COVID-19 Resources

FAQ: New Students

Topics on this page: Classes and academics • Campus life • Health, wellness, and prevention • Financial matters


Required training for all students, faculty, and staff

Health and safety training


Plans for summer 2021?

We welcome our summer students on campus for Summer A courses starting May 17 and Summer B courses starting June 28.

What are the plans for fall 2021?

As vaccinations continue, we expect that the state will continue to ease restrictions during the summer.

Undergraduate: The College is planning to have 1,100 undergraduate courses in person, 60 hybrid, and 98 online.

Graduate: Graduate programs that are designed to be in-person or as hybrid courses (part in person, part online) are expected to continue in those formats.

How can classes happen safely in a pandemic?

  • Learn more about Nazareth's state-approved protocols about masks, cleaning, social distancing, screening, testing, and more: Health, Wellness, & Prevention.
  • Courses formats include online, in person, and hybrid (blend of both). See Course Formats.

What format will my classes be? What if I want to take classes in a different format?

See details and FAQs: Course Formats

Will I be able to do experiential learning?

Nazareth has been able to continue community-engaged learning — internships and learning experiences — in creative ways that minimize risk and maximize the student experience. This includes both in-person and virtual opportunities for students to engage in hands-on learning, as well as work with international partners and student groups. The goal is to continue as many of Nazareth's experiential learning pathways as can be offered given state health and safety guidelines.

Can study groups or group projects happen? 

They've been happening in person (with health and safety protocols) and digitally using virtual meeting technology.

Academic support (including tutoring) is also available through the Center for Student Success.

Where can I find quiet spaces on campus, including for a live online class or Zoom appointment?

Many places. Details: Study Spaces >

What are the current testing and quarantine requirements?

What happens if I can't attend class due to symptoms, a specific exposure to someone with COVID-19, or a red badge from the daily screening? Will my grade be affected?

See absences on Classes & Academics >

What is the value of an educational experience that is filled with change and unknowns? Should we be hitting pause?

The pandemic is an opportunity to innovate and expand in the ways we teach and the ways our students learn, live, and thrive at Nazareth. Now is our opportunity to drive innovation and an opportunity for all students to practice the learning virtue of versatility in the face of great change. Our society and our learning environments have changed because of this pandemic. As we contemplate our shared future, Nazareth students see this as something to embrace, to build on, and to participate in. You are the students who belong at Nazareth, together, right now. This is not a time for pause; it is a time for participation.

Creating the way forward as individuals, as an institution, and as a society requires participation. It requires jumping in, taking measured risks, and asking hard questions. That is why learning in a college environment is so crucial right now. We need to be together, connected, and immersed in dialogue and discussions, particularly the difficult discussions.

Moreover, the COVID-19 pandemic is not the only thing happening in society right now; it is not the only engine of social change. The Black Lives Matter movement is advancing, in vital ways, substantive societal change. To enact meaningful change, we need YOU, the future leaders, health care workers, artists, educators — students in all fields. We need your ideas and we need you to take part now so that as you pursue your life's work, you put into action the principles of equality and justice for all peoples, which are foundational, and unwaveringly supported here at Nazareth.

Does the addition of online learning diminish the college experience or its value? And what is "online learning," anyway?

Learning happens in many ways. Innovation and ingenuity in learning have been hallmarks of a Nazareth education since the College's founding. Our founders defined Nazareth as a learning community that would continually push boundaries and engage students in different ways so graduates are ready to go out into the contemporary world and be passionate and purposeful agents of change. The world is constantly evolving, and so must we. What is constant is the significance of the Nazareth degree; the access to and involvement and commitment of the accomplished Nazareth faculty; the enjoyment of campus life and social interaction and the College’s state-of-the-art learning environments; real-world experiential learning opportunities in collaboration with communities near and far; the combined power of thought and purpose of the Nazareth student body; and the active commitment of the entire Nazareth community to the success of each and every individual student.

Chief among the changes our students have experienced is the diversification of learning experiences, including virtual learning and creative blends of in-person and virtual experiences. Colleges and universities worldwide have adopted online learning as part of their curriculum necessitated by the measures needed to keep communities safe and so has Nazareth. But Nazareth is approaching this shift as an opportunity for advancing our students’ engagement and learning, not as a lesser fall-back option. The need for workers to seamlessly shift between in-person and virtual environments is here to stay. The goal of our innovations is not to adapt until we can return to “normal,” because we are moving forward with our eyes on your future.

Developing new learning experiences is always a work in progress. And the participation of our students — experiencing new approaches, weighing in, and, with typical passion, making suggestions for betterment — is vital to our collective progress. We are eager for your input! Virtual learning has evolved since the emergency pivot to remote learning in March 2020. Our faculty’s commitment to innovation — and to YOU — has motivated them to work diligently to learn new skills to augment their teaching and classroom experiences, both virtual and in-person.


How are campus activities held during the pandemic? 

Our Student Engagement staff, student clubs and organizations, and residential life staff offer engaging in-person and virtual student activities, events, and opportunities for connecting. Student Engagement webpages >

Will Nazareth athletic teams practice and play?

Our Empire 8 athletics conference and Nazareth Athletics make thoughtful decisions after carefully weighing risks and guidance.

  • During fall 2020, when competition was postponed, Nazareth teams conducted full practices that included skill instruction, team development, and strength and conditioning — advancing the skills and developing the strength of our teams.
  • Team competition resumed in spring 2021.

Our Athletics website and coaches have the latest information.

Will families be permitted to attend student music recitals, theatre or dance performances, or student presentations on campus?

The answer depends on New York state guidelines. When they weren't allowed, Nazareth music, theatre, and dance performances still happened and were shared via video.

How do residence halls work in a pandemic — in terms of avoiding crowding (reduced density) and sharing bathrooms? Can I get take-out food? Go off campus? What's a "family unit" and when and where do I need to wear a face covering?

Policies are in place to support health and safety — and residential life staff offer support and programming to support building relationships. See Residential Life During COVID-19.

Is it OK to have friends/visitors over or go to gatherings?

  • Living on campus: See details on Residential Life During COVID-19.
  • Living off campus: Any gatherings need to follow public health and Nazareth guidelines (whichever is more restrictive). Nazareth adjusts protocols based on risk level; see COVID-19 Alert Levels.
  • All students: The College’s student code of conduct includes actions occurring off College property if they affect the security of the College community and if they demonstrate disregard for the rights of others or the discipline or general welfare of the College. Students may be sanctioned by the College for any conduct prohibited by any federal, state, or local laws, ordinances, and/or regulations and conduct that endangers the health or safety of any person. 

We all need to follow Nazareth’s COVID-19 health and safety guidelines and Nazareth Community Pledge, as shared in the required training for all students, faculty, and staff.

If someone is dropping off a student on campus, is the driver required to complete the screening as a visitor even though they will not stay on campus?

Not for brief pickups and dropoffs, which are an exception to the visitor protocols. For more: Visitor page >

For undergrad families: How can parents and families stay connected with their new Nazareth student and be assured they are transitioning well to college life? What if my student gets homesick?

Trained resident assistants (RA) are guide students who live on campus, and the Health and Counseling Center supports students experiencing personal and/or emotional difficulties while attending Nazareth.

I was planning to commute but now would like to stay on campus due to COVID concerns, since I have at-risk family members. Can I change my housing selection?

Our Residential Life staff will be happy to respond to individual inquiries.

How will move-in work? 

See our new-student move-in plans. Also check out our undergraduate new-student orientation plans.

Is the Golisano Training Center open?

The Golisano Training Center webpage has all the details.

How does dining work?

See Naz Dining.

If new students want to "scope out" their classrooms/buildings, would they need to register as a visitor prior to the semester beginning and complete the appropriate screenings?

Yes. See the Visitor webpage.

Are drinking fountains in use?

Shared equipment (such as a drinking fountain) is a possible method of virus spread, so drinking fountains are capped and not used. However, bottle filling stations remain in use.

What hours are buildings open?

See >


Is the COVID-19 vaccine required?

Yes. See COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement for more information.

What is the COVID testing and screening approach for students and employees? 

Nazareth College’s screening and testing approach is based on the latest guidance from county health officials and from New York state. 

  • Screening and monitoring: Students, faculty, and staff self-assess COVID risk factors daily using the College's online screening tool before being on campus for work and/or class, and to be guided to next steps when needed. Monitoring happens daily at kiosks on campus. See Screening & Kiosks »  
  • Testing: 
      • Students, staff, and faculty, see Testing.
      • For student-athletes and athletic staff, see Athletics.

If I feel unwell during the semester, or I am concerned that a roommate, classmate, or college friend is ill, what should I do first? 

Nazareth Health and Counseling is the place to contact for student illnesses.

What health and safety measures is Nazareth taking?

Nazareth's extensive efforts include regimens to clean and sanitize high-touch items in public areas, as well as providing sanitation stations. Nazareth installed touchless faucets and acrylic barriers, reconfigured classroom capacities and furniture layouts, outfitted additional spaces as academic spaces, and more.

Read more: Health, wellness, and prevention details >

Are masks required? 

People who've been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 do not need to wear masks or maintain physical distancing, indoors or out, with some exceptions. See details and definitions: Face Coverings webpage.

What’s the best way to stay healthy while living and/or taking classes on campus?

Get regular adequate sleep, eat nutritious meals, drink plenty of water everyday, get regular exercise, manage your time, practice stress-management techniques, and monitor for symptoms of illness. Reach out for support as needed, to Health and Counseling, the Center for Student Success, and other student services listed on the Current Students page

Also, have recommended health supplies handy: What to Bring >

Is it OK to have friends over in campus housing?

See answer, above.

Is counseling available?

Mental health services are a key component of Nazareth’s Health and Counseling services and are provided to students at no cost. See Counseling Services.

During a pandemic, what are the guidelines for students with preexisting conditions?

If you have an underlying condition that places you at higher risk, you should:

  • Complete your online health history through the Naz Student Health Portal, and include any information related to your condition(s), as well as medications you take to manage your condition. All private health information is kept in a secure electronic medical record system, and it may only be shared upon your written approval.
  • In the portal, make sure your immunization record is up-to-date, manually enter the dates, and upload a copy of your official immunization record.
  • If you are interested in specific housing for those with underlying health concerns, complete the special accommodation housing form. Also read more about special accommodations
  • Get a flu shot this fall. Free flu clinics will be offered on campus in conjunction with Wegmans Pharmacy; dates are listed on the Naz Health Services webpage.
  • You are invited to discuss your concerns with a member of our health team and can schedule a virtual appointment by calling 585-389-2500 during regular business hours, or email
  • Nazareth will provide academic accommodations for students with preexisting conditions or who need to isolate or quarantine.

Does Nazareth have contact tracers on campus and a place to house people who need to quarantine who can then attend classes (remotely)? 

Yes. See the contact tracing and quarantine sections on Health, Wellness, and Prevention.

Do you offer the seasonal flu vaccine on campus?

Yes, we have multiple flu shot clinics scheduled each fall. The dates are listed on the Naz Health Services webpage.

Housing: How is social distancing accommodated in the residence halls? 

Nazareth reduced density by reconfiguring common spaces' furniture. For more, see Residential Life During COVID-19.

What happens if someone tests positive COVID-19?

The College has protocols and rooms for isolating students who test positive for COVID-19. Protocols are in place for cleaning on-campus residences of affected students, work spaces of affected employees, and public areas of the College. Administrators work with faculty to make accommodations for extended student absences.

More details for the individual, and for the campus, are on the Testing webpage.

How many cases of COVID-19 would close the campus to in-person learning?

Nazareth's decision to restrict or suspend campus operations would be made by considering a combination of community and campus criteria, in alignment with state requirements, as outlined on the COVID-19 Cases webpage.

How does cleaning happen on campus — in classrooms, residence hall rooms, and in common spaces such as bathrooms and lounges?


How and when do I get my tuition bill?

Bills are issued online, via NazNet Self-Service, to all registered undergraduate and graduate students. See Billing Dates.

How can I get more information about financial aid?

I'm concerned about being able to afford college because my family's income is lower due to the pandemic.

Any time there is a significant change in a student's family's financial circumstances (such as loss of employment, death of a parent, serious medical condition, divorce etc.), we encourage the student or parent to write a letter or email detailing and documenting, as appropriate, the changed situation. All appeals are reviewed and responded to in writing. If a change in aid is warranted, the student will receive a new award letter detailing the revised aid amounts. Documentation of the change could include a termination letter, copies of medical bills, etc.; include specific dollar amounts (e.g. amount paid out in medical/dental expenses, projected amount of decrease in annual income). A change in a family's financial situation can be reviewed at any time during the academic year.

Why is tuition the same for online classes?

Our faculty continue to engage our students in the robust, engaging, high-quality learning experience for which we are known, including via virtual learning approaches.  

Our strategies leverage the strengths of virtual learning while also expanding possibilities beyond what would be achievable in a strictly physical setting. Virtual learning still includes face-to-face and “live” experiences that we prioritize for our students.

Virtual learning modes at Nazareth:

  • Align with our mission to provide rich experiences that provoke meaningful thought, connections, and growth —individually and collectively. 
  • Emphasize and facilitate personal interaction among students and between students and faculty members.
  • Support the student learning outcomes designed for each course, not following a prescribed, “one size fits all” approach. 
  • Include live components, which means that students are interacting live (actively in the moment) with students and faculty.

To support our individualized and innovative approach to virtual learning, the College has invested significant resources in technology, integrative tools, infrastructure, and professional support so that our students and our faculty can excel in the context of college learning today.

Nazareth's Pandemic Response Recognized

Nazareth is among the top 15 in the nation for pandemic response and social justice work, reports Great Value Colleges.

Fill out my online form.