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With Healthy Fall 2020 Task Force, Brown plans for next semester

Task force will plan potential reopening of Brown's campus in fall, prepare for health hazards of COVID-19

The University announced the creation of the Healthy Fall 2020 Task Force, which will plan the reopening of Brown’s campus next semester in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic forcing students to evacuate campus last month

President Christina Paxson P’19 wrote that she is “cautiously optimistic” that students will be able to return to campus in the fall in a community-wide email Monday announcing the task force’s creation. But she noted that the task force will have to plan for the health threat COVID-19 will continue to pose.

At a faculty meeting earlier this month, Paxson said the University would be preparing for both on- and off-campus fall semester scenarios, The Herald previously reported.

Administrators, faculty and two students compose the task force, which will begin meeting this month and continue working into the fall semester, according to the email. 

Paxson wrote that the task force’s “foundational principles” will be the health and safety of the Brown community first, then “a high-quality learning and social experience for our students.”

The task force will collaborate with the Rhode Island School of Design because of its shared students and close proximity to the University.

RISD currently anticipates “holding the fall semester in person and starting on time,” but is “carefully watching COVID-19 and assessing how this might affect our plans,” according to their webpage for COVID-19 updates.

Other Ivy League universities have not yet released similar plans regarding the resumption of on-campus activities for the fall semester. 

In addition to the task force’s planning, Paxson also wrote that Provost Richard Locke P’18 and Vice President for Research Jill Pipher are working to plan the resumption of research operations on campus. The University previously decided to halt research to prevent the spread of COVID-19, The Herald reported last month.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.


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