Frequently Asked Questions

March 3 ReopeningFebruary Town HallAcademicsAthleticsCampus Life (On Campus and Off)Campus ServicesCommutersCourse ModalitiesCOVID-19 HotlineFinancesHealth GuidelinesMasksPublic Events/Public AccessQuarantine, Isolation, and LockdownResidential Life and DiningTesting/Contract TracingVaccination Guidance

What is the current COVID-19 status at PSU?

We continue to see a decline in the number of positive COVID cases from our high during the week of February 14, 2021. This decline is allowing us to resume in-person classes on Wednesday, March 3. Our testing results are posted daily on the website.

What restrictions were put in place as of February 17?
Has the spread really slowed? Active Cases at PSU still seem very high.

Our listing of Active Cases as of February 25 still includes results from tests that took place before we went remote on February 17, for a total of 232 cases. The most recent full series of tests Sunday February 21 through Wednesday February 24 shows that the case count has gone down considerably to 43 positives. Our rate has decreased from 5.2 percent to 2.1 percent. 43 positives is higher than we had in the fall but close to the 35–39 range that we had before the spike on campus. (Note that the 35–39 number of positives was from a larger test group that included some students who have since gone off campus.)   

When are in-person classes resuming?

In-person classes resume on Wednesday, March 3. Originally, we planned to resume in-person activities on March 1, but the March 3 date reflects our desire to assure everyone’s safety and the advice of outside experts.

Are any in-person classes happening before Wednesday, March 3?

Some previously approved experiential classes may continue to meet in person with required PPE and appropriate physical distancing; additional classes may be added by consultation with the provost. Students will hear directly from their instructors if they need to meet in person early next week prior to March 3.

What about Athletics?

Athletics will be handled on a case-by-case basis and students will hear from their coaches.

When is the Center for Families and Young Children opening?

We plan on opening the Child Care Center on Monday, March 1.

If a student who lives in a residential hall went home this week, do they need to be tested?

Residential students who left Plymouth during this remote period will need a COVID-19 test. PSU is providing testing on both Friday, February 26, and Saturday, February 27, in the HUB.  

Testing DateTesting TimeImportant InformationLocationPurpose
Friday (2/26/21)11 am to 7 pmClosed from 1 pm to 2 pm (Lunch Break)HUB CourtroomReturn to campus testing
Saturday (2/27/21)8 am to 2 pmOpen during entire time blockHUB CourtroomReturn to campus testing

We are requiring sign-ups for Friday’s and Saturday’s testing.  Please use the following link: Sign Up for Testing Here.

Please DO NOT come to the HUB Courtroom if you are experiencing symptoms.

Important Information:

  • After taking your arrival test, you can expect to receive those results in approximately 24–36 hours.  
  • Residential students may return home to await these test results and return when their negative result is received. 
  • However, if you decide to stay on campus to await your results you must follow these guidelines:
    • Until you receive a negative arrival test result, you must “shelter in place.” 
    • Interpersonal interactions must be virtual. You should not participate in any in-person gatherings or social interactions.
    • You must remain in your residences, primarily in your own rooms, leaving only to pick up food or for medical appointments.
    • You are required to wear a mask until you receive a negative test result.

When will other restrictions (take out dining, group size, student activities) be relaxed?

Most other restrictions will stay in place until March 5–8. We will continue to closely monitor the data. If these encouraging trends continue, we will further reduce the restrictions and plan to get back to our more normal “COVID Operations” by Monday, March 8.

Why is PSU discontinuing wristbands right now?

Wristbands will be used to identify students who have tested in our weekly testing program when in-person classes resume on Monday, March 1, 2021.

Where do I get my wristband after I come out of isolation?

Students should go to the Hartman Union Building (HUB) and report past positivity status to a staff member in order to receive their weekly wristband. Past positive students are exempt from weekly testing for 90-days post isolation period.

Is the University considering closing? What number would of positives would make the University consider it?

PSU will curtail operations in volume and stages depending on the positivity rate in New Hampshire and, more locally, in Grafton County and on PSU’s campus. To view the specific trigger points, visit this page.

Are students who have jobs off campus allowed to go to those jobs?

Yes. Students who are working off campus should follow guidance from their employers regarding safeguards needed to continue working.

Can students switch to remote if they are not comfortable going back to class?

Yes, although not all classes offer a remote option, students should check with their instructor to determine if remaining remote for the semester is a possibility.

Were positive students being allowed to stay in the residential halls with non-positive roommates?

As of last night, Thursday, February 18, all positive students from our testing Monday through Wednesday are in on- or off-campus isolation facilities. With the dramatic rise in COVID-19 cases beginning on Tuesday evening, Plymouth State’s isolation facilities were quickly at capacity. We worked quickly to identify and prepare additional space both on and off campus to serve as isolation facilities. In consultation with the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services and utilizing guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), positive students who could not return to their homes were given instructions on how to safely self-isolate in their on-campus rooms until they could be moved to our isolation facilities. More info here: Self-isolation has been used across the country since the start of the pandemic as families have often had COVID-19-positive family members isolating with COVID-19-negative family members in the same residence. We provided take-out meals for these students and gave them guidance on personal hygiene, strict mask wearing, social distancing, and how to reach Student Health Services should they need additional support. In most cases, students were relocated between 12-24 hours from the time we were notified of the positive test result.   We now have additional isolation beds available off and on campus should they be needed.

Is there a new variant of COVID-19 on campus?

We are working now with the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services to sequence a random sample of our positive test results in its lab to determine if there are any variants. This process should be underway in the coming week.

Does the PSU mailroom have new hours? How can I get my mail/packages?

The mailroom is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.–2 p.m.

What steps are being taken to ensure there isn’t a repeat when students return on March 1?

We are currently formulating a testing plan for returning students. We will share more information in the coming days.

If students go home, do they need to get tested before returning to campus?

We are finalizing a testing protocol for students who leave Plymouth during this remote period to bring them safely back to campus. Please check your PSU e-mail for details as they become available.

What steps are being taken by campus and town officials when students are gathering, like the reported 40+ party last week?

PSU officials, in coordination with University Police, are preemptively stopping large gatherings among the student body. The UPD responds to anonymous tips about gatherings and confronts hosts about the dangers of parties. Those who do host large gatherings are disciplined academically depending on the severity of the infraction.

Where do you find COVID test results? Is Quest lab still the developing the results?

This semester, PSU switched from Quest Diagnostics to the Broad Institute. The turnaround time for results has been much quicker, with results usually arriving in less than 24–48 hours.

When will the vaccine be available for students?

Considering the current trajectory of vaccinations in the country and the state, it is unlikely that college-age individuals will be able to receive a vaccination before the end of the spring semester. Students will likely need to get vaccinated on their own in the summer. If this schedule changes, you will be notified.

Are positive students allowed to go to Prospect Dining Hall with other students?

No. Students who test positive must immediately isolate themselves.

Will you consider testing twice a week?

Twice weekly testing of all students will begin in early March.

Will residential halls and apartments be disinfected?

We are working with our Building Service Team and outside resources to provide the needed cleaning for residential spaces.

Should students go home?

It is recommended that students who need to isolate or quarantine go home rather than stay on campus if at all possible, since space at and around PSU has nearly run out.

How long do close contacts quarantine for?

Two weeks.

Is the library open?

The library building is closed but librarians are available remotely. On the Lamson Library website at, on the right side of the page, under “Ask a Librarian,” there are multiple ways to contact them.

The Technology Help Desk will continue to operate its normal hours, albeit, remotely from Lamson.  The best way to reach out to the Help Desk for support is via phone (603-535-2929) or by sending an email to    

The current Help Desk hours are as follows: 

Monday – Thursday: 7:30 am – 10 PM 
Friday: 7:30 – 5 PM 
Saturday: 10 AM – 8 PM 
Sunday: 10 AM – 10 PM 

Additionally, the Helpdesk team has scheduled some drop-in tech support hours via Zoom.  These sessions will offer 1st level technical support for students, staff, and faculty and are intended to replace the walk-up support the team usually provides at the Lamson Information desk.

Monday – Thursday:  11 AM – 5 PM 
Friday:  10 AM – 4 PM

How long after exposure does it take for COVID to show up on a test?

The coronavirus’s incubation period can last up to 14 days. An individual could test positive for the virus after only a few days of exposure.

How do students who tested positive or are in quarantine get food?

Residential Life and Dining Services will be in touch with students who test positive and provide details on getting food.

Should students wear masks in their rooms with roommates?

Yes, if proper distancing can’t be maintained.

What type of medical care and monitoring are you providing for the students who are positive and isolated at the hotels?

We know that testing positive for COVID-19 and moving into isolation can be both physically and mentally challenging. Plymouth State University has contracted with Summit Health Associates to work with all students in our isolation facilities over the coming days to manage their physical and mental well-being during this time. There is no charge to you for this service and students are not required to have health insurance.  You can learn more about Summit Health at

Can parents come to help students move off campus?

Yes, however, they cannot enter the residence halls.

Should students start double masking?

Data suggest double masking dramatically decreases particle spread. Double masking is recommended, however, it is not required.

If a student is positive and is sent to quarantine in a hotel what happens afterward? Do students return back on campus?

Yes, after they have tested negative and isolated for two weeks.

Can students switch to remote if they are not comfortable going back to class?


Can it be made mandatory that the testing staff does the swabbing instead of the students?

We are working with our testing partner to begin this process.

Will there be a Commencement?

Specific plans regarding Commencement are still being discussed.

Are you going to implement optional Pass/Fail for students who are less successful in online courses?

There are no plans at this time for implement this option. Students are encouraged to work with their instructors and advisors closely to find additional ways to successfully complete their academic work during this time. 

What if a student is in isolation and can’t get to their labs due to illness?

Students should contact their professors to work out arrangements for lab participation.

How is the school handling on-campus internships?

Students with internships should stay in touch with their supervisor to continue their work remotely during this remote period.

Are there any plans to reimburse students for the year?

Because classes are continuing remotely throughout this outbreak and plans are to return to in-person learning there are no plans for tuition refunds at this time.

Will students who choose to go home be refunded?

If students make the decision to leave their campus residence for the remainder of the semester before March 1, 2021 and not return, refunds will be issued at 50% of the Room and Board rate, which is in alignment with the current refund policy for full semester course withdrawals.

Will there be a spring break?

No, not this semester.

Is the PSU Bookstore open?

We have created “window service” at the bookstore entrance. Customers MUST place an online order through the PSU Bookstore online store ( and then they can pick up their order during the same hours that the mailroom is open (Mon.-Fri., 9 a.m.–2 p.m.). The window service is setup exactly like the mailroom’s pick-up window, with a plastic guard between employees and customers. Customers will not be allowed inside the bookstore.

Will athletics resume for the spring semester?

The future of athletics this semester depends on the positivity rate on the PSU campus. More information will be provided as it arrives.

How are restrictions being enforced on campus?

PSU restrictions are upheld both by the University Police and staff as well as by an honor system among the community. PSU faculty, staff, and students have been instructed not to hold doors open for anyone—everyone must use their own badge to enter buildings—and remind those not practicing distancing and masking measures to follow proper protocols. Those who refuse to adhere to these restrictions will be escorted off campus by UPD.

Will mask wearing start being enforced on campus?

Mask wearing has been enforced on campus since last year and will continue until further notice.

Where can I eat?

Prospect Dining Hall remains open on the regular semester schedule for take-out service only, and the “to go” window is open from 11 a.m.–7 p.m.

What’s been done to improve the online experience?

Plymouth State University faculty have been working non-stop since spring 2020 to develop and expand their remote teaching approaches to best support our students.

  • Since May 2020, at least 179 unique individuals (43.9 percent of faculty, teaching lecturers, and staff who currently teach) have undergone online Professional Development training in online teaching and pedagogy.
  • PSU’s Open Teaching and Learning Collaborative (CoLab) taught 14 workshops with 861 distinct registrations during its May 2020 “Slipper Camp” on online teaching and learning. 38.2 percent of PSU faculty participated. The CoLab continues to offer professional development workshops for faculty and staff throughout the year on the effective use of Zoom breakout groups, engaging students in multiple modalities, as well as on Advising, DegreeWorks, Race and Intersectionality, Teaching while Disabled, Teaching with Equity and Inclusion, etc.
  • Over the summer, the CoLab designed and ran a four week workshop around the ACE Framework focusing on Adaptability, Connection, and Equity. ACE elevates three characteristics that are clear, context-sensitive, values-driven, and mission-aligned; we can use them to plan assignment-, course-, and institution-level responses to crises (such as COVID-19) in the areas of our University that are connected to teaching and learning. The initial summer launch included 17 workshops with over 950 distinct registrations, including 43.9 percent of PSU faculty.
  • Online Course Certification: Dozens of Plymouth State faculty also participated in a two week online summer course from national experts at Quality Matters on best practices in “Designing Your Online Course,” while 35 others began the online course certification process with Quality Matters.
  • We continue to improve the quality of internet, WiFi, Zoom, and Moodle access throughout the semester.

Will I know the format of my courses ahead of time?

Yes. Plymouth State will have updated course modalities online by the end of November 2020. Students will be able to see whether a course is offered solely in person/on campus, online (synchronous or asynchronous), and/or in hybrid format. If the course is listed as Hybrid, students should contact the professor directly to see whether in person, on campus participation is required or whether they can elect to take the course fully remotely.

How will Plymouth State ensure physical distancing in classrooms and labs?

Classrooms and labs are structured to ensure physical distancing and classes will be offered remotely and in person to provide hybrid delivery for learning. Students who are sick or are in quarantine can still keep up on their classes, remotely.

Can all of my classes be online?

Possibly. Students can design a fully online spring schedule; however, not all classes will be offered online. Some disciplines and courses require in person attendance for experiential learning, accreditation requirements, internship, and/or practica experiences. Students should communicate with their advisors and faculty to see what impacts a fully remote semester may have on their time toward graduation.

Will PSU still offer the Math Activity Center, the Writing Center, and other centers?

Yes. Depending on the center, either safe in-person tutoring (with social distancing and masks) or virtual services will be offered.

How will classrooms be kept clean?

Sanitizing wipes will be provided in every class for students to wipe down desks/chairs, etc. before and after class. Hand sanitizer will be available, and students and faculty are encouraged to use the sanitizer or wash their hands before and after every class. Classrooms will be cleaned daily.

What will happen if a professor tests positive?

If a professor tests positive, either another faculty member would pick up the course or it would move online—either way, the class continues.

What about internships and students in programs that require certification?

Participation and safety measures for internships, clinical experiences, and other practica required by accreditation bodies are often set by the accrediting body or host institution. Student teaching internships, for example, may need to follow the host school’s COVID testing protocols or they may be remote, depending on the individual school’s situation. Similarly, clinical placements for Nursing or other areas may include additional safety protocols, testing, and PPE as required by the host institutions. Professional internships may still be available in person, but students should also ask about remote/virtual internship options. Students should contact their academic advisor for program-specific guidelines.

What has changed on the Spring 2021 Academic Calendar? When will classes start and end, and what about finals and Commencement?

Spring semester classes will begin on Monday, January 25, 2021, a week later than had been originally planned. The Spring 2021 semester will not include a Spring Break, but will include three separate ‘mental health’ days when there are no classes: February 10, March 9, and April 14. This will help greatly with safeguarding the health of our community. Finals will begin and end as planned on Monday, May 3, through Friday, May 7. At this time, we are cautiously optimistic that Graduate Commencement for the Classes of 2020 and 2021 will take place on Thursday, May 6. Undergraduate Commencement for the Class of 2021 will take place on Saturday, May 8, and the Class of 2020 will hold its Commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 9, 2021. You can access the 2020/2021 Academic Calendar here.

Who should I contact if I need help with my spring schedule?

Students should contact their success coach or academic advisor for assistance with their spring schedules. They can be reached via e-mail at, or 603-535-3065.

When will winter sports student athletes return to campus?

Winter sports student athletes will return to campus no earlier than January 13, 2021. A definitive date has not been set.

Will winter sports have games?

Our winter sports teams are parts of multiple leagues that are making independent decisions which are subject to change. The following information is current as of Jan. 19th

  • Men’s/Women’s Basketball (Little East Conference) – the LEC has a reduced, conference-only schedule. Conference games are slated to begin Jan. 23. All scheduled contests are available online.
  • Men’s/Women’s Swimming (Little East Conference) – the LEC will not hold its traditional conference championship meet. Instead, the conference has organized a dual meet schedule starting Feb. 6 and going into early March. All scheduled contests are available online.
  • Men’s/Women’s Indoor Track & Field (Little East Conference) – the LEC has pushed its conference championship meet back to Mar. 6, but a format has not yet been determined. It is possible the event will be held at multiple locations. If the NCAA cancels its Indoor Championships, the LEC will also cancel the conference championships. Discussions have been held about the possibility of dual or tri-meets among conference members. Only Plymouth State, Rhode Island College and Southern Maine have sufficient facilities to host such events.
  • Men’s Hockey (Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference) – the MASCAC canceled its winter sports season, including all conference play and championship tournaments. Because of this, Plymouth State has partnered with a group of schools able to maintain similar (and necessary) testing regimens and has scheduled games beginning Feb. 12. All scheduled contests are available online.
  • Women’s Hockey (New England Hockey Conference) – the NEHC canceled its conference regular season and championship tournament. Because of this, Plymouth State has partnered with a group of schools able to maintain similar (and necessary) testing regimens and has scheduled games beginning Feb. 12. All scheduled contests are available online.
  • Men’s/Women’s Skiing (Eastern Intercollegiate Ski Association) – the EISA has put together a modified carnival schedule. While a number of member schools (primarily from the NESCAC and Ivy League) have dropped out, competition will continue. In this new format, men and women will race on different days and, in most cases, each day of competition will hold two separate races. All scheduled contests are available online.
  • Wrestling (New England Wrestling Association) – it is unlikely Plymouth State will compete in any dual meets or tournaments this winter.

What are the testing procedures in place for athletes?

All Plymouth State students must have a negative COVID-19 test 7–10 days prior to returning to campus. Additional information regarding pre-arrival testing will come from the University in the coming months.

Additionally, the NCAA has split sports into transmission risk categories, which determine additional testing requirements as detailed below.

  • High Transmission Risk Sports (Basketball, Football, Ice Hockey, Men’s Lacrosse, Volleyball, Wrestling)
    • PCR testing three times per week (and within 72 hours prior to competition) for all individuals that constitute the “inner bubble,” including student-athletes and essential personnel whose job function requires direct access to players on a regular basis, specifically close contact (6-feet or less) for 15 minutes or more.
  • Intermediate Transmission Risk Sports (Baseball, Field Hockey, Indoor Track & Field, Soccer, Softball, Women’s Lacrosse, Volleyball – if universally masked)
    • PCR testing weekly for all student-athletes and coaches, plus additional testing for symptomatic and high infection risk individuals as warranted.
  • Low Transmission Risk Sports (Cross Country, Golf, Outdoor Track & Field, Skiing, Swimming, Tennis)
    • PCR testing weekly for all student-athletes and coaches, plus additional testing for symptomatic and high infection risk individuals as warranted.

What is the cost of the COVID testing?

There will be no cost to students for any COVID testing.

Will I be charged a season of eligibility if I play this year?

No. The NCAA has granted a blanket waiver for all student-athletes regardless of their year of eligibility (FR, SO, JR, SR). Student-athletes will not use a year of eligibility, nor will the semesters attended count toward the 10-semester maximum, provided the student-athlete was eligible to compete in 2020-21.

Will fans/spectators be allowed at games?

Out of an abundance of caution fans will not be allowed at any contests until further notice.

Will there be any way to watch Plymouth State sports?

Home games will be broadcast online with the links available on the athletics website (

What is happening with spring sports?

We continue to plan for a traditional season for spring sports teams. The adjusted academic calendar (later start, no spring break) means spring teams will not have their traditional spring trips.

How will athletic training services be handled?

AT services will be handled the same as they were in the fall.

  • Services will be offered at all three clinics (PE Center, ALLWell North, Ice Arena) by appointment only (10am – 2pm). Appointments can be made prior to the start of team practices by contacting your sport’s athletic trainer.
  • Prior to entering any AT clinic an athlete’s temperature will be checked and they must verify they are symptom free using a COVID symptom checklist. Anyone displaying a fever or symptoms must return to their residence and make an appointment with PSU Health Services for further evaluation and possible testing.
  • Taping will occur at each team’s practice site when possible.
  • There will be no social gathering or use of hot packs at AT clinics prior to practice.
  • AT personnel will make and distribute all ice bags.
  • Athletes must provide their own water bottles. AT will provide water stations with hand sanitizer. Athletes must use the hand sanitizer before and after filling their own water bottles.

What will team travel look like?

  • All athletes and staff must wear face coverings while on the bus.
  • Prior to boarding the bus, each individual will have their temperature checked and must verify they are symptom free using a COVID symptom checklist. Anyone displaying a fever or symptoms will not travel.
  • Teams will not stop for meals while on the road. All meals will be packed with the team or delivered to the game site.

Are the pool, ice arena and track available for open swim, skating, or walking?

All facilities are closed to the public indefinitely. PSU students, faculty, and staff will be allowed access to the pool. Hours will be available on the facilities page of the athletics website.

What happens if an athlete or coach test positive for COVID?

Plymouth State’s COVID Rapid Response Team (RRT) will reach out to anyone who tests positive through PSU’s testing procedure. If someone tests positive using an outside testing agency (UrgentCare, Speare Hospital, etc.) they should email proof of their positive test to the RRT at

The RRT will interview the positive case to determine close contacts and will help arrange isolation/quarantine for all parties consistent with current Plymouth State and New Hampshire Health and Human Services protocols.

Following completion of their isolation, any student-athlete who has tested positive will also need to be cleared by the team physician prior to returning to practice/competition.

There was previous discussion about fall sports playing in the spring. Is that still happening?

There are plans in place for fall sports to play a limited number of contests in the spring semester:

  • Men’s/Women’s Soccer, Volleyball – the LEC has built a reduced, conference-only schedule. The plan calls for participating schools to compete from mid-March to mid-April.
  • Field Hockey – the LEC has built a reduced, conference-only, divisional schedule. The plan calls for participating schools to compete from mid-March to mid-April.
  • Tennis – last August the LEC announced the entirety of the women’s tennis schedule would be moved to the spring semester. That plan is still in place.
  • Football – the MASCAC has not announced official plans for its fall sports playing in the spring semester.

My question wasn’t answered above. Who can I contact for more help?

Feel free to reach out to any of the following:

Does a “closed campus” mean that I can’t travel?

In order to establish our safe campus, we’re asking students to limit travel, including not returning home, for at least the first few weeks of the semester. If you go outside the greater Plymouth area, we’ll need to find out the details and you may be tested.

How will you enforce wearing of masks, group sizes, etc., off campus?

The PSU Code of Conduct applies to all students, and we are working with local landlords, Plymouth police, and other local authorities to provide the safest possible fall semester. Attending PSU is a privilege and we ask that everyone follow six simple steps.

Can students have off-campus guests?

To promote safety, we will be a “closed campus” with no guest visits or overnights. Residence halls and other buildings will only be open to active faculty, staff, and students, continuing the policy that’s been in place since March.

What about visits from other on-campus students?

We need to treat each residence hall as a closed unit for health and safety purposes, so if you live in Grafton Hall and want to study with a friend in Merrill Place, you can’t visit there but you can both get together in a common area such as the library.

Are student clubs still operating?

Yes! We ask student clubs that meet to carefully adhere to using a mask, practice physical distancing, and to limit the size of gatherings.

Will the PSU Counseling Center be open?

Yes, on a limited basis. The primary means of service will be virtual, but it’ll be available in-person when online service isn’t appropriate, including for emergencies.

Will the shuttles operate?

Yes, though primarily between the Holderness and Plymouth parts of campus. Shuttles will include new safety features and masks will be required.

What is the plan for commuter students?

Commuters will continue to be welcomed to campus, and they will need to follow testing and health guidelines like all others. Those working in their hometowns may continue to do so.

What are the different modes and formats of Spring 2021 courses?

  • Online synchronous: Classes take place remotely during specified days and times.  
  • Online asynchronous: Classes take place remotely but not during specified day/time periods.  
  • Hybrid: Some classes are taught face-to-face and some online (synchronously or asynchronously); students are expected to participate during some of the days/times listed on the schedule. 
  • Face-to-face: Classes are taught on campus without an online component.  

If you need to ask any of the questions below please email the or call the Covid Hotline 603-535-2409, and we will answer your questions or link you to the proper person to assist you. 

  • Think you are a close contact? 
  • I think I have symptoms? 
  • What if I miss my testing time? 
  • Are you vaccinated? 
  • Have you missed testing days? 
  • How do I sign up for the vaccine? 
  • Receive a “Test Not Processed”? 
  • What do I do with a silent witness tip? 
  • I haven’t been tested (fully remote) and now have f2f classes, what do I do? 
  • I plan on heading home for the weekend? 
  • I’m traveling, how do I return to campus? 
  • What bracelet is the correct one for my class to be wearing? 

Will room and board fees be refunded if I decide before classes begin that I want to take all of my classes remotely?


Which health guidelines are being followed?

Plymouth State University is following the directives of the New Hampshire Governor’s Office, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), New Hampshire’s Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), and The World Health Organization (WHO) to guide us in our approach to delivering our curriculum to students and opening our campus.

Do I always have to wear a mask?

Everyone must wear face coverings in classrooms at all times, in public common spaces and in local stores and businesses. We will work individually with those who have special medical issues concerning mask-wearing. Remember, face coverings are worn for the protection of others as well as your own protection. Masks aren’t required if you’re outside and maintain six feet of distance.

What types are required?

Cloth face coverings that cover the nose and mouth are required in classrooms, common areas, meeting spaces, and group workspaces at all PSU facilities. We ask that you bring 3–4 masks to campus when you arrive, and PSU will have extras. 

What will happen if a student refuses to wear a mask?

We hope everyone will do their part by wearing masks, which is one of six simple steps to safeguard out community. Students who refuse to wear a mask won’t attend classes and may lose the privilege of coming to campus altogether.

Will athletics, theatre, recitals, and other events be open to the public?

Spring 2021 events will be open to the PSU community but not the general public. We are working on streaming options to enable families to watch as well.

Will PSU be hosting public events this spring?

The Museum of the White Mountains and the Silver Center for the Arts will be closed to the public in Spring 2021, in part to provide additional classroom space that is needed for social distancing. In general, large campus gatherings will not be scheduled this spring

What about access for contractors and others doing business with the University?

Contractors and visitors on business with PSU who complete a health attestation in coordination with their University contact may enter buildings to conduct their business. Otherwise, visitors and guests outside the COVID-19 testing protocol cannot enter buildings. This is a policy from the fall semester that will continue for the health and safety of our community.

What about Commencement?

Graduate Commencement for both the Class of 2020 and the Class of 2021 will be held on Thursday evening, May 6, followed by the Class of 2021 Undergraduate Commencement on Saturday, May 8, and the Class of 2020 Undergraduate Commencement on Sunday, May 9. Timing for these events and other details will be shared at a later date

How will quarantining be handled?

Students who may have been exposed to known COVID-19 carriers will need to quarantine. Students who test positive for COVID-19 will be isolated for 10 days and not attend in-person classes. Those who live relatively close by may return home, and we have secured off-campus space where PSU will provide meals, transportation, and remote classes. Quarantine testing may be arranged by calling (603) 535-2409.

What is the quarantine guidance for people who have been vaccinated or previously infected?

NH DPHS quarantine guidance for people who are fully vaccinated or previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 has been updated (Quarantine Guide). This guidance applies to the general public, businesses, schools, and healthcare facilities, including long-term care facilities (LTCFs) and assisted living facilities (ALFs).

The following people do NOT need to quarantine after an unprotected exposure to a person with COVID-19, or after travel outside of New England:

  • A person who is 14 days beyond the second dose of their COVID-19 vaccine (i.e., 14 days after full vaccination).
  • A person who is within 90 days of a prior SARS-CoV-2 infection diagnosed by PCR or antigen testing.
  • People with prior infection should be vaccinated to provide the highest level of protection against COVID-19.

Regardless of prior infection or vaccination status, any person with new or unexplained symptoms of COVID-19 still needs to isolate, and be evaluated for COVID-19 testing.

In terms of quarantining, what are “family units” and “lockdown”?

For on-campus students, your family unit is your residence hall room (up to four people). If one roommate tests positive the room will be quarantined as a whole, but the person who tested positive will be isolated separately or at home. If the virus spreads to the residence hall floor, then the whole floor will quarantine. A more severe outbreak may require “locking down” the entire residence hall or even the campus altogether. If you live off campus, if one person becomes ill the whole house or apartment is quarantined and you’ll have to stay off campus and take classes online until everyone tests negative.

What’s it going to be like living on campus?

Community building activities will still take place with appropriate social distancing, and we will be set up to handle students who might get sick. Staff will wear face coverings and students will be required to wear them in common spaces, but they will be optional in individual rooms.

What about move-in?

Move-in will take place in late January. Students will be provided detailed move-in dates, time frames, and other instructions soon. The number of move-in helpers will be limited to two, and while they don’t need to be tested ahead of time they need to wear face coverings and observe social distancing.

Can someone who has been fully vaccinated still pass COVID to others without knowing it?

It is not yet known, but it is possible that people who are fully vaccinated or previously infected could still get asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection, or attenuated (milder) COVID-19. Therefore, even people who are fully vaccinated or previously infected need to continue to practice distancing, avoid social groups and gatherings, and wear face masks at all times when in public places.

Will there still be testing in the Spring 2021 semester?

Yes, there will be weekly COVID-19 testing. We will follow the same weekly testing process used in the fall. More information here.

Will required testing provided by the college continue to be free for students?

Yes, these testing costs will be covered by the University for students who are taking in-person classes or are entering campus buildings to access resources, and for those employees who are working on campus.

What happens if I test positive or I am exposed to someone who has tested positive?

You will receive notification from a member of the PSU COVID-19 Rapid Response Team who will walk you through immediate actions to take and next steps. New Hampshire Health and Human Services will work directly with any person who is identified as either having tested positive or been exposed to someone who tested positive to provide details and recommendations for quarantine and isolation. Individuals testing positive or exposed to someone who has tested positive should avoid shared/common spaces for 14 days and may quarantine at home if it is relatively close. PSU has off-campus isolation space for students who are unable to return home. Faculty and staff are expected to quarantine at home.

What is contact tracing?

Contact tracing helps identify people who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, such as roommates and those who have been within six feet for 10 minutes or more. Read NH’s contact tracing plan.

What happens if a student in one of our in-person classes tests positive? Will we be notified through contact tracing?

PSU staff will assist New Hampshire Health and Human Services in contact tracing. For details of what is involved in tracing, visit the NH DHHS website.

What if I have symptoms but am not sure I have COVID-19?

Self-isolate and call either PSU Health Services at (603) 535-2350, or your Primary Care Provider (PCP) or other health care clinician for guidance.

The following highlights are from an official New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Health Alert, Update #37, dated March 12, 2021, titled “CDC Guidance for Fully Vaccinated Person.” 

Do I still need to participate in campus-wide testing if partially or fully vaccinated?


Should fully vaccinated persons continue to wear masks, practice physical distancing, avoid large crowds and group settings, and avoid non-essential travel?


Is one specific COVID-19 vaccine preferable over another?

No, all are effective at preventing COVID-19, and individuals should be vaccinated with the first available vaccine. 

When is a person considered “fully vaccinated?”

14 or more days after receipt of the second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or 14 or more days after receipt of the single dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. 

Can fully vaccinated persons visit other fully vaccinated persons indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing?

Not in businesses/workplaces such at Plymouth State University. 

Do fully vaccinated persons need to quarantine after an unprotected exposure to COVID-19 or higher risk international travel if the person remains asymptomatic?


What are the guidelines for fully vaccinated persons who participate in international travel?

The traveler must be tested by PCR 1–3 days before travel to the US and again 3–5 days after traveling. Additional CDC travel guidance is available here