COVID-19 Campus Activity Status

This page provides members of the Brown University community with a guide for complying with current health protocols and required prevention measures while engaged in study, work and living at Brown.

Brown’s Campus Activity Status is at Level 2, as of Feb. 8, 2021. Please consult the list of specific requirements and activity limitations that are in place for current operations. The activities are based on a system of three levels — Level 1/ Level 2/ Level 3 — that offer the Brown community parameters for the range of activities that may be permissible while Brown is at each level, with specified requirements subject to public health guidance. You may review the parameters of each level in the Parameters for Levels 1-3 section of this page.

All students, faculty and staff are expected to align their activities to adhere to the standards currently in place, and in compliance with the COVID-19 Campus Safety Policy. This includes students living on campus as well as those living off campus in the Providence area. Additional restrictions may be in place when any member of our community is in quarantine after traveling to Rhode Island or being exposed to someone who is ill. Please note that the permissible activities for Levels 1-3 (outlined in the drop-down menus at the bottom of this page) are illustrative, and specific guidance is issued when Campus Activity Status Levels are changed.

Requirements and Permissible Activities for Level 2

Based on both the general community parameters for the range of activities permissible at Level 2 status (as outlined in the “Range of Permissible Activities for Levels 1-3” section below) and current public health conditions on and near campus at this time, the following requirements and permissible activities for Level 2 are currently in place.

Masks and social distancing

Masks at all times unless:

  • alone in room/office
  • engaging in personal hygiene
  • dining (note restrictions on dining)
  • outdoors more than 6 ft apart 
  • students: in limited circumstances with pod members (see below for more detailed guidance for students regarding mask wearing)

Masks and social distancing remain among the most important health and safety measures we can take as individuals and a community. All Brown community members, visitors and guests* authorized to be on-campus must wear a mask or face covering when in all University buildings (except when alone in a private office, lab or residence where there is no contact with others), and while in outside public areas where social distancing may be difficult. Face coverings must be worn before entering a University building; while teaching or attending an in-person class or similar activity or function; while walking inside buildings; in areas such as stairwells, hallways, elevators, kitchens and bathrooms; and while working, teaching, studying, conducting research or any other activity in the same area as others. Exceptions are granted for documented health accommodations.

Students dining and socializing in their pods (a stable group of five or less or the number of your immediate room, suite or apartment mates) may do so without a mask, but should be especially careful to wear a mask outside of their pod and avoid crossing pods without a mask and social distancing. 

In February 2021, Brown issued updated recommendations on mask-wearing in light of new guidance from the CDC. Among the highlights of the University's guidance was a strong urge that all members of the community wear a single high-quality mask (such as a KF94) or two masks (e.g., a cotton mask over a surgical mask) when indoors in close proximity to other people for a sustained period of time, or in circumstances where social distancing is difficult to maintain, even for shorter periods of time. This includes, but is not limited to, in-person classroom settings, work in laboratories under an approved Resuming Research plan, picking up meals, going to the mailroom or bookstore, and getting a COVID-19 test.

*Note: Visitors and guests are not currently allowed on campus except as specifically approved in departmental Return to Campus and/or Return to Research plans.  

Learning

  • Undergraduate and graduate classes of 19 students or less can meet in-person. Warren Alpert Medical School classes are in-person.
  • Libraries are open, and undergraduate, graduate and medical students can reserve study space seating using the LibCal Seat Booking tool. Books and other materials ordered through Josiah continue to be available through contactless circulation, with pick-up at the Rockefeller Library lobby.
  • The Kasper Multipurpose Room is available for student use as a reservable study space. The space may also be used to relax in, read, and other low-volume, seated activities. The space includes whiteboards and power for group collaboration or single-use. Mask wearing and social distancing are required. Reservations can be made using the LibCal Seat Booking tool
  • Office hours/advising must be remote unless they can be conducted outdoors with masks and social distancing (e.g., walking office hours)

The Brown Stage 2 Research Resumption remains in effect, with research activities in approved plans allowed. Laboratories can continue to operate in-person research activities consistent with those plans, including undergraduates who are approved to work in labs. See the recent guidance from OVPR for further information.

Dining/Meals

  • Grab-and-go

All students with a spring semester meal plan can go to any dining location (Sharpe Refectory, Verney Woolley, Andrews Commons, Josiah’s) to access meals. Students housed at the Omni will have the option of having meals delivered or accessing meals at any dining unit if on meal plan for the rest of Spring semester. Detailed information and operational hours can be found on the Dining Services website.

Faculty and staff who are members of the Faculty Club can access meals through the Brown to Table program offered curbside at the club.

The Blue Room remains closed.

Socializing and activities

  • Limited University-sponsored and University-organized in-person events approved by senior officers and hosted by staff may take place, preferably outdoors, with mask wearing and social distancing
  • Undergraduate students: Socializing with pod members without masks is permitted (see below for more detail)

Undergraduate students can dine and socialize in their pods (a stable group of five people or less or the number of your immediate room, suite or apartment mates) without a mask, but should be especially careful to wear a mask outside of their pod and avoid crossing pods without a mask and social distancing.

Student organization events, activities and meetings will continue to be virtual. Note that student organizations and leaders will be actively involved in planning and carrying out the University-sponsored and University-organized events described above, while events, activities and meetings that are solely student-run and managed will remain virtual.

Academic and administrative meetings and gatherings continue to be virtual.

Exercise and athletics

  • Outdoors, with masks or social distancing
  • The Nelson Fitness Center, the Katherine Moran Coleman Aquatics Center, and some outdoor recreational athletic facilities will be open for student use, by reservation. More information can be found on the Brown Recreation Bfit booking portal

Intercollegiate athletic teams may practice pursuant to the Ivy League Phase II level of activities. Student-athlete team practices may be held outdoors, with full team practices inclusive of all team members, coaches and support staff. The number of athletes permitted in indoor practices is limited to social distancing by square footage. Masks and social distancing will be required at all times, and personal equipment has been distributed to and will be maintained by individual student-athletes. At this point in time, contact, close drills and intra-squad scrimmaging may not take place in Phase II.  

All community members are strongly encouraged to exercise individually outdoors, on and off campus. Community members are encouraged to take advantage of getting outside as much as possible.

Off-campus engagement and travel guidance

  • Continue to avoid non-essential activities in the community
  • Undergraduate students living on campus: Going off campus for non-essential activities (shopping, bars, dining, fitness and recreation facilities, etc.) is not permitted
  • Undergraduate students: Out-of-state travel permitted only in emergencies and with approval (contact [email protected])
  • Undergraduate students: In-state travel allowed for non-campus based employment and health care and medical appointments

Do not dine in-person at restaurants and do not go to bars.

Additional travel guidance for undergraduate students living on campus can be found on the Travel-related Guidance for Students page.

Other High-Use Campus Facilities and Operations

The Brown Bookstore is open to the Brown community only, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday - Saturday, closed Sunday. A Brown ID is required for entry. 

Operational; see the Brown Card Office website for Spring Term Card Production details.

Operational and online Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Call 401-863-3476 to arrange an appointment.

Operational for Grab and Go; no in-person dining.

Operating remotely.

Operational; service response 401-863-7800 (24/7).

Operating remotely.

Operating remotely.

Operating remotely. All services, contact methods, and hours are listed on the IT Service Center web page.

Libraries are open, and undergraduate, graduate and medical students can reserve study space seating using the LibCal Seat Booking tool. Books and other materials ordered through Josiah continue to be available through contactless circulation, with pickup at the Rockefeller Library lobby.

Open for student mail services. Department mail and packages are available for pickup at the Shipping Services window in the main lobby in Page-Robinson Hall Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Operational 24/7; emergencies, call 401-863-4111, all other calls, 401-863-3322.

Operating remotely; accepting limited requests for in-person transactions by appointment. See the Office of the Registrar website for more information.

Operational.

The Kasper Multipurpose Room is available for student use as a reservable study space. The space may also be used to relax in, read, and other low-volume, seated activities. The space includes whiteboards and power for group collaboration or single-use. Mask wearing and social distancing are required. Reservations can be made using the LibCal Seat Booking tool

Operating remotely.

Operating remotely.

Operational and online: Monday - Thursday, 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Fridays 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; weekends 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Call 401-863-3953 for an appointment. After hours call 401-863-1330.

Range of Permissible Activities for Levels 1-3

Level 1 More Info ►

Masks and social distancing

  • Masks at all times unless:
  • alone in room/office
  • engaging in personal hygiene
  • dining (note the restrictions on dining)
  • outdoors more than 6 ft apart

Learning

  • All undergraduate classes (1 - 1999) remote
  • Office hours/advising remote
  • Libraries closed, subject to re-evaluation in context of health conditions

Dining/Meals

  • Grab-and-go
  • No in-person dining

Socializing and activities

  • Social gatherings or meetings of up to 5 people, preferably outdoors, with masks and/or social distancing, may be permissible with no approval required. No larger events or social functions are permissible unless specifically approved by the Student Activities Office (student organizations) or in Return to Campus plans (administrative and academic departments).
  • No in-person academic or co-curricular meetings or programs except as specifically approved in departmental Return to Campus and/or Return to Research plans

Exercise and athletics

  • Outdoors, on campus, with masks or social distancing
  • No indoor fitness center use, subject to re-evaluation in context of health conditions
  • No organized athletics activities, subject to re-evaluation in context of health conditions

Off-campus engagement

  • All members of the community are strongly discouraged from going to indoor dining and bars
  • Undergraduate students: No visits to commercial establishments other than buying essentials or attending medical appointments
  • No off-campus in-person student activities, including service, employment or academic or administrative programs, except as specifically approved in departmental Return to Campus and/or Return to Research plans
  • Undergraduate students: Out-of-state travel permitted only in emergencies and with approval
Level 2 More Info ►

Masks and social distancing

  • Masks at all times unless:
  • alone in room/office
  • engaging in personal hygiene
  • dining (note restrictions on dining)
  • outdoors more than 6 ft apart
  • with pod members (students)

Learning

  • Undergraduate classes < 20 students may be in person
  • Limited in-person library use, subject to re-evaluation in context of health conditions
  • Office hours/advising may be in person, with masks (required if indoors) and social distancing, subject to evaluation in context of health conditions

Dining/Meals

  • Grab-and-go
  • Possible limited in-person dining with social distancing, based on evaluation in context of health conditions

Socializing and activities

  • Social gatherings or meetings of up to 5 people, preferably outdoors, with masks and/or social distancing, may be permissible with no approval required. Social gatherings or meetings of up to 15 people, preferably outdoors, with masks and/or social distancing, are permissible if and only if approved by the Student Activities Office (student organizations) or in Return to Campus plans (administrative and academic departments).
  • Undergraduate students: Socializing with pod members without masks/social distancing is permitted

Exercise and athletics

  • Outdoors, with masks or social distancing
  • Possible limited indoor fitness center use, based on evaluation in context of health conditions
  • Limited training and practicing in groups of up to 15 people, with masks or social distancing, subject to re-evaluation in context of health conditions

Off-campus engagement

  • Follow city and state guidelines for shopping, dining and public transportation
  • Some off-campus activities may be allowed, based on re-evaluation in context of health conditions
  • Undergraduate students: Out-of-state travel permitted only in emergencies and with approval
Level 3 More Info ►

Masks and social distancing

  • Masks at all times unless:
  • alone in room/office
  • engaging in personal hygiene
  • outdoors more than 6 ft apart
  • with pod members, but pods may increase in size (students)
  • dining while seated (may be required while circulating in shared campus spaces)

Learning

  • Undergraduate classes < 20 students may be in person
  • Extended in-person library use
  • Office hours/advising may be in person, with masks (required if indoors) and social distancing, subject to evaluation in context of health conditions

Dining/Meals

  • In-person dining with social distancing, subject to re-evaluation in context of health conditions
  • More campus eateries open, subject to re-evaluation in context of health conditions

Socializing and activities

  • Indoor and outdoor gatherings and meeting sizes increase, with guidance to be issued for students from the Student Activities Office and for administrative and academic departments from the Provost and EVP for Finance & Administration
  • Undergraduate students: Maximum pod sizes can increase with new guidelines, based on public health conditions

Exercise and athletics

  • Outdoors, with masks or social distancing
  • Expanded indoor fitness center use, subject to re-evaluation in context of health conditions
  • Expanded training and practicing in groups of up to 20 people, with masks or social distancing, subject to re-evaluation in context of health conditions

Off-campus engagement

  • Follow city and state guidelines for shopping, dining and public transportation
  • More off-campus activities may be allowed, based on re-evaluation in context of health conditions
  • Undergraduate students: Out-of-state travel permitted only in emergencies and with approval

How the Activity Levels are Determined

At least twice each week starting when students return to campus, Brown’s Covid-19 Campus Activity Level Review Team will review the data on each of a set of factors (below) that go into assigning the COVID-19 Campus Activity Level. The team will make a recommendation to the President and her senior team as to whether the level should remain the same or be changed.

The factors that go into determining which level the campus is in will be assessed collectively; no single factor by itself should determine the level. The Team will review the results of contact tracing reports and make recommendations on whether any specific actions (over and above changing the level) may reduce the spread of COVID-19 on campus. The Team may also make recommendations about changes to any of the activities permitted under each level.

Factors that go into assessing each level include:

The determination of which Level the campus is in is made after assessing the following factors as a group rather than individually.

  • Rhode Island weekly case incidents
  • Asymptomatic test positivity (of faculty, staff and students in the testing program)
  • Symptomatic test positivity (of faculty, staff and students in the testing program)
  • Isolation and quarantine utilization for students
  • Change in weekly case incidence
  • Faculty/staff absenteeism
  • Test turn-around time (from date of collection)

COVID-19 Testing Dashboard

Covid-19 Campus Activity Level Review Team

  • Russell Carey, Executive Vice President for Planning and Policy (chair)
  • Kimberly Almeida, Director, Benefits Operations
  • Amanda Bailey, Vice President for Human Resources
  • Dr. Vanessa Britto, Associate Vice President for Campus Life and Executive Director of Health and wellness
  • Eric Estes, Vice President for Campus Life
  • Matthew Gagnon, Chief Risk Officer
  • Stephen Morin, Senior Director of Environmental Health & Safety
  • Chloe Poston, Director of Strategic Initiatives, Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity

 

Last updated February 23, 2021. Information on this page may be updated as the University’s planning evolves and/or public health guidance prompts a shift in Brown’s operations and protocols.