July 8, 2020

Dear Sewanee Families,

Last week Vice-Chancellor Brigety sent a summary of our planning for the fall. This week, we provide some additional details on several topics while also answering some of your most frequently asked questions.


Thank you to those who responded to the registrar’s recent survey. Your responses will help us to optimize class schedules and inform our plans for dining, residential life, and other student services.

We also appreciate the questions and comments you have submitted. Two questions are particularly relevant as many of you are finalizing your fall plans

  • What is the status of fall and winter varsity athletics?
  • What classes are being held online and which will be held in person?

We expect to have an update on these two important topics next week. If you have not already responded to the survey sent last week, we encourage you to respond as soon as possible. Even if athletics and mode of instruction have a bearing on your plans for the fall, we ask that you respond to the current survey to help us with classroom scheduling. The current survey deadline has been extended through Thursday, July 16. You will have an opportunity to revise any previous responses when we launch a new survey on July 20, in which we will ask you to finalize your plans no later than July 24, based on additional information you will have received.


Student Life FAQs
  • Move-In Details: Later this week you will receive an email from Residential Life with the specifics about your specific move-in process.
  • Student Events: Parties, meetings, and activities of all sorts will look different this fall. They will be smaller—no more than 50 people—and they will likely take place outside. Proper physical distancing and masking will be required.
  • Interim Policies: It is important that you are aware of the expectations in place during the pandemic. Over the next few weeks we will be sharing updated interim Community Standards.
In the Classroom FAQs
  • Registration: Currently, returning students’ schedules should remain the same. There should be no need to re-register for classes.
  • Class Times: Likewise, we expect classes to take place as planned, according to the days and times listed on your current schedule. There is a possibility that some classes will be rescheduled to avoid crowding in certain spaces.
  • Labs: Faculty are expecting to conduct labs this fall. Like most academic experiences, labs will look a bit different. This may include some creative scheduling—weekend and evening labs, smaller sections, increased use of personal protective equipment, and other measures to keep students and faculty safe. Individual professors may be in contact with their students to provide additional details.
Student Health & Safety FAQs
  • Before you head to campus: Beginning two weeks prior to your assigned arrival day, we recommend that you complete a 14-day quarantine at home. (Please review CDC guidelines for instructions on how to quarantine.) Once the 14-day quarantine period is complete, and if you have no COVID-19 symptoms and no known exposure to COVID-19, you may travel to campus. While in transit, students are expected to maintain physical distancing, wear face coverings, practice frequent hand-washing, and follow all applicable CDC and Tennessee Department of Health guidelines.
  • Testing: The University will test all students for coronavirus infection upon arrival on campus using a self-administered saliva test. Employees will also be tested before the semester starts. The University will also conduct surveillance testing throughout the semester.
  • Masking: On July 3, Vice-Chancellor Brigety issued a masking directive for Sewanee residents and visitors until further notice. For the fall semester, you should expect to wear a face covering over your nose and mouth when in public or inside (other than in your own room), except when: alone, asleep, eating or drinking, distancing (at least six feet), or if you have a documented medical condition that precludes you wearing a face covering. Certain events or facilities may have additional masking rules. You should always have a mask with you, and when in doubt, wear your mask.

Thank you for your input and patience as we prepare for a safe return to the Mountain this fall. If you have additional questions or topics that we have not covered, please share them here.


W. Marichal Gentry, Dean of Students           Terry Papillon, Dean of the College