Our Ship is Mighty | Navigating to Fall 2020

Shippensburg University is thrilled to welcome students back to campus for a COVID-19-ready fall semester.

Preparing Campus for Students and Success

[Site Updated July 9, 2020]  With guidance from public health officials, trusted leaders in the scientific community, and input from our campus community, Shippensburg University is implementing an in-person fall 2020 experience designed to promote the well-being of our campus community, provide learning opportunities to meet the needs of the community, and deliver quality learning modalities and academic support for our students. The university is deeply committed to the well-being and success of our campus family, Shippensburg community, South Central Pennsylvania and the Commonwealth.

Updates: Undergraduate page July 10, 2020.

Creating a community that is COVID-19-aware to mitigate risk

  • Develop and implement policies and procedures that will support student, faculty and staff well-being.
  • Scale prevention and mitigation capabilities.
  • Implement a phased return to campus for staff and faculty.
  • Implement physical (social) distancing protocols to limit population density on campus and in classrooms.
  • Raise and maintain awareness of the public health risks of COVID-19, and inform each community member of best practices to follow public health and safety guidelines.
  • Maintain flexibility as our community adapts to the physical and social constraints necessary to mitigate risks posed by COVID-19.
  • Create a cohort of leaders to remind all on campus of the policies and protocols and reinforce their universal adoption.

Implementing flexible academic instruction

  • Aug. 17- Nov. 20: Classes offered in-person
  • Courses offer a model of instruction with the majority of coursework in person, supported by a remote-learning component

  • Aug. 10-11: New faculty orientation
  • Aug 11-13: New students arrive to campus
  • Aug 12: Faculty meetings
  • Aug. 13: Fall welcome week kick off
  • Aug. 14-16: Returning students arrive to campus
  • Aug. 17: Regular class schedule begins
  • Sep. 7: Labor Day, University open for class
  • Nov. 20: Last day of classes
  • Nov. 23, 24: Fall Break
  • Nov. 30-Dec. 4: Final exams delivered remotely
  • Undergraduate and Graduate Commencement Dates to be announced

Embracing a wholistic approach to resources and student success

  • Provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to members of the campus community.
  • Install additional sanitizing stations and signage regarding physical distancing throughout campus. 
  • Provide strategies for testing, contact tracing, quarantining and isolation.
  • Offer COVID-19-compliant access to resources such as campus activities, services, events and support on campus.
  • Prioritize resources for enrichment of technology-enabled instruction to support  each course.

Health & Well-being

By adopting recommended polices and procedures, together we will mitigate risk and promote success.

Implementation Plan

Six interdisciplinary teams worked collaboratively to support the safety of our campus and local community.

Modes of Operation

With the goal of fully restoring in-classroom instruction, our plan supports multiple contingencies.

What Might Fall 2020 Look Like?

Undergraduate Students

In-person instruction, select internships,  campus life and activities and academic success support.


Graduate Students

Flexibility, predictability and dedicated academic and career counseling.


Faculty & Staff

Risk assessments and impact to student success will inform work on campus and work at home.


As we navigate to welcoming students, faculty, and staff back to campus for the fall 2020 semester, some details of the plan may change based on continuing developments and revised guidelines and recommendations from the federal government, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE), and Pennsylvania's State System of Higher Education (State System/PASSHE). Shippensburg University is deeply committed to the well-being and success of our campus family, Shippensburg community, south-central Pennsylvania, and the Commonwealth.