Ripon College Plans Fall Semester with In-Person Classes and Return to Campus

Ripon College intends to welcome students back on campus for the fall semester in August with in-person classes and a resumption of residence life. College administrators, faculty and staff are spending the summer readying the campus for the new reality of the public health situation.

“We want our students and community to return to our beautiful campus in a safe and healthy environment,” said Zach Messitte, Ripon’s 13th president. “We plan to open in August, but we also will follow best practices in order to minimize health risks for our students and employees. This will require us to be flexible and thoughtful should the situation suddenly change.”

The traditional academic calendar may still be adjusted slightly by eliminating the October fall break and ending the semester on or near the Thanksgiving holiday.

“We are watching what similar schools are doing around the state and the country,” Messitte said. “If changing the calendar will help minimize the health risks to our community, we are going to look carefully at it.” A more formal announcement with further details about the fall semester will be made in early July.

The plans for the August reopening of campus are actively being developed by a task force of employees from across the campus and co-chaired by Vice President and Dean of Students Christophor Ogle and Vice President for Finance Andrea Young. The group is preparing a safe return to campus operations in keeping with best public health practices and guidance from federal and state governments. The group is addressing topics that include: academic policies, social distancing practices, protocols for residence halls, face-covering requirements, dining plans and strict attention to disinfection and clean environments. All students and employees will be given a cloth mask with the Ripon logo when they return to campus in August.

“Our commitment to the small college residential experience runs deep,” Messitte said. “We will continue to provide our students a high quality, liberal arts education this fall, just as we have for the past 169 years.”

Further announcements will follow as plans are confirmed. To keep current, visit Ripon’s COVID-19 update site.


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