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Carthage and COVID-19

Calendar Modifications

Carthage will modify our fall semester calendar to help minimize risk. We will begin the fall semester one week early, stagger residential students’ arrival to allow for social distancing during move-in, and finish the semester with one week of remote instruction. 

What’s changing?


  • First-year residential students will now move in over three days instead of one: Friday, Aug. 28; Saturday, Aug 29; and Sunday, Aug. 30. First-year students will receive more information on their exact arrival times.
  • First-year residential and commuter students will participate in orientation activities on campus Sunday, Aug. 30-Tuesday, Sept. 1. First-year students will receive more information on their individual orientation schedules.
  • Fall semester classes will begin on Wednesday, Sept. 2.
  • The first three days of Fall 2020 classes will be remote instruction only.
  • Returning residential, off-campus, and commuter students will return to campus in groups Friday, Sept. 4-Sunday, Sept. 6, to complete check-in and, for residential students, move into their residence halls. Look for a more detailed schedule on this website and in The Bridge in mid-July.
  • The first day of in-person classes will be Monday, Sept. 7.
  • There will be no fall break.
  • The last day of in-person classes will be Tuesday, Nov. 24.
  • All classes will resume remotely after Thanksgiving Break, Monday, Nov. 30-Friday, Dec. 4.
  • Final exams will be held remotely Monday, Dec. 7-Wednesday, Dec. 9.

The new Fall 2020 calendar


Aug. 10-28, 2020

Early arrival and move-in for all fall sport athletes, residential life student staff, transition program student leaders, and international students. These students will receive a more detailed schedule of arrival through email. 

Aug. 28

Arrival and move-in for orientation leaders, First Gen Student mentors, international students, and the first group of first-year residential students. All students will receive a more detailed schedule of arrival through email. 

Aug. 29-30

First-year residential student arrival continues; first-year commuter student arrival. Students will receive a more detailed schedule of arrival through email. 

Aug. 30-SEPT. 1

New Student Orientation activities for residential and commuter students. All new students will receive additional information in mid-July. 

Wednesday, Sept. 2

First day of fall semester classes! The first three days of classes will be online. First-year residential students will participate in classes from their residence hall rooms; commuter students and all returning students will participate in classes from home. This allows us to limit how many students are on campus for that first week, while giving new students time to adjust. 

Sept. 4-6

Returning residential, off-campus, and commuter students return to campus in groups to complete check-in. Residential students move into their residence halls. Look for a more detailed schedule on this website and in The Bridge in mid-July.

Monday, Sept. 7 (Labor Day)

First day of in-person classes! Some classes will continue to be online only, due to space needs or faculty health concerns. Students with online classes will be notified so they can make changes if desired. Remote classes must be synchronous on this day (meaning the class must be held at a scheduled meeting time).

Oct. 14

Reading Day. There will not be a Fall Break in Fall 2020. 

Nov. 24

Last day of in-person classes for Fall 2020. Residence halls will close for Thanksgiving Break and stay closed until J-Term. Residential students may request extended stay housing to remain on campus. (Common reasons for extended say include athletics, campus employment, extenuating family circumstances, or international students.)

Nov. 25-27

Thanksgiving Break

Nov. 30

Classes resume for one week of remote teaching and learning.

Dec. 7-9

Remote final exams. 

Why is the calendar changing?


All decisions for the fall semester were made to provide our students with the best possible education, while taking important steps to protect the health of our entire campus community.

  • Having residential students move into halls in waves will allow for important social distancing during the move-in process, as well as additional time to reinforce the new health and safety behaviors that will be expected of all community members.
  • Starting the semester with three days of remote instruction allows for the staggered move-in schedule.
  • Ending in-person classes just before Thanksgiving helps Carthage avoid the risk of a large on-campus outbreak triggered by students returning from Thanksgiving break.
  • In-person classes begin on Labor Day and Fall Break has been eliminated because outbreaks may also result from long weekends that routinely facilitate four- or five-day absences from campus.
  • All calendar changes were made in accordance with the requirements of our institutional accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission.

J-Term and Spring 2021


Given our limited ability to forecast the circumstances that may exist this winter, there are no planned changes to the start of J-Term and Spring 2021 at this time. The Operational Scenario Planning Group has recommended consolidating Easter Break and Spring Break into a single two-week break March 26-April 5. A decision regarding both breaks will be made in late February or early March.