COVID-19 Update: Information regarding spring move-in

On Dec. 16, 2020, Vice President for Student Affairs Meredith Harper Bonham ’92 provided an update regarding spring move-in plans.


Dear students who will be in residence for spring 2021,

As we close the fall semester and turn toward spring, I write to provide you with some information regarding your January arrival to campus. Students who were on campus this fall may recall these protocols, but for students who will be in residence for the first time this academic year, much of this may be new, so please read carefully. We will continue to watch the evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic and to work closely with our local public health authorities to ensure that our plans reflect the latest guidance. Please note that in order to provide our staff with a much-needed break, the College will be closed between December 21 and January 3. Therefore, you may experience a response delay in questions submitted to the accounts indicated below.

Housing Selection
The general housing selection process will begin Wednesday, January 6. Please note that for the 2020–21 year, theme and division housing will not be an option due to the de-densification of residences. All ADA housing accommodations will remain in place, in addition to assignments within program houses. More specific details regarding the selection process will be emailed to you on Friday, December 18. 

Rooms in traditional residence halls will remain single-occupancy. Based on conversations with local public health authorities, as well as study of housing models used by other campuses, we determined we could increase apartment occupancy and permit students to share rooms within these units without compromising the health and safety of our students. As is consistent with our fall semester isolation and quarantine protocols, should a student in an apartment test positive for COVID-19, they would be moved to isolation housing, and their housemates would quarantine in the apartment until Knox Public Health allows them to return to normal campus access. 

Questions? Email

Move-in Dates
All students in residence will move in the week of January 25-29 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. ET. Each student is permitted one person to assist with their move-in. Please use this link to sign up for an arrival time on the day you plan to arrive. Slots will not be assigned, but they are first-come, first-serve. Only Community Advisors will be permitted to return to campus on Monday, January 25.

As has been our practice throughout the pandemic, we must be ready to adjust our plans should public health conditions change and will strive to provide as much advance notice as possible, especially regarding arrival. 

Questions? Email

Arrival Process and Testing
When you arrive to campus in January, please first check in at the Lowry Center’s Toan Track (enter through the south doors facing the main parking lot). You will receive a self-administered, rt-PCR COVID-19 test produced by Everlywell as well as a flu shot, unless proof of prior vaccination or a medical exemption is provided. I encourage you to watch a video in advance so you know exactly how the test will be administered. Within about 72 hours of receiving your sample, Everlywell will notify you (via the email and/or text number you provided when registering your kit) that your test result is available on their website. 

If you have already tested positive for COVID-19: Make sure to bring documentation of your PCR test results or a discontinuation of isolation letter from your local public health authority. If you cannot produce this documentation, you will be tested upon your arrival. If this test is positive, you will be placed in isolation housing until you can provide a release from Knox Public Health or your local public health authority. 

Once your initial COVID-19 test and flu vaccination are complete, you will proceed to the Multi-Activity Court (MAC), also in the Lowry Center, to finalize documents, pick up your room key, and receive other relevant information. You also will receive a wellness kit that will include a Kinsa smart thermometer to assist with your required daily health assessment. You may then proceed to your residence hall for move-in. 

You and your helper must wear a face covering when outside of your residential space. Helpers do not need to undergo COVID-19 testing upon their arrival, but we ask that they conduct a daily health assessment, which includes a temperature check, a symptom review and an assessment of one’s personal contacts for possible exposure. 

Questions? Email

Quiet Period 
In order to manage the risks associated with travel and of bringing the community together for the first time, we have set in place a number of specific expectations until Monday, February 15, at 8 a.m. During this period of time, and in order to minimize contact within the Kenyon community, students are required to limit movement around campus to essential activities only. More details regarding quiet period operations are available on our website. 

During the quiet period, students will be administered a total of three COVID-19 tests (including the test administered at move-in). Should conditions warrant, especially if there is a rise in cases on campus or locally, the College may need to implement another “quiet period.”

Packing Light
Please bring to campus only those items that are essential for the semester. This is to assist you in the event you need to move into a quarantine or isolation room, or if the College needs to change course and send students home prior to the end of the semester. While we very much hope that we will not need to exercise this option, we nonetheless want to ensure that students are appropriately prepared.

Travel and Visitors
Please remember that throughout the semester, off-campus travel will be limited to Knox County, and should be minimized as much as possible. Any travel outside the county must be for essential needs, e.g. medical appointments, and will need to be approved in advance by the Dean of Students. Visitor access to campus will be limited, and guests (including family members) who are not Kenyon students are not permitted to stay overnight in residences. 


We learned a great deal this fall regarding how to operate during a pandemic, and as the success of this fall’s low caseload showed, Kenyon students have demonstrated a deep commitment to the wellness of our campus and local community. Thank you for your cooperation with these new campus expectations; we recognize they are not always easy to navigate, but as fall has shown, they are effective in keeping our campus healthy. If you have questions or feedback regarding your residential experience, please do not hesitate to reach out to me and my staff, and/or your Student Council representatives. While we will no doubt encounter a few bumps in the road, we are dedicated to the success of your spring semester. 

Best wishes during this finals week, and please be well. 

Meredith Harper Bonham ’92
Vice President for Student Affairs