Gustavus Announces Fall Semester Calendar Change Posted on July 1st, 2020 by

Gustavus Adolphus College will provide in-person, on-campus learning this fall, begin the academic year one week earlier than originally planned, and transition to online course delivery following Thanksgiving break, President Rebecca Bergman announced today. The modifications to the academic calendar allow the College flexibility to respond to public health recommendations or pivot to online learning earlier if necessary.

“We are committed to delivering our signature high-quality living and learning experience that prepares students for lives of leadership and service in society,” President Rebecca Bergman said. “We will continue to prioritize the health and wellbeing of all members of our community and adjust our plans as necessary in consultation with the Minnesota Department of Health.”


The College will begin fall classes on Wednesday, September 2, with a staggered residence hall move-in beginning August 15. Classes will take place on Labor Day, Monday, September 7. Fall Break will now run October 17-19. Following Thanksgiving recess, the College will transition to online course delivery for the last seven days of classes and the final exam period. Final exams will conclude on December 14. 

The majority of fall classes will be offered in an on-campus, in-person format. Courses are being spread out across a longer period of the day and some courses will be offered in a blended/hybrid mode or online. Faculty members are working to accommodate social distancing in learning spaces and designing course content to allow for a transition to online learning if necessary.

The Office of Residential Life will be in contact with students about the staggered move-in schedule. First-Year Orientation will take place August 30-September 1. 

At this time, on-campus courses during the January Interim Experience are expected to take place as scheduled beginning January 4. 


The College’s 12 COVID-19 Response Action Teams submitted recommendations on June 26 that are currently being reviewed by the COVID-19 Response Leadership Team and President’s Cabinet. The initial recommendations were developed using emerging best practices for institutions of higher education and guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The reopening plan will be available to all students and employees in mid-July. These plans will be modified moving forward based on updated public health recommendations.

This fall, Gustavus students, faculty, and staff are asked to:

  • Maintain a distance of at least six feet from others in all public indoor and outdoor spaces;
  • Wear a mask or facial covering any time they are within six feet of another person, indoors or outdoors, except for residence hall rooms;
  • Complete a daily self-assessment for COVID-19 symptoms;
  • Practice regular and thorough handwashing.


  • Fine Arts: Faculty and staff are exploring options that will allow the Gustavus community to safely continue with music, dance, theatre, and visual arts activities.
  • Athletics & Wellness: Coaches, faculty, and staff are developing plans for how to safely hold practices and how Lund Center can be utilized for wellness activities by students. The College is waiting for additional guidance from the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) and NCAA Division III regarding fall sports competition.
  • Residence Hall Move-In: A staggered residence hall move-in will run August 15-28. During this time, students may schedule a time to drop off the majority of their belongings in their residence hall room, depart campus, and return in advance of the beginning of the academic year.
  • First-Year Orientation: The Gustavus Class of 2024 will take part in first-year orientation August 30-September 1.
  • Dining Service: In addition to the Evelyn Young Dining Room, seating will be expanded into the Jackson Campus Center banquet rooms to allow for social distancing and help manage peak-use times in the Market Place.
  • Testing & Contact Tracing: Plans are being developed to test students, faculty, and staff who present with symptoms or who meet other testing criteria determined by the College or the Minnesota Department of Health. In the event of a confirmed case on campus, the College will initiate contact tracing, quarantine/isolate affected individuals, and provide case management services for members of the community who are infected or require quarantine due to confirmed exposure.  


Staggered Residence Hall Move-In: August 15-28 (Students may schedule a time to drop off their belongings, depart campus, and return to campus before the academic year begins; some students may move in earlier depending on athletic team, fine arts, or student leadership group schedules. More information will be communicated by the Office of Residential Life.)
First-Year Move-In (for students who cannot take part in staggered move-in): August 29
First-Year Orientation: August 30-September 1
Returning Student Move-In (for students who cannot take part in staggered move-in): August 29-September 1
First Day of Class: September 2
Labor Day: September 7 (classes will be held)
Nobel Conference: October 6-7 (offered virtually)
Fall Break: October 17-19
Mid-term Grades Due: October 21
Last Day of In-Person Classes: November 24
Thanksgiving Recess: November 25-29
Online Classes Begin: November 30
Last Day of Class: December 8
Reading Day: December 9
Final Exams: December 10, 11, and 14
Winter Break: December 15-January 3
January Interim Experience Begins: January 4, 2021


Comments are closed.