Move-in dates for campus housing pushed back at least two weeks

In-person classes will also be administered online for the first two weeks of the semester.

Freshman+Marissa+Mazzetta+loads+her+belongings+in+preparation+for+her+return+to+Illinois+with+her+father%2C+Jim+Mazzetta%2C+at+Middlebrook+Hall+on+Saturday%2C+March+21.+Mazzetta%2C+like+many+freshmen+at+the+University+of+Minnesota%2C+moved+out+of+University+housing+as+a+result+of+COVID-19.

Freshman Marissa Mazzetta loads her belongings in preparation for her return to Illinois with her father, Jim Mazzetta, at Middlebrook Hall on Saturday, March 21. Mazzetta, like many freshmen at the University of Minnesota, moved out of University housing as a result of COVID-19.

Hana Ikramuddin

The University of Minnesota has chosen to push back move-in dates for on-campus housing and delay the in-person component of courses for students on the Duluth, Rochester, and the Twin Cities campuses by “at least two weeks,” according to a University-wide email sent out Friday by President Joan Gabel. 

The email also stated University housing will still allow international or other students who do not have a place to stay without on-campus housing to move into facilities on campus.

The delay impacts all undergraduate in-person or hybrid classes, which will now be entirely online for a minimum of the first two weeks of the semester. More details will be released after a special Board of Regents meeting Monday.

The move does not impact the course modes for graduate and professional students, as the smaller number of students provides  “a higher degree of protection” from COVID-19 transmission, Gabel’s email stated.

In several emails to Gabel and regent members, students have spoken out in response to the announcement. They ask that the University allow students to cancel their housing contracts if they choose, while allowing others to move onto campus. 

The nearly identical emails, based on a template posted in the class of 2024 Facebook page, also noted the announcement came over a week before students were scheduled to move in.  Students have established a petition which asks for the University to allow students to cancel their housing contracts and allow other students to move onto campus, among other demands. As of publication, the petition, which also asks the University to test and quarantine students for the virus when they arrive on campus, has over 1,200 signatures.

Gabel also stated in the email that the move-in delay could help avoid a scenario in which students move into dorms and residence halls on campus, but are immediately required to leave due to the coronavirus.

The president’s proposal comes as other colleges are closing student housing due to spikes in reported cases, while some universities have chosen to remain online altogether.

The delay will not be implemented on the Crookston or Morris campuses.