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What to expect on campus this fall

As the 2020-2021 school year approaches, Queen’s University continues to deliver updates on various operations for the fall semester.

Campus presence

Queen’s University sees more than 24,000 students on campus each year. Given the unique circumstances surrounding COVID-19, however, the University expects only 6,600 students to regularly be on campus in the fall semester.

This number encompasses approximately 4,400 students who will attend in-person labs and lectures at reduced capacity and 2,300 students who will be housed by Queen’s residences, 100 of whom are counted for both.


Ten of Queen’s seventeen residence buildings will operate in the fall semester at 50% of its regular capacity, each following stringent cleaning and disinfecting protocols.

According to the University, “students in programs with on-campus classes, those admitted under specialized pathways, and students with learning needs or personal circumstances that [require their campus presence]” were offered residence with priority.

Students are encouraged to abide by the University’s proposed “household model” and stay within their “floor-based communities” of fellow students in the same faculty or program, which will reduce contact and control potential spread of COVID-19 in residence.

Residence Life will be using apps such as Raftr to communicate with residents.

Traditionally, residents will meet with a Residence Facilitator or Assistant Residence Life Coordinator when they have been documented for violating Residence Community Standards. This year, many of the staff will be working remotely, conducting conduct meetings over zoom and Microsoft Teams.

Residence rooms will be single occupancy.

Library access

All campus libraries closed on March 18.

On August 5, a small group of students, “identified by faculty deans to take part in a pilot study,” were able to access study space in Stauffer Library to help the University assess next steps in reopening its libraries.

To supplement online resources, the University is offering a curbside pickup service for print materials.

The Queen’s Library promotes its curb-side pickup program


All three dining halls, Ban Righ Hall, Jean-Royce Hall, and Leonard Hall, will operate at reduced capacity. According to Hospitality Services, premade food will replace self-serve items and “[t]ake-out at all dining halls will be encouraged wherever possible.”

Food delivery services will be made available to students in self-isolation in residence.

Select retail locations will be open across campus with reduced capacity and social distancing procedures as well.

Student clubs

Student clubs will deliver events and services remotely until further notice.

In light of these unfavourable circumstances, however, there have been new initiatives to support student leadership and supplement student involvement.

In July, University’s Alma Mater Society (AMS) Clubs Office and the Student Experience Office (SEO) launched a page called The Club Hub to support and promote student clubs. The page features training and funding opportunities, information sessions, and a virtual toolkit of “pre-developed, ready-to-use materials” for club leaders.

On August 10, CFRC 101.9FM, the Queen’s campus radio station, published the first episode of a new podcast called Frosh FM, intended to provide student clubs with exposure and outreach opportunities.

Face coverings

Starting July 24, the University mandated face coverings for all individuals in indoor public and common spaces on Queen’s campus. Exempt from this mandate are those with medical conditions that prevent them from doing so, as per KFL&A Public Health’s Section 22 Order.

To support the successful implementation of this measure, the University is providing “[employees] authorized to be on campus” and “students who are required to be on campus” with cloth face masks.


Queen’s Homecoming, which traditionally boasts decades of returning alumni, spirited football games, and masses of students wearing tricolour, will be celebrated virtually this October.

The winter semester faces many uncertainties at this time. The University will continue to monitor the circumstances surrounding COVID-19 and provide updates.

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