Mansfield University announces Health and Safety Plan for Fall 2020 return to campus, early start to semester

MANSFIELD, Pa. – Mansfield University announced its Health and Safety Plan for the Fall 2020 semester that details measures for a return to in-person instruction and on-campus residency.

The Health and Safety Plan for Fall 2020 relies on guidance from health experts from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH), and the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE). The university will continue to adjust the plan to support the needs of the entire campus community as the situation surrounding the pandemic continues to evolve. 

“Protecting the safety and well-being of our entire university community—students, staff, faculty, parents and visitors—is paramount as we plan for Fall instruction,” stated Dr. Charles Patterson, President of Mansfield University. “As we look to the beginning of the new academic year, we will welcome to campus the incoming Class of 2024, our returning students, and many students that have made the choice to transfer to Mansfield University. We are working diligently to ensure everyone’s on-campus experience is special.” 

Fall semester classes will start early on Monday, August 17 and end Friday, November 20. Finals will be conducted online to avoid the need for students, faculty, and staff to return to campus after Thanksgiving break. 

In-person instruction, sometimes in reconfigured classrooms, will resume for small classes, labs, studios, and other courses enrolling limited numbers of students. Blended courses, using a combination of in-person and online instruction, will reduce the frequency of meeting in-person.  Multimodal courses, which allows for simultaneous in-person and synchronous streaming of instruction paired with lecture capture, will also be used for select courses. Online classes and online pathways are common at Mansfield, and additional online classes may be offered for students living both on and off campus.  

Updated Fall 2020 course schedules will be communicated by the Office of the Registrar in July. 

On-campus housing in Mansfield’s residence halls will be available for the 2020-21 academic year and accommodations allowing for private bedrooms will be made available to students. A “Drop-N-Go” move-in option will be offered by appointment beginning in July for residential students to reduce congestion and to promote physical distancing.  

The residence halls will close for the fall semester on Monday, November 23. Students who must remain on campus through finals week will be allowed to do so, if prior arrangements are made with the Director of Student Living. 

All members of the Mansfield University campus community are asked to monitor their own health daily and to take precautions as needed. Face mask are required for anyone inside campus buildings and it is expected that individuals will maintain social distancing at all times. A reusable and washable face mask and hand sanitizer will be supplied to every student and employee, though any proper face covering may be worn. 

More information, including the complete Health and Safety Plan for Fall 2020, can be found at 

Mansfield University of Pennsylvania is a public, regional university committed to providing affordable and accessible education that fosters positive social mobility for a diverse population. The university offers personalized and transformative degree programs, taught by accomplished faculty, that meet the needs of regional, state and global economies. By developing talented graduates who influence industry and enrich communities, Mansfield’s impact begins in Northcentral Pennsylvania and extends throughout Pennsylvania and around the world. Founded in 1857, Mansfield University is one of 14 institutions that comprise the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE). Learn more at