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Resumption of Campus Research Activities

By Julie Chen

UMass Lowell is resuming research activities on a staged basis following the recommendations of the UMass Lowell Fall/Summer 2020 Planning Committee on Research and Scholarship Support, comprised of faculty, staff, students and administrative leadership from across campus. This committee has developed a re-entry plan for campus research that adheres to universitywide policies as well as state and federal guidelines on COVID-19. 

As of June 12, 2020, the university is in Stage 3 of the return to use of research and other university scholarship spaces by those who wish to resume such work on a voluntary basis and receive approval to do so. Stage 3 is expected to continue through early August, with the exact timeframe for Stage 4 to be announced at a later date. 

During Stage 3, the campus remains in shutdown, but limited access to critical, urgent research to maintain progress over the summer will be permitted with advance approval and in compliance with requirements issued by the committee and university for safety and other matters. 

Full details on how research and scholarship spaces will function – as well as standards for health and safety – during this stage will be available in the UMass Lowell 2020 Campus Research and Scholarship Re-Entry Plan can be found on the 2020 Fall Planning website

All activities using research and scholarship spaces must be approved in advance through the UMass Lowell Research & Innovation Opportunities Portal, also known as InfoReady. The application process includes approval for the requested research and scholarship space, the number and type of personnel who may use such space, which hours it is available and health and safety standards, including training requirements. Details on how to access the InfoReady portal and associated requirements to apply are available in the Research Re-entry Plan

In addition to safety requirements outlined in the plan, all research activities will be subject to university re-entry protocols and other requirements for health and safety, including use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and standards for cleaning of research and scholarship space. More information on these is available on UMass Lowell’s COVID-19 website. Members of the university community should check that site as well as the daily Today@UMass Lowell announcements for updates. 

In addition to the Stage 3 plan, which is posted on the university’s website and will be communicated via email, additional important information about use of research facilities and scholarship spaces will be posted at various points on campus. All individuals who are approved to access these locations are required to follow all directions provided via these signs. 

All vendors and other parties that visit the UMass Lowell campus for purposes related to research or use of scholarship space are required to follow all of the same requirements as university personnel, including health and safety rules. Any vendor or other external party with questions about these requirements should consult their UMass Lowell point of contact. 

Noncompliance with any provisions of the Stage 3 plan or other university requirements associated with use of research and scholarship space during this timeframe may result in loss of privileges. Inspections and other spot-checking will be conducted during Stage 3 to ensure all requirements are being followed. Anyone who witnesses activities that do not appear to be in compliance with UMass Lowell Campus Research and Scholarship Re-Entry Plan along with other health and safety guidelines can call UMass Lowell Environmental Health and Safety at 978-934-2618 or email

Faculty, staff, and students who have been approved to use research and scholarship space will have the opportunity to provide feedback on how they feel Stage 3 is progressing including a survey that will be sent to them.