with the university, issued a 14-day Stay in Place order for our undergraduate students, which goes into effect immediately. We fully support this action, as it enhances protections for our students and the welfare of our community. We also are implementing steps beyond the order out of an abundance of caution and to provide choices for students and instructors, including moving more of our undergraduate courses to fully remote instruction. To read more about the order, see the Campus Maize & Blueprint Website



Class Instruction

By  August 7, updates to course instruction format (in-person, remote, hybrid) will be finalized and you will be able to edit your schedule in Wolverine Access. Currently available data and registrations imply that approximately 70 percent of credits for undergraduates can be taken remote this fall; many hybrid courses also offer the option to attend remotely as well. There is no requirement to return to campus for your coursework for most majors. New international students who plan to study in the U.S. for Fall Term 2020 must choose some in-person or hybrid classes, and be enrolled full-time. They are not limited to a specific number of online credits, but their classes cannot be completely online.

Before you arrive on campus
All U-M students who do decide to return to campus must observe a 14-day period of enhanced social distance at home before arriving in Ann Arbor or on campus. It is an important part of our strategy to minimize risk and keep COVID-19 out of our community.

During this 14-day period, you need to monitor your health, reduce your contact with others and follow guidance consistent with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including:
•    Taking your temperature two times a day and monitor for fever.
•    Watching for cough, trouble breathing or additional COVID-19 symptoms.
•    Staying home and avoiding contact with others outside of your home. Do not go to work, school or social gatherings.
•    Avoiding public transportation, taxis or ride-shares.
•    Maintaining a physical distance from others (about 6 feet).
•    Wearing a face covering when in public settings or while interacting with others outside of the home.
•    Seeking medical attention if you develop a fever, other symptoms and/or test positive for COVID-19. Do not come to campus until you receive further instructions.

Also during this time, you will be asked to complete an online learning module that serves as an overview of COVID-19: what it is, its symptoms, and best practices for staying safe. More details on how to access the module will be available soon.

Arrivals from international locations
For students arriving on campus directly from international locations, your 14-day period of enhanced social distancing begins when you arrive, and can be done in your residence on- or off-campus. Depending on your arrival date, this 14-day period may overlap with the start of classes and you are expected not to go to (in-person) class until your 14-day period is complete. It is important that you communicate with your instructor(s) directly to determine appropriate academic adjustments during this 14-day period. 

Arrivals from designated domestic locations
Students arriving from designated domestic locations who may need to practice enhanced social distancing after arrival will be expected to observe guidance from the State of Michigan or Washtenaw County Health Department that is in effect at the time of your arrival. Currently, there is no additional guidance to observe.

Pre-arrival testing
Students moving into U-M Housing (residence halls and apartments) are expected to be tested for the virus that causes COVID-19 - and cleared – prior to their arrival in Ann Arbor. U-M is partnering with Quest Diagnostics to provide testing kits, at no additional cost, directly to students for you to self-administer and then mail back to Quest for analysis. If you are planning to live in U-M Housing, you will receive an email this week with additional information and instructions on testing.

After you arrive on campus
Wolverine Culture of Care

The first weeks of the semester are high-risk for spreading COVID-19 in our community, and it is important to reduce your risk by wearing face coverings on campus and on U-M transportation, maintaining social distancing, practicing frequent hand washing, avoiding large gatherings, and staying home when sick. Each of these actions are an important part of our multilayer approach to reducing the spread of COVID-19 and protecting you and everyone else in the U-M community. The Division of Student Life worked closely with U-M students across campus this summer to develop the Wolverine Culture of Care — a commitment to keeping the U-M campus community as healthy and safe as possible. We encourage you to review and share these guidelines as a reminder on how to best care for yourself and to be respectful of your shared responsibility for the health of others.

 Testing, quarantine and isolation

To respond to the presence of COVID-19 in our community, UM is building a robust plan for evaluation of students with suspected symptoms of COVID-19, including testing when indicated, through University Health Services. U-M’s Environment, Health and Safety department will continue to work closely with local public health officials to perform contact tracing for all infected students as has occurred throughout the pandemic. UM also will have support and space, both on and off campus, available for any student that develops symptoms or tests positive, and needs to quarantine or isolate safely.  This includes meal delivery. Additional details will be shared soon. In addition, students will be expected to check themselves for COVID-19 symptoms each day by answering a small set of questions using our daily symptom checker app, ResponsiBLUE, which offers advice on where to seek care if you are not well. This app will be available soon. Currently, the U-M community is using the web app



  • Updates from UM Housing FAQ:
    • We understand that you may still be waiting for more information before confirming that you are coming to campus. By signing and submitting your contract within 5 days of receiving it, you will reserve your space in Michigan Housing. If you decide you no longer need the space, let us know by emailing If you terminate your contract by August 14, Michigan Housing will waive the early termination fee and will let you out of your contract at no charge. If you do not terminate your contract by August 14, all contract terms remain in effect.
  • RC Students do not have a designated move-in date. RC students will move in 8/24-8/30 and will be assigned a date and time that will be communicated by Housing.

  • We have received several questions about living off campus for the fall 2020 term and potentially moving into East Quad for the winter 2021 term.  At this time, there is no guarantee we would be able to provide Winter 2021 housing if a student does not live with us in Fall 2020. However, we anticipate housing applications for winter term will be released in late fall. 

  • The Wolverine Culture of Care has been added to the campus Maize and Blueprint and you can see it here:  

  • RC Forums will still be taking place in Fall 2020, but in the interest of protecting our community's health and safety, no required forum meetings will be taking place in-person. This means that forum meetings will have to be held online/virtually. We strongly discourage any in-person forum meetings at all, but if there are any in-person meetings scheduled, face covering and social distancing guidelines must be met, and these meetings cannot be required for forum credit. Holding and attending inter-forum events will be optional (no longer required for credit), and must be conducted virtually if they do take place.


  • All residence halls on campus are expected to be at full capacity (including East Quad) and students who are placed in doubles will have roommates. Each room is considered a "household unit." Students are expected to adhere to social distancing/safety guidelines informed by the State of Michigan policies when outside their rooms. This means face coverings are expected to be worn by students in hallways, elevators, staircases, etc. but not within their actual dorm room.

  • The CLAM is a document that students must agree to when signing their Housing contract. We recommend taking a look at the COVID updates.  

  • Resident bathrooms will have increased cleaning and some bathrooms will have plastic dividers between sinks and signage on mirrors encouraging students to use every other sink. However, if a bathroom appears full, it is the student's responsibility to use another bathroom where they can socially distance.  

  • Lounges and public spaces in residence halls will be entirely offline for at least the first four weeks of the term. If things are going well, the lounges may open up to a socially distanced capacity.  

  • The Community Center/mailroom, laundry areas, and computer labs in residences halls will be open, but what this will actually look like is still being finalized. 

  • Dining Halls will still be open for students but will have reduced capacity and require social distancing. Students are encouraged to order their food off of an MDining app that they can pick up without eating inside the Dining Halls. Students will also be able to reserve tables inside the Dining Halls ahead of time.  

  • Student move-in has been extended from a few days to an entire week 8/34-8/30. Students will receive emails in a few weeks from Housing with more information about their move-in timeslot and date (as well as roommate information). 


The word of the season has been "unprecedented." The ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic has shifted all of our lives in uncountable ways, from cancellations of annual events, to financial hardship, to the loss of family members and loved ones. I want to recognize that this situation has not been easy on anyone, and it continues to disproportionately impact some more than others in our community. It is times like this when I am extremely grateful for the resilience, creativity, and compassion found throughout the entire RC community.

The Residential College strives to be a resource and an ally in this challenging and uncertain time. It is our goal to support the needs of our students from prospective high school seniors to RC alumni, and to adjust our policies and expectations of our students when the situation demands.

For the 2020-2021 academic year, the Residential College's two-year residential requirement will be waived for all incoming first-year students and all returning sophomore students. If you are most comfortable with commuting from home, living off-campus, or engaging in an entirely virtual format from out of town, state, or country, we will support you in this decision and you will not be penalized for living outside of East Quad and the RC.

Incoming first-years and current RC sophomores will not be expected to make up this year (2020-2021) of the RC residential requirement if you choose not to reside in East Quad for the coming academic year. However, It is expected that all incoming first-year students will complete the second year of the RC residential requirement by living on campus in East Quad for their sophomore year (2021-2022 academic year).

We also ask that you let the RC know of your plans so we can still stay connected and engaged, even when we're not all physically in the same place. You can do this by filling out this form. Students will receive more information about next steps as it relates to Housing in the coming weeks.     

Here are some other links that we hope are helpful:

Details about the student experience for Fall 2020 on the Campus Blueprint website

Dean Curzan's message to LSA (including RC) students June 22

President Schlissel's June 22 announcement about Fall 2020 

Winter 2020 Grading Policy