HANCOCK — Finlandia University recently announced their plan to reopen in–person classes for the 2020 fall semester.

The Safe Open Plan 2020 was released last week. It sets up guidelines for how students will be able to return to campus for classes, while still following CDC and American College Health Association guidelines. The semester will start in August as planned, but after students leave campus for Thanksgiving break, the remainder of the semester will be online.

“We do that so we can reduce the chance of having a surge on campus, because we do know that our students come from all across the country, and often times other countries as well,” said Dean of Students Erin Barnett. “So whatever we can do to reduce the amount of travel and exposure on our local community and our campus community, we want to do that. So we will end our physical presence on Thanksgiving.”

Students will be required to be tested once they arrive on campus, and will then go into mandatory 24 to 48–hour quarantine, depending on the results of the tests. The university is partnering with other organizations in the area to hopefully have a quicker turnaround during the testing process.

“So we’re really fortunate. We’re having conversations with Upper Great Lakes Health Care and Michigan Tech, they set up a lab here in Houghton,” Barnett said. “So we’re hopeful to be able to use that local lab and get our results back relatively quickly. But we are partnering with the health department, Upper Great Lakes, to figure out how we can get those results as quickly as possible so students can resume their normal lives as quickly as possible.”

The campus only has about 180 students that live on campus full time, but Barnett says that the plan for reopening classes will provide them with the college experience they expect and enjoy.

For more information on the reopening plan, click here.