YSU intends full re-opening for Fall Semester

University releases guidelines for employees to return to campus

Youngstown State University announced today plans for the incremental safe return of employees to campus through the summer in anticipation of students starting the Fall Semester in August.

“After meeting the challenges of a Spring Semester interrupted by the coronavirus, we are now ready to move into a new phase of our pandemic response,” President Jim Tressel said. “While this phase still includes many uncertainties, it also presents numerous opportunities. One of those opportunities is returning our employees to campus.”

Tressel also said that, at this time, the university is developing plans with the intention to fully open campus for Fall Semester as scheduled on Aug. 17, acknowledging that those plans are dependent on the future course of the pandemic.

“We look forward to us all getting back together to begin another academic year,” he said.

Most YSU employees have been working off campus since mid-March, when the university moved all classes to remote instruction due to the coronavirus outbreak. Remote instruction continues during Summer Semester.

Today, the university released a “Returning to Work on Campus” plan that outlines a gradual resumption of on-campus work leading up to Aug. 17, the first day of Fall Semester classes.

“YSU’s response to the coronavirus has been and will continue to be guided foremost by the safety of our students, faculty, staff and the public,” the plan says. “As we gradually move forward to re-engaging on campus, our primary goal is to ensure everyone’s well-being while continuing to offer high-quality educational services.”

The plan outlines facility preparations, health and safety protocols, symptom monitoring, social distancing and health hygiene actions, and also includes answers to frequently asked questions about returning to campus. The university also emphasizes that, due to the uncertain and ever-changing nature of the pandemic, the plan will be updated as appropriate as more information becomes available.

The document was developed by the Take Charge of Our Future Focus Group on Calendar Scenarios for a Safe YSU, the YSU Office of Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety, and the YSU Office of Human Resources, and it is fully aligned with guidance from the Governor, the Ohio Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.