COVID-19 and Campus Reopening FAQs

If your question is not addressed below, reach out to Campus Connect via text message at 402.205.0611 or email at

  • View the August 6 webinar for students and parents by clicking here.

  • View the July 21 webinar for students and parents by clicking here.

  • View the June 15 webinar for returning students and families by clicking here.

  • View the June 16 webinar for new/incoming students and families by clicking here.

We know it’s important for students to remain as actively involved in your college experience as possible. We believe that by working together, we’ll create a campus community that will allow everyone to attend classes, participate in activities and athletics, engage in meaningful work, and have a fulfilling social life while limiting the risk of exposure to COVID-19.

Community Health

Hastings College is a conscious community that takes seriously both personal responsibility and the care of others. During the 2020-21 academic year, we will continue to monitor research, all CDC recommendations and all directed health measures. Based on the information available, the following are practices in place for the fall semester. We are asking each person to do their part to maintain the healthiest community possible. Please review the information provided.

Data shows that factors impacting the spread of COVID-19 and other illnesses are:

  • Distance (between people)

  • Time (spent in proximity to others)

  • Barriers (face masks and shields, etc.)

  • Hygiene (handwashing, sanitizing hard surfaces)

Therefore, all members of the Hastings College community are asked to follow practices that sustain a limited-risk environment. Guidelines for classroom practices will be provided as classes begin and we will follow similar requirements throughout campus.

Individual Responsibilities

Required individual responsibilities in shared housing and in campus buildings include:

  1. Monitor health to determine participation in class and within the broader community.

  2. Maintain 6 foot physical distance when possible. Common spaces have been arranged to meet this guideline.

  3. Wear a mask or face shield when indoors and in common/shared spaces.

Spray and wipe down hard surfaces (e.g. tv remotes, countertops, pool sticks, recreational equipment, kitchen appliances/supplies) you’ve used in the community space with the cleaning supplies provided.

Before Returning to Campus

Please make an effort to self-quarantine for two weeks before returning to campus. We recommend you reduce all non-essential contact with individuals outside of your home and avoid environments that may have a high likelihood of community spread or areas that are considered “hot spots.” Wear a mask when you are outside of your home.

We ask that you engage in active self-monitoring:

  • Take your temperature each day using the thermometer you’ll bring to campus with you so you know what your regular, healthy temperature range is on that thermometer.

  • Monitor for symptoms.

    • Fever or chills

    • Cough

    • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

    • Fatigue

    • Muscle or body aches

    • Headache

    • New loss of taste or smell

    • Sore throat

    • Congestion or runny nose

    • Nausea or vomiting

    • Diarrhea

If you have a temperature or other COVID-19 symptoms prior to move-in, contact Dr. Lisa Smith at to arrange an alternative move-in date and plan.


Upon return to campus, testing will be made available through public health, at no cost to you, should you show related symptoms. All students will have the support of Stone Health Center staff to help make appropriate decisions regarding symptoms and testing. The housing staff will also work with you on an individual basis to provide the support you need.

Move-in Procedures and Dates

All returning students living in campus housing will need to sign up for a two-hour move-in block. Sign-up links will be emailed to residents the week of July 13 (this week), so please pay close attention to email. During these two hour move-in windows, you are allowed to have no more than three helpers assist you. We’ll send additional move-in information as we approach August.

  • All involved with move-in are required to wear masks.

  • Check-in tables will be outside your building/complex.

  • Depending on the building you live in, you may have traffic flow directions.

  • We will strictly follow the move-in schedule. Plan accordingly.

Move-In Dates

August 8 & 9 RA’s & ARA’s

August 11 Welcome Home Committee

August 12 CORE100 Facilitators/Fall Sports Upper Class/PHIVE-O

August 13 Fall Sports Rookies/Forensic/Band/Cross Country

August 14 Honors/Incoming Scott’s Scholars/Cheer & Dance

August 15-16 First Year Students

August 16-17 Returning Students

*Limited to you and 3 people for move-in*

Preparing to Return to Campus Living

There are additional health-related items you need to bring this year. These items include:

  • Masks – All Hastings College students will be provided one cloth mask, but consider having enough for laundering and daily use (one mask per day);

  • Thermometer that you are familiar with (and extra batteries);

  • Over-the-counter COVID-19 relief items such as:

    • Acetaminophen and ibuprofen (allowing you to rotate between the two if appropriate), cough drops or other symptom-relieving medications;

  • Facial tissue and hand sanitizer for personal use;

  • Anti-bacterial/viral cleaning supplies for your personal use; cleaning supplies will be provided in public spaces, residential halls and in classrooms across campus;

  • Personal supplies for academic work such as highlighters, dry-erase markers and other items you might use in a classroom or study session;

  • Outdoor items such as insect repellent, sunscreen, a camp chair and an outdoor blanket. These will be useful as you physically distance yourself from others and participate in activities.

Additional Considerations:

  • Residents are required to wear masks when in public areas of all campus housing. These areas include bathrooms, lounges, kitchens, laundry rooms and hallways.

  • Building access will be limited to only students assigned to live in that space and, during this time, students may not have overnight visitors in their room.

  • You are encouraged to socialize outdoors while practicing physical distancing.

  • The less you go back and forth between your hometown (or other off-campus locations) and Hastings College, the less you risk inadvertently carrying the virus between communities. Please plan accordingly.

Quarantine/Isolation Plan

There’s no way we can completely remove the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Plan ahead as to what you will do in the event that you are required to quarantine or isolate.

  • Quarantine: a separation from others if a person is not showing symptoms but has been exposed, or believes they may have been exposed to coronavirus.

  • Isolation: a separation from others when one has symptoms and is waiting for test results or has tested positive.

Hastings College asks that students quarantine/isolate in a predetermined off-campus location, whether that is at a family home or somewhere else where you can get the support you need while being separated from others (with your own bedroom and preferably your own restroom).

However, we know for some students this is unfeasible due to their distance from home, people in the home who are immunocompromised or lack of adequate space in a home to separate from others. Hastings College will have limited spaces available for isolation and quarantine for those who are not able to leave campus. However, having an off campus plan is highly recommended.

How is Hastings College making decisions regarding opening campus up for the fall semester?

We have been utilizing information from the State of Nebraska as well as working with local officials at the South Heartland District Health Department and colleagues at Mary Lanning Healthcare. We are grateful for the guidance and support our local experts have provided us as we navigate the safest and best way for students to come back to campus.

When will classes start? Is Hastings College following its academic calendar in the fall?

Hastings College will welcome students back to campus in August, with Block 1 classes beginning on schedule on Wednesday, August 19. We will maintain our current academic calendar, including breaks. The semester will conclude on Friday, December 18. Here is a link to our academic calendar.

Should the need arise to move classes online due to a health concern, faculty are prepared to do so utilizing our mobile technology and campus management software.

When can students move to campus?

The Student Engagement Team is working on a schedule for all students to return to campus. This will include students participating in fall athletics and other activities that usually happen before classes begin.

Estimated move-in dates are included below.

  • August 12-16 — fall athletes move in (coaches will notify athletes with details)

  • August 15-16 — incoming first year students move in (details to come)

  • August 16-18 — returning students move in (details to come)

Students will be notified of their move-in date and time via their Hastings College email.

Will students be required to get a coronavirus test before coming to campus?

No. The current guidance from the State of Nebraska and Directed Health Measures are not recommending campuswide testing for students.

When can students move to campus?

The Student Engagement Team is working on a schedule for all students to return to campus. This will include students participating in fall athletics. Here are the dates:

  • August 12-16 — fall athletes move in (coaches will notify athletes with details)

  • August 15-16 — incoming first year students move in (details to come)

  • August 16-18 — returning students move in (details to come)

Students, details will be sent soon to your Hastings College email.

Will students be required to wear a mask?

This depends on Directed Health Measures that are set by the State of Nebraska and other recommendations. Hastings College will purchase a mask for every student and College employee, but will make a decision on regulations related to wearing masks on campus when we get closer to August.

What if a student tests positive for COVID-19 while on campus?

Should a student test positive for COVID-19, we are maintaining space in college-owned housing adjacent to campus where students can be isolated. These students will have food and other necessary items delivered to them and, depending on how they feel, can still participate in classes online.

Can a student get tested for COVID-19 at the Health Center?

COVID-19 tests will not be available at the Health Center. Instead, testing will be coordinated through our Health District and MaryLanning — our campus nurse will help coordinate testing as needed.

What are plans for the residence halls?

We will host students in residence halls and encourage proper hygiene and health behaviors to keep everyone healthy. Both single and double rooms are still available for students to select. Contact for more information.

Will it be safe to eat in the dining hall?

We are working with our food service provider, FreshIdeas, to make updates to our dining plans. This may include additional seating in spaces adjacent to the dining hall, more to go options and increased meal times.

Is Hastings College hosting fall athletic contests?

Yes. The Great Plains Athletic Conference released information on hosting fall sports. Fall sports can begin practices no earlier than Saturday, August 15. The number of games will be reduced for fall sports, and conference tournaments will happen, but schedules are still being developed. More details are available here.

Will classrooms be cleaned regularly? Or hand sanitizer more available?

The daily class schedule will be adjusted to allow more time between classes. This will allow common surfaces in each classroom can be cleaned with disinfectant in each space.

Additional hand sanitizer stations will be made available in all campus buildings.

Will there be changes to other student groups/organizations?

There may be modifications for the coming year to help keeping group members healthy, but details will be worked out later.