General Information

This page was last updated on January 26, 2021, at 11:45 a.m.

Recently added or updated information denoted by NEW

What is de-densification?

In order to comply with the social distancing guidelines from the New York State Guidelines for Institutions of Higher Education, the College must reduce the number of people on campus. This includes all spaces, such as dining halls, classrooms, meeting rooms, residence halls, the library, the sports center, BWCC, administrative offices, campus shuttle vans, and outdoor spaces. De-densification allows for social distancing, an integral part of the College’s disease mitigation strategy.

What is social or physical distancing?

Social distancing is being at least six feet apart from another person and avoiding large groups, crowds, and gatherings. Social distancing AND the use of face masks /coverings, hand washing, and cleaning and disinfecting of frequently touched surfaces are all part of the College’s disease mitigation plan. 

Will all members of the Sarah Lawrence community need to adhere to health and safety protocol and guidelines? 

Yes. Compliance with all disease mitigation and health and wellness strategies is expected of all as part of our shared commitment to our community’s health and wellbeing.

It's important to note that adherance to our shared disease mitigation strategies is expected even of those in our community who have previously been infected with COVID-19 as well as those who have received a COVID-19 vaccine. Information is not year clear on whether these individuals can still transmit COVID-19 to others, therefore mask-wearing, social distancing, and hand-washing remain critical practices for all.

How is SLC reducing density beyond residence halls?

In addition to some students choosing to participate in coursework from home, or commuting to campus from home (or an off campus residence), we have further reduced campus density by staggering staffing, and some faculty are teaching from off campus. Some non student-facing staff members who, in the past, would work in an on-campus office Monday through Friday are presently working remotely in full or in part, creating more space for those whose roles require them to be on campus.

Campus also has building/area/event capacities that are enforced to promote adequate spacing and ensure that gatherings occur in a safe manner.

Will there be in-person events on campus?

Yes. There will be both online/virtual events for students as well as in-person events for those who live on or near campus. All in-person events will require an RSVP so that a contact tracing roster can be generated quickly should the need arise and to ensure the event location's capacity is sufficient to accommodate spacing needs. To begin the spring semester, all events will be online until move-in COVID-19 testing is complete and results are returned to the College. After that, smaller in-person events may begin and larger events (up to 50 people) may be scheduled during Phase III of the College's reopening. For nearly all on-campus events, outdoor space will be used whenever possible.

Communities of Color are being disportionality impacted by COVID-19.  How is the College recognizing and working with this?  

During the current global health crisis, more than 120,000 people have died in the United States. Within this nation, Black, Indigenous, and Latiné people are sickening and dying at disproportionately high rates during the COVID-19 pandemic.  These numbers highlight decades of structural racism that exist within this country.  The college will continue to do the work to change inequities that exist within the institution in partnership with The Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.  The College also has also committed to providing resources for students who face hardship as a result of COVID-19.  These resources can be accessed through the Dean of Studies Office by emailing

What cleaning procedures is SLC implementing?

The College has established enhanced cleaning protocols of public and shared spaces, common areas of residences halls, and faculty and staff offices. Commonly-touched surfaces like doors will be wiped down regularly throughout the day, hand sanitizer stations will be placed throughout campus, and spaces like the Barbara Walters Campus Center food service area will pause service in the middle of the day for cleaning. In addition, classrooms and other commonly-used rooms will have cleaning supplies in them so individuals can wipe down their work space before and after use. Residents will be provided cleaning supplies for use in their dorm rooms, Residence Life staff will build programming about hygiene into regular campus life activities, and signage will be prominently placed throughout campus reminding individuals to social distance, wear a face mask, and practice robust personal hygiene.