The University of Southern California plans to resume in-person classes for the fall semester starting August, USC President Carol Folt said in a letter to students on Tuesday.
Folt said that starting the week of August 10, orientation for incoming students will be conducted online. Small, in-person events will be held if possible.
“While we still have many details to work out, we are planning for an in-person fall semester for students beginning on August 17, 2020, a week earlier than originally scheduled,” she said.
Folt said the plans, however, are "contingent on several factors, including the continued spread of COVID-19, and the health orders from state and local authorities.”
The university is planning to mandate that anyone on campus and in a classroom wear face coverings and practice physical distancing. Every in-person class for undergraduate students will also be offered online, the letter said. Classrooms and offices are being reconfigured to meet physical distancing requirements.
According to the letter, all classes, including final exams, will end by Thanksgiving to minimize the spread of the coronavirus as flu season starts. There will be no fall break.
“Things could change, but we are excited to move forward and to have you back,” Folt said.
USC is one of the biggest schools in Southern California. A total of 48,500 students were enrolled in the 2019-2020 academic year, according the university’s website. Like many schools across the United States, USC moved all its courses online as the coronavirus pandemic spread throughout the country.