Georgetown University will no longer host first-year students on campus, and all students will begin the semester taking all classes online, university administrators announced Wednesday.
The university had previously announced in early July that it would house around 2000 students — including the entire class of 2024 — on campus and host some classes in a hybrid format. Students who have been approved to live on campus will still be able to live in campus residences. Freshmen in difficult housing situations will be able to apply for on-campus housing. Upperclassmen will not be able to reapply for on-campus housing, but those who were rejected maintain the right to appeal their decision if their circumstances have changed by emailing [email protected]. All first-year students on F-1 visas will be invited to live on campus, according to a follow-up email from Provost Robert Groves.
“This was a very difficult decision—and one that I know will disappoint members of our community who have been eagerly anticipating a return to campus,” University President John J. DeGioia (CAS ’79, GRD ’95) wrote in an email to students.
All undergraduate classes will begin online, and all graduate courses will be online for at least the first four weeks of the fall semester. The university may resume in-person instruction should health conditions improve.
“We will continue to monitor pandemic and public health conditions to determine when it may be possible to resume in-person courses and other in-person, on-campus activities,” DeGioia wrote. “Specific guidance regarding a transition from all-virtual mode will be shared by academic leaders.”
In light of the curricular changes, the university has also decided to reduce tuition by 10% for all undergraduates, expanding the discount that had only applied to students living off campus. Tuition for graduate students will also be reduced by 5%; the university previously planned to leave graduate student tuition constant.
George Washington University walked back its decision to invite all of its students back to campus on Monday, deciding to host all classes online and cut tuition by 10%.
On July 24, the Washington, D.C. government issued an order mandating that anyone travelling to D.C. from a “high-risk area” for non-essential activities self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival in the District. The order will remain in effect through Oct. 9, 2020, or until the city ends its state of emergency.
The city has designated 27 states — including California, Florida and Texas — as high-risk areas. Individuals returning or arriving to the District from high-risk areas after essential travel need to only monitor their symptoms and limit their contact with others. Nationwide, the COVID-19 pandemic is worsening as infection and casualty numbers continue to climb.
This is a developing story.