Returning to Campus

How will I get from the Rec Center to my campus residence after my initial COVID-19 test?

A campus shuttle will be available at the Rec Center to transport you and your belongings after you complete your test. Shuttles will run a loop approximately every 20 minutes between noon and 8 p.m. on January 9 and 10. Drop-off locations include the Davis parking lot (for access to Musser, Townhouses, Complex, etc.) and 1st and Maple streets (for access to Cassat, James, Watson, Evans, Nourse, Myers, etc.).

What should I do if I’m scheduled to arrive outside of the college’s scheduled testing windows?

If your arrival time is not between noon and 8 p.m. on January 9 or 10, please see if adjustments to your travel plans can be made. If your plans cannot be changed, email as soon as possible and communicate your arrival plans. Staff will work with you to schedule your COVID-19 test and arrange for access to your residence.

I don’t have my OneCard. What should I do?

If you have lost your OneCard or have yet to receive one as a first-year student, please contact Campus Services prior to your arrival. You must have your OneCard with you when you arrive on campus.

Will transportation be available to bring students to campus from the airport on January 9 and 10?

Yes. Northfield Lines will be running buses to campus on January 9 and 10. Ignore the notice on the Northfield Lines website that says the Metro Express is not running on these dates; you may purchase tickets for the 9th or 10th.

For additional information, visit Carleton’s Transportation website or contact Northfield Lines directly. While Carleton recommends Northfield Lines as the best way of getting to and from the airport, the service is not run by Carleton.

When should I plan to return to campus for Winter Term?

You should plan to return on Saturday, January 9, or Sunday, January 10—after the first week of online classes. You will get access to your residential space only after completing your initial COVID-19 test, so you should plan your arrival based on your testing slot.

Why did the college decide to push back move-in days for Winter Term?

We want students to avoid traveling right after the new year when airports are likely to be busiest. We also hope to better insulate the campus from any COVID-19 infections that may have been contracted over the holidays.

I’m facing a financial hardship due to changing travel plans. Can the college help me?

Yes. You may apply for emergency funding through the Dean of Students Office. Many airlines are not charging change fees at this time; you should first contact your airline to determine whether additional costs will be incurred.

Do I need to get tested for COVID-19 prior to returning to campus?

If possible, it is recommended that students get tested for COVID-19 before traveling back to Northfield. All students will be tested for COVID-19 immediately upon arrival to campus and again about one week later.

Where do I get tested upon my arrival to campus?

The first round of student tests will take place from noon-8 p.m. on January 9 and 10 in the Recreation Center. The link to sign up for a testing slot was sent to you by email. You will have access to your residential space only after completing this initial test.

How long will it take to get my initial test results?

We expect to receive results within 24 hours.

Campus Expectations

May I leave campus to go into Northfield?

You should limit your off-campus excursions to necessary activities such as attending medical appointments, picking up groceries or medication, and going to work. Exercising outdoors near campus is permitted after the initial “lie low” period. You must maintain the same physical distancing and masking behaviors off campus as are required on campus.

Students who are in isolation or quarantine should follow the guidance of Student Health and Counseling and the Case Investigation and Contact Tracing team.

What are the rules regarding social gatherings?

The Covenant requires that students follow Minnesota Department of Health guidelines for social gatherings. You must wear a mask and maintain at least a 6-foot distance from others when indoors and around those with whom you do not share a living space. Residential Life has communicated additional guidelines (e.g., having fewer than 10 people in your room) directly to students. The college will investigate and issue sanctions according to the Covenant Sanction Guidelines to individuals who do not follow these protocols. 

Why is the seasonal influenza vaccination required?

Compounding the COVID-19 pandemic with an influenza outbreak on Carleton’s campus could place the community’s health and safety at risk, decrease the likelihood that the 2021 academic year is completed in-person, and stress local medical resources. As an additional measure to help keep our community safe, all students and employees who are living, working or learning on campus are required to receive a seasonal flu vaccine.

Students can work with Disability Services to request a medical accommodation or Associate Dean of Students Joe Baggot to request a religious accommodation regarding the seasonal influenza vaccination requirement.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) recommend that everyone over the age of 6 months receive a seasonal flu vaccine every year.

Additional information regarding flu vaccines:

CDC- Seasonal Flu Shot

CDC- Misconceptions about Seasonal Flu and Flu Vaccines

MDH- Influenza

Mayo Clinic- Flu Shot: Your best bet for avoiding influenza

What are the rules regarding overnight off-campus travel?

You are expected to avoid unnecessary travel. In order to ensure the safety of the community, we require any student who needs to complete an overnight visit off campus to notify us of their travel prior to departure and, upon return, to self-monitor and take an on-campus COVID-19 test at their own expense ($150). “Self-monitoring” means you will have a designated space to live for 10 days, take all meals grab and go, and not be able to attend face-to-face classes or use public spaces, among other restrictions. These updated guidelines are necessary to ensure the health and safety of the entire community, particularly as transmission rates are rising here in Minnesota and across the country.   

If you have plans for overnight travel, please complete the COVID19 Overnight Visit form.

What behaviors are expected of students?

The Carleton Community Covenant—which all students, faculty, and staff who are living, learning or working on campus are required to sign—establishes clear behavior expectations for students. The Dean of Students Office has developed student sanction guidelines for violations of the covenant.

Are visitors and outside speakers allowed on campus?

Visitors are discouraged from coming to campus during the COVID-19 pandemic. Only those individuals who have been approved to live on campus or in the Northfield Option are allowed to visit students inside campus residences. You may visit with off-campus guests in outside locations with appropriate precautions. Most events with outside speakers are being held remotely.

When and where am I required to wear a mask?

All students, faculty, staff and visitors on campus are required to wear a mask that covers both their nose and mouth at all times while in the presence of others or while in indoor public spaces.

You do not need to wear a mask when you are in your room/house by yourself or with others with whom you live. You may also remove your mask when eating or toothbrushing. You should wear masks outside when it is difficult to maintain a six-foot distance from others.

What type of mask should I wear?

The College provided two cloth masks to every student upon arrival on campus. We have additional masks available in the Dean of Students Office, but you are encouraged to bring your own from home, as well, to ensure you always have a clean mask available. Masks should be cloth and must not feature a vent. Neck gaiters and bandanas are not considered acceptable mask options.

Wearing a mask reduces the chance of unknowingly spreading COVID-19 to someone else. A mask is not considered personal protective equipment (PPE) and does not protect the wearer from the COVID-19 virus. A mask is just one protective measure and is not a substitute for physical distancing, regular 20-second hand washing and hand sanitizing, and additional cleaning protocols.

You should keep your face masks laundered and clean.

Can I wear a face shield instead of a face mask?

No; the CDC does not recommend face shields as a substitute for face masks because they don’t protect others from the respiratory droplets of the wearer as well as masks do. A face shield can be worn in addition to a face mask, as added protection for your eyes.

Testing & Contact Tracing

Is the college using an app to track students’ movement for faster contact tracing?

We recommend that students, faculty, and staff install the COVIDaware MN app on their phones to help create a safer community at Carleton. If you choose to install this tool, the app will notify you if you have been near someone who tested positive for COVID-19. Likewise, if you test positive, the app anonymously notifies anyone you’ve been within six feet of for 15 minutes or more during your infectious period. 

With case rates of COVID-19 higher now in Northfield, Rice County, and Minnesota than they were at the start of fall term, widespread use of the COVIDAware MN app would provide an extra layer of information about potential exposure for those traveling back to campus or who travel off campus during the term. It may also prove helpful for contact tracing in situations where one’s ability to judge distances or recall how long a specific interaction lasted is not particularly accurate.  

COVIDaware does not collect any personal information or track your location. The app was made available by the State of Minnesota, in partnership with PathCheck Foundation. It uses your phone’s Bluetooth signal to exchange anonymous tokens through exposure notification technology developed by Apple and Google. You can learn more about COVIDaware MN online, and download it from the Google Play or Apple App Store.   

What is Carleton’s surveillance testing plan for Winter Term?

We have doubled our surveillance testing regimen to test 600 individuals per week. This represents nearly 30% of our expected on-campus population of students, faculty, and staff. The tests are administered by Homeland Health and analyzed by a lab at the University of Minnesota, with results available within 24 hours.

If I’ve already had and recovered from COVID-19, do I need to be tested again?

If you have received a positive COVID-19 test since the end of Fall Term, please share that information with the college using this form. Once your test timing and result have been verified, you will be removed from the surveillance testing pool for 90 days.

What other testing strategies will the college employ this winter?

  • All students, faculty and staff will be tested for COVID-19 immediately upon return to campus in January, and all students will be tested again about one week later.
  • We have increased our supply of rapid tests to ensure we can continue to test individuals as soon as they experience COVID-19 symptoms.
  • We also are prepared to conduct targeted testing of individuals or groups who may be at increased risk of exposure, as identified through contact tracing or case clusters.

We saw success with these approaches in the fall and will continue to prioritize practices that enable our contact tracing team to work as swiftly as possible.

I’m concerned I may be a close contact of a positive case. How do I reach the contact tracing team?

If at any time you believe you are a close contact of a positive case of COVID-19 on campus, please call the contact tracing team at (507) 222-5119.

Will I have to pay the cost of my COVID-19 tests?

In most cases, no; the college will supply and pay for COVID-19 tests on campus. However, any student who needs to complete an overnight visit off campus must notify the Dean of Students Office of their travel prior to departure and, upon return, self-monitor and take an on-campus COVID-19 test at their own expense ($150).

Who is defined as a “close contact” for contact tracing?

We use the CDC’s definition of a close contact, which is any individual who has spent 15 cumulative minutes or more over the course of 24 hours within 6 feet of the infected person. All close contacts of an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19 will be contacted and quarantined. For students living in townhouses or interest houses, all residents of the house will be quarantined in the event of one resident’s positive test.

A close contact also may be someone who had direct physical contact with a positive case, shared eating or drinking utensils with a positive case, provided care in the same residence to someone who is sick with COVID-19, or who had direct contact with infected respiratory droplets through sneezing or coughing. Because campus spaces like classrooms and dining halls have been set up with physical distancing in place, we don’t expect full classrooms to require quarantine in the event of an illness.

If at any time you believe you are a close contact of a positive case of COVID-19 on campus, please call the contact tracing team at (507) 222-5119.

Does the college plan to carry out wastewater testing to determine if COVID-19 is present on campus?

There is no plan for wastewater testing at this time. We consulted on this practice with an external expert and learned that it would provide less meaningful data than will be learned through our plan for ongoing, weekly surveillance testing for COVID-19.

With surveillance testing, we can estimate the true prevalence of illness in the overall population. We can also respond to known positive cases immediately. With wastewater testing, we could detect viral RNA that may be associated with residents in a dorm, but would need to follow up with a test or quarantine for every resident in the dorm.

What type of COVID-19 test is being administered on campus?

For return-to-campus and surveillance testing, we are using a PCR test, which is administered via nasal swab by a health care professional. We also have access to rapid tests and saliva tests, which we use to meet other testing needs.

What happens if someone on campus tests positive for COVID-19?

When a member of our campus community tests positive for COVID-19, our team works on behalf of the Minnesota Department of Health to carry out tracing for close contacts both on and off campus. Affected students follow quarantine and isolation protocols within campus residences that have been reserved for this purpose. Students in quarantine or isolation have a designated case manager, receive meals in their residence, take their classes online, and have their health and wellbeing actively monitored by a member of our professional Student Health and Counseling staff. Those living in suites, townhomes and interest houses are considered household contacts and will need to quarantine in the event that a house member tests positive. Affected faculty and staff follow quarantine and isolation protocols at home.

Quarantine & Isolation

Is Carleton adopting the CDC’s revised guidelines on the duration of quarantine?

Yes. Recent changes to CDC and Minnesota Department of Health guidelines will increase our ability to utilize the quarantine space we have by allowing us to test some quarantined students at day 7 and release them if the test is negative, and they do not exhibit symptoms. It is important to know that not all individuals will be eligible for early release; it is dependent on the circumstances of each exposure.

How many quarantine and isolation spaces are available on campus?

We increased our designated quarantine and isolation space to 101 beds for Winter Term, and we have the flexibility to add even more if needed. With 90 designated spaces this fall, our peak usage came in Tenth Week when 58% of spaces were occupied.

How do quarantine and isolation work?

The College has space reserved for roughly 101 students in quarantine and isolation. Students living in these spaces have the support of a designated case manager, receive meals in their residence, continue their coursework online, and have their health and wellbeing actively monitored by a member of our professional Student Health and Counseling staff. We are following CDC recommendations for the length of quarantine and isolation.

How will I continue coursework for my in-person or hybrid class if I’m in quarantine or isolation?

You will not be allowed to leave your quarantine/isolation space and will need to continue your coursework remotely. How you do that will vary depending on your instructor and the class activities and structure. For example, your professor may be able to use in-classroom microphones or cameras to allow you to follow along, you may be able to access recorded lectures for later listening, or you may be able to keep up by doing assigned reading and participating in Moodle discussions. Your first point of contact should be your instructor. If you are unable to keep up with the class, you should work with the Dean of Students Office to consider a medical extension or leave.

What is the difference between physical distancing, quarantine, and isolation?

Physical distancing is the act of limiting your interactions with others. It includes not shaking hands, avoiding crowds, standing 6 feet from others, working remotely when possible, and staying home if you feel sick.

Quarantine is for people who may have been exposed to COVID-19.

Isolation is for people who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 or have been confirmed to have the virus.

If I’ve been sick, when can I stop isolation?

If you have been sick with respiratory symptoms or fever, you should isolate for 10 days after the onset of your illness. You can stop isolating after that 10-day period as long as you have been fever-free for 24 hours (without the use of medication) and your symptoms have improved.

Student Health & Wellbeing

Who should family members contact if they’re concerned about their student’s health or wellbeing?

Class Deans are the best point of contact for family members. However, if an immediate concern is present, family members should call Security at (507) 222-4444. Security is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Where can I find the daily symptom tracker?

Visit to locate the daily symptom tracker. Please follow these instructions to accurately fill out the daily symptom tracker.

How is Student Health and Counseling providing medical care to students during the term?

Student Health and Counseling (SHAC) is prepared to provide medical care to students during the term via multiple means. Remote telehealth meetings are being utilized for the initial assessment of all appointments. For medical services that require an in-person visit, students will be invited to meet with a provider in the clinic. SHAC also assists students in securing off-campus appointments and understanding transportation options, as needed.

For students who are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or who have tested positive and are therefore in isolation on campus, SHAC will check in with them remotely on a daily basis. If a student has symptoms that require medical intervention beyond self-care strategies, SHAC will help students coordinate the higher level of care needed.

Am I permitted to leave campus for medical appointments?

Yes, students continue to be able to travel off campus for medical appointments. We are limiting the number of occupants in campus fleet vehicles based on physical distancing guidelines.

Do I have to monitor and report my symptoms every day?

Yes. All on-campus students, faculty, and staff must self-monitor and self-report their symptoms daily in order to ensure swift action if signs of illness arise. The symptom tracker can be found at

Does Carleton’s health insurance plan cover students while they are off campus?

You can locate an in-network provider or pharmacy via Wellfleet Student. Wellfleet also offers detailed information on its Coronavirus Updates page.

What should I do if I suspect I have coronavirus?

If you are experiencing symptoms of coronavirus, you should record your symptoms in the Symptom Trackerself-isolate and:

Security is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and the Community Concern Form is monitored regularly.

What are the symptoms of coronavirus?

According to the CDC, people with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:

  • Fever (100.4° F or higher) 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

This list does not include all possible symptoms. 

Where can I find more resources about COVID-19?

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Minnesota Department of Health are the most up-to-date sources of information on the coronavirus outbreak.


Are there private spaces on campus where I can study or attend an online class?

Enclosed student study spaces in the Gould Library and Anderson Hall are available on a first-come, first-served basis. As a courtesy to others, please use study spaces for only one class period at a time on Monday-Friday between 7 a.m. and 10:30 p.m.

You must reserve classroom space if you want to use one Monday-Friday between 7 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. You can do so via the College’s Room Reservation portal using these portal instructions. If you are needing a quiet space to Zoom into classes, this could be an option. Classrooms are not available for drop-in use Monday-Friday before 10:30 p.m. 

Eating and drinking is prohibited in enclosed study spaces and classrooms. 

How should I get my books for the first week of the term when I will be learning from home?

Textbooks can be purchased or rented through the Bookstore website.

If you would like to have your books during First Week when you are learning remotely, you should choose to have your books shipped directly to you. At checkout, please choose “Ship to My Address” as your delivery method; all domestic orders over $49 will receive free ground shipping. If you any of your books are on backorder and you are planning to return to campus for Second Week, you will need to contact to have the backordered books changed to store pick-up so they are not shipped when they become available. Please include your order number in this communication.  

Students who are returning to campus and do not need their books for First Week can place an order for in-store pick up.

Has the Winter Term academic calendar changed?

There is no change to the winter term academic calendar. Classes will begin on Monday, January 4, as planned, however, the first two weeks of classes will be held online. During this first week of remote learning, all students should quarantine and, when possible, get tested for COVID-19 as the CDC recommends before traveling back to Northfield. Following students’ return to campus Saturday, January 9, or Sunday, January 10, the second week of classes also will be held online.

How is the college enforcing physical distancing for in-person classes?

Our approach to academic spaces is to promote six-foot physical distancing and minimize transmission through infected surfaces or aerosols. This includes both modifying room layouts by reducing the density of available seats and implementing behavioral changes, such as wearing masks. In-person class meetings are limited to 30 students. In order to support physically distanced traffic flow, we have changed the daily class schedule to provide longer, 20-minute, breaks between class periods.

May I enroll in two different courses scheduled at the same time?

No. If a student were to do this, Carleton would be in violation of federal standards for financial aid and accreditation.

Will I be exempted from certain requirements based on whether I will be taking courses on campus or remotely?

The College’s academic policies and regulations still hold. College graduation requirements will not be waived, and we would also expect major and minor requirements to be met regardless of whether students register for courses remotely or take classes on campus.

The one-time global exceptions to academic policy that were granted in Spring 2020 (e.g., P.E. waiver for 12th-term seniors, mandatory scrunch for all courses, broader coverage of end-of-term extensions, etc.) were not extended to the 2020-21 academic year.

What are faculty doing to enhance their online teaching?

Carleton’s Learning and Teaching Center hosted regular faculty development events throughout the summer, and there was robust participation by faculty. For example, 20 faculty participated in the first iteration of a week-long workshop on designing fall courses for engagement and resilience. A further 22+ faculty attended a boot camp on online teaching with specialized sessions on using video effectively and approaches to discussion in a variety of remote formats. Further programming focused on working with the librarians and library resources, designing A&I seminars, and teaching quantitative skills, to name a few. The academic support professionals are available for consultation, and the College has introduced the Resilient Pedagogy website to organize and disseminate all the information on best practices, tools, available support, and good examples to the campus community. 

In addition to programming on campus, Carleton faculty have had the opportunity to participate in a number of professional development initiatives through consortial groups, including the Liberal Arts Consortium for Online Learning (LACOL) and the Associated Colleges of the Midwest (ACM). These included workshops, discussion boards, book groups, and opportunities to share syllabi, assignments, and best practices. Faculty are also participating in the workshops put on by many of their professional organizations which focus on teaching issues specific to their disciplines.

Are student study groups permitted?

This depends on the students involved and the work that they must do together. We encourage virtual interactions in situations where that approach is effective. Masks are required for in-person work. Students living in townhouses and interest houses have more freedom to work with members of their “family unit.”

Has the class schedule changed?

Yes, course meeting times were adjusted this fall. The passing periods were increased to 20 minutes, and the final period of each schedule type (6a and 5-6c) was moved to the evening, beginning at 7 p.m.

Housing & Dining

Where else can I eat on campus?

In addition to dining halls, residences, and outdoors, you may eat and drink in the Weitz Cafe and Schulze Cafe areas at any time. Sanitizing wipes are available to wipe your table; mask up as soon as you are finished eating.

Eating and drinking is prohibited in classrooms and in the library.

How many students will be on campus this winter?

Nearly 1,500 students plan to live or learn on campus this winter.

Are kitchens available in campus residence halls?

Yes, kitchens continue to be available in residence halls, with some modifications. Depending on the residence, those modifications may include reserved time slots, occupancy limits, and cleaning requirements. 

How have dorm rooms been set up to facilitate physical distancing?

Beds and other furniture in multiple-occupancy residential spaces were arranged to ensure 6 feet of physical distance can be achieved between residents, particularly for sleeping. The layout of these rooms was informed by guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health. Desks and dressers can be moved out of rooms upon request.

May I commute to campus to take classes in person?

Only students living in campus housing (including the designated hotels) and those approved for the Northfield Option are permitted to come to campus for in-person classes. 

Can I opt out of the meal plan?

The meal plan is required unless you have been released through an accommodation or live in a room where a meal plan is not required.  

Are students able to eat together in the dining halls?

Yes, beginning again on Monday, Jan. 18. All campus dining spaces are set up to accommodate physical distancing. For those who wish to take their meals to go, Dining Services is supporting the G2G program on campus—exchange your card for a G2G Container. Replacement cards can be purchased (dining dollars or Schillers) in Sayles Café.

Other safety measures in our dining spaces include physically-distant queues and seating arrangements, plexiglass barriers between dining staff and diners, and strict sanitizing processes for tables, utensils, and shared spaces.

There are colored cards on all tables. One side is green, indicating that the table has been cleaned and sanitized. The other side is red, indicating that the table needs to be cleaned and sanitized. Students are to display the red side of the card while they are seated at the table.

All diners are required to wear their face coverings and wash or sanitize their hands before entering food service lines.

What are the dining options and hours?

Please visit the dining services website for updated dining hours. 

Sayles is currently cashless, accepting meal plans and Schillers. We hope to be able to accept credit cards later in the term.

We encourage the use of Schillers, as it qualifies diners for a 10% discount in Sayles, Weitz and Schulze Café and a 20% discount in the dining halls.

What is the College doing to limit the spread of germs in campus dining spaces?

Campus food handlers are specifically trained in proper safety and hygiene procedures. All Bon Appétit staff members completed special COVID-19 training and follow all federal and state-level regulations. Additionally:

  • All diners are required to wash or sanitize their hands before entering food service.
  • Pre-work temperature checks and a health survey are being done for all dining managers and employees.
  • All dining staff members are wearing masks and gloves during service periods, when in contact with students, and as their jobs safely allow.
  • All meals are available to go.
  • Staff are disinfecting throughout each meal period.
  • Staff are changing service utensils every 20 minutes.
  • Self-service options are available in accordance with guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health.
  • Seating arrangements in the dining hall have been adjusted to support physical-distancing guidelines.
  • All diners are invited to swipe their own card.

How is the college continuing to prioritize sustainability while also encouraging physical distancing by making food available to go?

At the beginning of the term, each student living on campus received a Green2Go exchange card. These cards can be redeemed for a clean and sanitized reusable container, which can be used at Sayles Café, Burton Dining Hall, and East Dining Hall. Learn more about the Green2Go program.

As always, we are using our sustainable purchasing practices, keeping our local farmers in business. We continue to make food in small batches to enable us to reduce waste. 

Can I use my meal plan to dine at St. Olaf?

Not at this time.

Services & Support

What are the academic building hours on campus?

From Jan. 9-17, students may access academic buildings from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. in order to pick up materials that faculty and staff have made available to students in Studio Art, CAMS, Geology, etc. You should not linger in academic spaces during this time.

Beginning Jan. 18, students will have OneCard access to academic buildings from 7 a.m. to midnight. Classrooms should be unlocked during these hours. 

Is the library open?

The library is closed to students through Jan. 17, but materials are available to be checked out. For more library information, please visit the library website.

Can I get support related to Title IX issues while I’m off campus?

Yes. Carleton is committed to supporting all campus community members who have been impacted by sexual misconduct. Any Carleton student can access both on-campus and off-campus resources whether they are currently located on Carleton’s campus or studying remotely. Learn more.

How can I access technology support from off campus?

Information Technology Services has put together a technology support page for students describing how to set your timezone, how to access available software (to download or run remotely on a Carleton lab computer), how to scan and upload paper documents, and information about key resources like Zoom and the Google Suite. ITS also has a client portal from which you can create a problem ticket or ask for real-time help by chat. 

Activities & Athletics

A set of FAQs specific to student-athletes is available on the PEAR website.

Are recreational facilities available for student use?

The Rec Center will reopen on Monday, Jan. 18. View plans and hours on the Rec Center website.

Equipment check-out and remote classes continue to be available. The outdoor track, Arb, and rinks are open.

Will the number of students who can attend a meeting or event be limited?

We will follow Minnesota Department of Health guidelines regarding the number of people permitted to gather for events or meetings.


Will my room and board fees be reduced for Winter Term?

Room and board fees will be prorated to account for the fact that students will be spending one less week on campus, and financial aid awards will be adjusted to reflect students’ reduced cost of attendance.

How will my financial aid be affected if I am living and learning remotely for Winter and/or Spring Term?

If you plan to study remotely during Winter or Spring Term, your Carleton financial aid package may change because of a different cost of attendance. In a case where a student decides to study remotely, room, board, and the CSA Fee for the term are no longer charged. Because of the change in costs to you, your financial need will also change and an adjustment to your award may be necessary. Students who are remote, who are not living at home and are paying rent should notify Student Financial Services so those costs can be factored into any adjustment. To understand how your financial aid may change, contact Student Financial Services for more information.

What if I am in quarantine or isolation and unable to fulfill my student work hours?

Your first step should be to work with your supervisor to determine if you can complete your work remotely or make up your hours later in the term. If these options are not available to you, please contact Student Financial Services

If at some point during the term I decide to take a leave of absence, will my tuition, room and board fees be refunded to me?

Our existing refund schedule as described in the Campus Handbook remains in place.

If I take a leave of absence for the 2020-21 academic year, how will my financial aid be affected now and in the future?

Carleton is committed to meeting the financial need of students for 12 terms or 216 credits, whichever comes first. If you take the 2020-21 academic year off, your aid will be canceled for the current year. You will be considered withdrawn form Carleton and will need to go through the readmission process through the Dean of Students Office.

Since financial aid is awarded on a yearly basis, you will need to apply for aid prior to returning to Carleton. Assuming that your family’s financial situation has stayed about the same, you can expect your aid to be similar to what you have received in the past. The FAFSA and CSS Profile for the 2021-22 academic year will be available Oct. 1, 2020. Instruction about applying for aid can be viewed through Student Financial Services.

If I take a leave of absence for the 2020-21 academic year, will I have to make payments on my loans?

If you have taken out Federal Direct Student Loans, you will be sent information about Loan Exit Counseling, as this is required whenever a student’s enrollment drops below half time. Because you will be considered withdrawn, you will also enter your 6-month grace period and will be required to start making payments on the loan at the end of the grace period.

Once you are readmitted, your loans will go back into in-school status and payments will not be required until you graduate. However, the loans will start repayment within 30-60 days after graduation as you will have already used your grace period. Any new loans taken after your readmission would have the 6-month grace period. Your grace period starts the date you are withdrawn.

If you have any private alternative loans, you will need to contact the lender to find out their process. Any Carleton Loan or Henry Strong Loan will be processed similar to Federal Loans. However, if you have questions about your specific Carleton or Henry Strong loan, please contact Candace Koen in the Business Office.

Is student employment available?

Yes, both in-person and remote work options are available to students.

Will tuition change if Carleton has to move to 100% remote instruction?

We expect that tuition for the academic year will remain unchanged from the previously announced 2020-21 amount regardless of course delivery method.

Will there be a reduction in the cost of tuition?

Tuition for the academic year will remain unchanged from the previously announced 2020-21 amount. As was the case during the recent Spring Term, students who do not live in one of the College’s housing options will not be charged room and board. Our revised budget plan for the fiscal year 2021 incorporates reserves for financial aid, including contingencies for students with more financial need than might have been expected before the pandemic. We remain committed to meeting the full demonstrated financial need of every Carleton student.

I am facing a financial hardship. Can the College help me?

Yes. You may apply for emergency funding through the Dean of Students Office.

Cleaning & Disinfection

How is the college addressing air quality inside campus buildings?

We have continued to study and optimize campus ventilation systems to maximize fresh air intake, install the highest quality filters that the systems will tolerate, and to supplement this with some stand-alone filtration units as well as bipolar ionization, which releases charged atoms that attach to and deactivate virus particles. Every air handler on campus has been cleaned and checked to ensure proper operation of the dampers and motors for air flow, as well as proper fitting of filters. We are also ensuring that campus spaces have access to fresh air either through a window or a central HVAC system. Additional information can be found in the Facilities Operation and Impact document on the Resources and Training page of this website.

What extra measures are being taken to clean campus buildings?

Following CDC and MDH recommendations, Carleton’s enhanced cleaning and disinfection procedures have been developed to prevent community spread of SARS-CoV-2. A detailed document is available on the Resources and Training page of this website.

What changes are being made to campus restrooms in light of COVID-19?

Campus restrooms are disinfected daily by custodial staff, and disinfecting wipes are available for individual use as needed. All restrooms have been evaluated to accommodate physical distancing, and modified occupancies have been posted as applicable. Additional information can be found on the Resources and Training page of this website.

Are drinking fountains still in service?

Most drinking fountains have been taken out of service. Bottle fill stations remain in service if they are unaffected by the shutting off of drinking fountains.

Does the College have cleaning products that students can use?

Yes, all residential buildings have a supply of cleaning supplies for student use.


What factors would cause Carleton to adjust its plans for winter or spring?

The College’s senior leadership team is continuously monitoring the public health metrics of the campus in the context of county, state, and national data. We have identified Threshold Action Levels to help describe potential transmission scenarios and how the College would plan to operate at various stages. These risk levels take into account the important work our campus community is doing to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 through our behaviors defined in our campus covenant.

As we’ve learned since the beginning of the pandemic, the science regarding COVID-19 is continually evolving, and subsequently, we may change or amend specific threshold measures as public health guidance and recommendations are updated, new testing technologies emerge, and we implement learnings from others in higher education. Any changes will only be considered where they result in safer outcomes for the Carleton community.

What does Carleton need in order to fully reopen its campus?

We are taking guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health and our public health contacts, as well as evaluating the current situation on campus in order to make determinations about future operations.

How is Carleton working with the broader Northfield community in formulating its plans?

We have engaged with the City of Northfield and St. Olaf College throughout the planning process. We are also in regular communication with the Northfield Hospital.