UMass Lowell is committed our housing our students safely during the COVID-19 pandemic. The following guide is for residential students.
All students are expected to read and accept the information within this Guide to lower the risk of a potential outbreak of COVID-19.
Students who wish to seek academic accommodations can begin the process by filling out a Public Accommodation Request. Student employees seeking employment accommodations should contact the UML Equal Opportunity and Outreach Office. Students who wish to seek alternative housing due to health reasons should contact the Office of Residence Life.
Students returning to campus will be expected to engage in protective personal behaviors to minimize the chances of the transmission of COVID-19. Students coming to campus are expected to engage in the following measures:
All students are expected to fully comply with the policies, protocols and guidelines. Failure to comply with university directives designed to limit spread/exposure to contagions (including viruses, bacteria, fungi, parasites, etc.) constitutes a violation of the Student Conduct Code, the Residence Life Guidelines or other policies at the university. Students may be held accountable through the conduct process for failing to abide by the policies, protocols and expectations outlined above.
Campus Transportation is operating at a reduced schedule. Occupancy of Campus Transportation has been reduced to support social distancing and protect drivers, likely resulting in extended wait times.
For spring, tentative hours of daytime service will be Monday through Thursday 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Friday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. No evening or weekend service will be available.
All faculty/staff and enrolled students will continue to have access to the LRTA and approved lines on the MVRTA for the spring via their UCard.
If you must take public transportation or use Campus Transportation, wear a face covering before entering the bus and avoid touching surfaces with your hands. Upon disembarking, wash your hands or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol as soon as possible and before removing your mask. Consider alternate forms of transportation to navigate campus: walking, biking (bring your own or use the Free Wheelers), scooters (electric or manual).
Visit Campus Transportation for latest information and hours of operation.
Residence hall services and building office operations will be fully available and will be conducted in a manner that supports social distancing. Service areas will be restructured as necessary (including separation barriers) to facilitate safe interactions with students for packages, keys, etc.
Each residence hall/residential area will continue to be overseen by a professional full-time live-in Area Coordinator or Residence Director. The Area Coordinators and Residence Directors supervise a team of Resident Advisors and are responsible for the overall experience and functioning of the residence halls. Resident Advisors will be placed and assigned in each residence hall based on occupancy numbers. Residence Life staff will provide a 24-hour, seven days a week on call system to address residents’ needs and concerns.
Connection and community are vital to the college experience, the development of students and their mental and emotional well-being. Residence Life staff, in collaboration with other campus partners, will provide a community focused experience that fosters connection among students while supporting social distancing.
To maintain social distancing, restrictions will be applied to campus mail locations. All residential mail will be distributed out of the Fox Hall mailroom. Other locations may reopen as conditions allow.
The Spring 2021 housing model was designed in consultation with medical staff in the Wellness Center and takes into account local, state and federal recommendations for health and safety. In addition, the model is intended to mitigate risk of contagion.
All students living on campus will live in a single unit or single bedroom within a suite/apartment. Housing will be available in Traditional, Suite and Apartment style buildings. All students, regardless of housing type will have a meal plan.
Currently, we have two scenarios we are developing for this spring. The demand we have for campus housing, including the demand for East Campus and South Campus options, will be a factor in the final decision for what we offer. Our plan is to provide students with detailed information by Nov. 12. Here is a summary of the two scenarios we are exploring:
All residents will pay one reduced Housing & Meal Plan rate totaling $7,770 for Spring 2021 semester. This rate includes housing in single occupancy bedroom within a suite or apartment or traditional residence hall, and an unlimited meal plan.
Students, who submit, reactivate or declare their intent to live on campus for the spring by Nov. 10 will be able to participate in room selection. Those that do so after Nov. 10 will be assigned on a space available basis by the Office of Residence Life.
• Students who wish to live on campus this spring, but have not submitted a housing contract should do so through the online housing portal.
• Students who have submitted a contract, are currently living on campus or deferred their contract to the spring should complete the “SPRING 2021 HOUSING INTENT” form on the online housing portal.
• Students who cancelled their housing, but have changed their minds and would like to live on campus should contact the Office of Residence Life at email@example.com to reactivate their contract.
If you are unsure of your status please contact the Office of Residence Life at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that we are experiencing extremely high phone call and email traffic and will do everything we can to get back to you as quickly as possible.
Our plan is that you will receive detailed information about our spring housing selection process by Nov. 12. Selection will then take place in November (tentatively). More details to come – please closely monitor your student email.
Students that need to cancel housing should do so by Nov. 30 to avoid late cancellation charges. Please know that if a student’s course schedule changes to all virtual classes, resulting in the student cancelling housing, the student will not be billed for a late cancellation.
Move-in will be conducted in a manner that supports social distancing including appropriate use of common areas and elevators. The move-in period will be extended to achieve this goal and may include students moving their belongings into their rooms, and returning home until a specified building occupancy date prior to the start of classes.
Specific move-in directions will be developed for students and families including:
Student email will be the main method of communication for all communication. Information will also be posted to the Residence Life website as well as social media platforms.
University Dining will provide a high quality dining experience while taking into account CDC and state guidelines for health and safety. University Dining will engage in extensive cleaning and sanitation protocols to ensure food safety and mitigate the risk of contagion.
Community bathrooms are cleaned by Facilities staff once per day and revisited throughout the day as needed to maintain the APPA-2 standard of cleanliness.
In between these cleanings, cleaning supplies are available for residents to clean sinks and counter tops after activities beyond hand washing, particularly for activities like tooth brushing that release respiratory droplets and saliva.
Residence halls with in-room bathrooms and shared living spaces that are located in the room, suite or apartment fall under the responsibility of the residents occupying that space. During your roommate contract meeting with your RA, you will work to create a cleaning schedule that will meet the minimum established cleaning guidelines.
Elevators: Maintain social distance or ride solo. Please use the stairs whenever possible. If you are using the elevator, wear your face covering and avoid touching the elevator buttons with your exposed hand/fingers. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol upon departing the elevator.
We encourage you to build time in when preparing to leave the building to ensure you are able to arrive on time. If you are physically able to do so, we highly encourage you to use the stairs in your building.
Stairwells and Hallways: Stairwells and hallways are to be used only for travel and are not congregation spaces. Students are expected to be wearing face coverings at all times and remain six feet away whenever possible in common areas of the residence halls including stairwells and hallways.
Laundry Room Usage: In an effort to minimize the number of residents using the laundry room at any given time, and to permit us to maintain our six feet of social distancing expectations, signage will be posted in each laundry area with information regarding hours of operation and usage expectations. River Hawk Village and River Hawk Village Townhouses are exempt from these usage guidelines due to having in-unit laundry machines.
Quarantine separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick and to limit the risk of transmission of disease to others. Even if you feel healthy and well you may be required to quarantine if you have been identified as having had contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19. As we have learned more about the Corona virus, guidance from the Center for Disease Control and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health on the amount of time one should quarantine has changed several times in the course of the last few months. UMass Lowell will follow the most up to date guidance in establishing our protocols.
Students living in the residence halls will quarantine in their current residence hall assignment. They should stay in their bedroom and have no contact with other people for the number of days outlined by public health after their last exposure to someone with known disease. Individuals should only leave their room to get food left at their residence hall door or to use the bathroom in their suite or hall floor and should wear a mask whenever leaving their room. If in a suite, they should not leave the suite except in the case of an emergency such as a fire alarm or medical crisis.
Isolation separates sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick. Students will be required to isolate if they have been diagnosed with COVID-19, or are waiting for test results, have cough, fever, shortness of breath or other symptoms of COVID-19. Current guidance from the Center of Disease Control and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health is that those with COVID-19 remain in isolation for 10 days.
Students testing on campus who have a positive result will be notified by a member of the Health Services staff to discuss initiation of isolation including arrangements for relocation to the ICC for the duration of isolation. If a residential student determines that they wish to isolate off campus they must remain off campus until they are officially released from isolation by public health or other designated public entity and provide Health Services with documentation of that release.
As we continue to live through the COVID-19 pandemic, we want you to know that at UML keeping our community healthy and safe is embedded in everything we do.
With that in mind we’ve developed protocols based on guidance from health officials and have plans in place for students who have a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 to follow an isolation protocol on campus.
To keep you and everyone in our community healthy and safe, as well as for your comfort, we want you to be ready should you test positive for COVID-19 while living on campus.
In an unpredictable time as we continue to live with a pandemic, taking charge of what you are able to control can be a very empowering. Creating a “Go Bag” is something completely in your control and is an important part of being prepared if you are instructed to isolate.
Right now, take about 15 minutes to get a “Go Bag” ready in the event that you need to leave your current room to go to your self-designated off campus isolation location or relocate to the on campus isolation housing as time will be of the essence to minimize exposure to others should you need to move to another space.
The suggested list (below) includes items that you may use on a regular basis - a good strategy might be for you to put all of the items nearby each other so you can gather them quickly.
If you need to be moved to on campus isolation housing, rest assured that basics like a bed, bed linens and meals will be provided.
As you put your Go Bag items together, please keep in mind that should you need to be in isolation, you will be in a different space for a period for about 10 days, so having all of the important stuff in your life ready to go will make life easier for you during that time period.
Here are some suggested items as you consider what to include in your Go Bag.
Doing this now is important as you may have very little time to prepare if you need to be temporarily moved. Having all of this together will allow you to grab and go and have the items you’ll need while away from your residence hall and leave you able to continue with school and personal responsibilities.