Student FAQ - Fall 2021

Note that we will update the FAQs and provide future communications on many topics not included at this time, including athletics, off-campus activities, parking, travel, visitors and much more.

Campus

Yes, we plan to operate at normal density in all of our buildings, assuming that doing so is permitted under guidance from the state, city and the CDC.

The majority of classes offered in fall 2021 will be in-person, with the exception of established on-line programs and a small number of Hyflex courses. We need to be prepared to shift to online classes if required by regulations or public health guidelines. Students should plan to come to campus for classes to be taught in-person by the faculty.

This fall, students will be living in on-campus in University residence halls. Students will have roommates. Students will be permitted to sign guests into the buildings according to normal visitor policies.

During the first six weeks of the semester, Suffolk will pool test all residence students and student athletes. Unvaccinated individuals are required to be tested. Individuals in these categories will receive communications from Counseling, Health and Wellness about testing.

The campus will be fully open. Students will be able to meet in-person with faculty and staff assuming that doing so is permitted under guidance from the city, state, and the CDC. Zoom appointments will be available for some services as well.

In-person student life in all forms (student organizations, athletics, student programs and events) will resume fully assuming that doing so is permitted under guidance from the state, city and the CDC. We will still need to be prepared to shift to online activities if required by regulations or public health guidelines.

All members of the campus community — students, faculty, and staff — will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. This requirement applies to all current and incoming students regardless of the number of credits for which they are enrolled. Only students who are on leaves of absence, students studying in fully online programs, and international students studying from their home countries are not required to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

In order to begin the fall semester with a fully vaccinated community, we are requiring all students to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 by Monday, August 16. You must upload documentation of your vaccination(s) into the Student Health Portal in the same manner that you upload all other vaccine-related information.

At this time, Suffolk University is not authorized by the state of Massachusetts to provide COVID-19 vaccinations to students. However, students are encouraged to obtain a COVID-19 vaccination from health care providers and state vaccination programs when they become eligible.

Yes, in some indoor campus locations. As a result of the recent rise in COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts and heightened concerns about the transmissibility of the Delta variant, the University is instituting new indoor face covering campus protocols, effective Monday, August 9.

Until further notice, face coverings will be required in highly trafficked, public areas of campus, including all classrooms, as well as in elevators and building lobbies. Face coverings must also be worn in conference rooms or other meeting and gathering spaces where community members are required to attend in relatively close proximity to others. Over the next two weeks, signs will be placed in public areas, such as classrooms, indicating where masks are required for everyone, including those who are fully vaccinated.

If you are fully vaccinated and in a space where you are able to maintain a reasonable amount of distance from others, and where there is no specific mask requirement, you can lower or take off your mask. For example, a mask is not required while sitting alone in the library. Fully vaccinated residential students also can choose whether to wear masks when in their own residential rooms or in most residential common areas. Moreover, masks do not need to be worn in designated dining areas while actively eating or drinking.

While individuals do not have to wear masks when in their private offices, cubicle spaces, or residential rooms, they can require that masks be worn when other community members or visitors enter those spaces. Because we want to protect all members of our campus community as well as the broader community, if you are politely asked to wear a mask, we ask that you put one on.

All unvaccinated individuals who have received a medical or religious exemption from our vaccination requirement must continue to wear a mask at all times on campus except when alone in a residence room or office.

This policy will also apply to campus visitors.

We understand that you will have some questions about the application of this policy, and we will provide more guidance as questions arise. For now, you can direct your questions to Student Affairs.

Despite recent developments, the public health situation has improved considerably since this time last year. We remain excited about the start of the semester and the return to campus, and we look forward to welcoming you back in the coming weeks.

COVID-19 Information, Health & Safety

The Coronavirus Health Advisory page is updated regularly to keep the Suffolk community well-informed.

As a result of the recent rise in COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts and heightened concerns about the transmissibility of the Delta variant, the University has adjusted its face-covering protocols in accordance with the City of Boston’s new mandate requiring that facemasks be worn in all indoor spaces accessible to the general public.

The University requires that face coverings be worn in all indoor locations on campus with the exception of:

  • Employee work spaces that are not generally open to the public, including private offices, cubicles, and open-floor-plan work spaces
  • Conference rooms when distance can be maintained
  • Dining halls when individuals are actively eating or drinking
  • Residence hall rooms and residence hall lounges; masks are required in residence hall lobbies, elevators, and all other lounges on campus
  • Study rooms and enclosed Library spaces occupied by a single student

All unvaccinated individuals who have received a medical or religious exemption from the University’s vaccination requirement and unvaccinated visitors must continue to wear a mask at all times and in all locations on campus except when alone in an office or in their own residence room.

Fully vaccinated individuals who prefer to wear a mask in spaces exempted from the University’s mask requirement should feel very comfortable doing so. Masks should be worn by employees and students entering someone else’s immediate workspace, unless the employee or student is fully vaccinated and the occupant of the workspace invites the person entering their workspace to remove their mask and that person chooses to do so.

The face covering protocols also apply to campus visitors.

We understand that you will have some questions about the application of this policy, and we will provide more guidance as questions arise. For now, if you are a student, you can direct questions to Student Affairs.

If you are a faculty or staff member, you can direct questions to Human Resources.

Suffolk’s service provider, ABM Industries, cleans campus buildings on a regular schedule consistent with reducing the presence of COVID-19. There are hand sanitizer stations throughout campus and wipe/hand sanitizer stations in all shared spaces.

The Counseling, Health & Wellness Center is open and operational. All medical and counseling services are provided using HIPAA-secure telemedicine and remote access technology. Students can schedule private appointments with providers. The Interfaith Center, Suffolk Cares, the dean of students for SBS & CAS, the dean of students for Law, as well as advising and other student academic services are all in full operation. 

For additional mental health support and other resources see COVID-19 Resources tab.

Navigating Campus

Residence Life & Dining

Yes! Suffolk’s RAs will facilitate group and individual virtual meetings, programs, and Ram Chats to help students transition to the University. They’ll also share information on special virtual programming for resident students throughout the academic year.

Yes, residence students are permitted to have guests who must be signed in to each residence hall. They must follow University guidelines for face coverings, etc.

The dining halls will be open. All cafe transactions will be contactless and cash will not be accepted. Students can also order food for takeout through the GET Food app; self-pickup at a designated location will provide a contact-free experience.

For the most up-to-date information on locations, hours, and dining plan options, visit Dining Services.