Princeton University has decided to have all undergraduate students fully remote for the fall 2020 semester, according to an update sent by Princeton President Christopher L. Eisgruber on Friday.
According to Eisgruber's letter, the decision was made due to the pandemic's impact on New Jersey which "has led us to conclude that we cannot provide a genuinely meaningful on-campus experience for our undergraduate students this fall in a manner that is respectful of public health concerns and consistent with state regulations and guidance."
Some context: Princeton had announced July 6 that it planned to welcome back first-years and juniors for the fall semester, and sophomores and seniors for the spring semester, however, that plan was always subject to change according to the public health situation.
"The health risks to the campus and surrounding populations appear greater now than they did just a month ago," Eisgruber said in the letter. "Reopening efforts in New Jersey and elsewhere have demonstrated how difficult it is to contain the disease. Where schools and universities have started to bring back students, Covid cases have rapidly followed."
According to the announcement, Princeton hopes to bring students back to campus in the spring, and said seniors in the class of 2021 will be its top priority.