COVID-19 Information

Vaccinated individuals do not need to wear face coverings inside or outside on the campus although they may do so, if they choose. Unvaccinated individuals must wear face coverings at all times indoors. They must wear face coverings when in a gathering outdoors where they cannot easily maintain six feet of physical distancing. The campus is closed to the public until July 6 except by special arrangement or for prospective students and families who are visiting the Admission Welcome Center. For detailed campus policies, please visit our policies page.

How to Report a Case

Employees who are experiencing COVID–19 symptoms or have tested positive should contact their Human Resources at or (757) 594-7145 and their department chair and dean or supervisor.

Students who seek a diagnostic test due to symptoms or possible exposure should immediately notify the Office of Student Affairs at or (757) 594-7160.

Latest Update

From Chief of Staff Adelia Thompson emailed to faculty and staff.

Dear Colleagues,

As we hoped, the Governor stayed true to his plan and lifted nearly all of the COVID-related restrictions for Virginia last Friday. Even with the good news of more freedom, life is complicated by the array of COVID policy changes at all levels of government and here at Christopher Newport. I have to admit I wonder when I should wear a mask and where to stand in the checkout line at Harris Teeter; I scour every vendor window for a change in signage, and question whether I can share an elevator with a coworker.

So - to start answering those questions about living and working on campus, our CNU COVID Strike Force has put together some common questions - and answers - we hope you will find helpful, and that we can easily update as things change. And as we all know well – they will change.

Where do I have to wear a mask and when?

Vaccinated employees do not have to wear a mask indoors or outdoors. Unvaccinated employees must wear masks, indoors and outdoors for your own protection. Anyone who is more comfortable wearing a mask should certainly continue to do so. We all have different levels of comfort as we emerge from these many months of pandemic. Classrooms will remain physically distanced through the summer – we will take on the major move of reinstating all of our spaces for “normal” use after Summer Session II is complete. In the fall, we do not plan to practice physical distancing on the campus. Important note: Each faculty member teaching in Summer Sessions I and II can make the decision to require or not require masks in the classroom for vaccinated students. Provost Doughty will be sending an email detailing classroom plans over the summer and other COVID-19 syllabus changes.

Am I required to get a vaccination if I don’t have one?

Not at this time, but the University urges those who can be vaccinated to do so in order to protect themselves and others. Vaccinations will be required of employees if and when the Governor requires it of all state employees, in which case, religious and medical exemptions will be available as needed.

Are we still physically distancing now or in the fall?

The Governor’s Executive Order that imposed distancing requirements has been lifted. The CDC’s guidance also withdraws distancing recommendations for vaccinated individuals. For the summer, we have a relatively small number of students on campus, and the vast majority of our employees have been vaccinated. For these reasons, our campus is a relatively low risk environment and we are no longer requiring that we maintain 6 feet of distance at all times. However, it is recommended that unvaccinated individuals - for their own safety and the safety of others who are unvaccinated - continue to keep distance, especially inside, where many others are present.

When does the campus open to the public and when can I bring my kids to campus?

The campus will reopen to visitors on July 6 and children, four-legged children, neighbors (and everyone else!) will be welcome then. The mask and distancing rules for visitors will be the same as shared above.

What is the policy on bringing visitors to campus between now and July 6?

Continue to follow visitor procedures as posted on our website. The check-in tent has been taken down and informing visitors about our policies is the responsibility of the hosting office or individual.

What is the policy on travel, whether university sponsored or personal?

University-sponsored travel is underway, and will follow pre-COVID procedures. For personal travel, please follow the CDC guidelines.

When contractors visit campus, what rules should they follow?

Contractors follow the University’s rules and regulations so that means they should wear face coverings if not vaccinated. The CNU office primarily responsible for a given contractor or contractor relationship must ensure those contractors follow these rules. To be clear: contractors are any individuals working for the University who are not employees of the University. From UPS delivery drivers to construction workers, contractors would be the category that covers them all.

Will there be a Setting Sail this year?

Yes, we will generally be following the 2019 plan, welcoming our new students and their parents to campus for in-person orientation and welcome.We have also increased the number of sessions from four to six to provide more space for everyone.

What are the policies for Admission - campus visits and travel for staff?

We are delighted to welcome prospective students and families back to this beautiful campus, and to send our Admission team back out into the Commonwealth and country to bring us new Captains! All Admission operations are back on normal track.

Our telework agreements end on June 30 - what’s next?

We can all return to our offices, fulltime; we no longer need to follow the staff rotation plans that were put in place to allow us to de-densify and physically distance. However, mindful of the more flexible University schedule in July, telework agreements and the schedules associated with them will be extended through July 31.

Are there summer camps on campus? Where? When?

Yes – Both Athletics and the new Mary. M. Torggler Fine Arts Center are hosting summer camps for children and teens this summer.

Is the Ferguson Center going to have performances? What about this summer? Will there still be distancing and masks in the Ferguson for performances?

Beginning in June, the Ferguson Center will be operating at full capacity once again – no more seating according to physical distancing. It will launch a full schedule of performances beginning in the fall. Ferguson Center employees will continue to wear masks when working performances with audiences. The thermometer station in the front of the Ferguson Center will remain for now.

Can meetings be in person now? Both with campus colleagues and with outside contacts? And now that we know how to hold meetings virtually, can we still use that tool?

Yes, all meetings can return to in-person, on campus or off, subject to the mask rule for unvaccinated individuals. Yes – virtual meeting tools can still be used when doing so makes the most sense for the group.

Will the thermometer stations still be in place?


These are the answers that will shape our campus life through the remainder of the summer as we prepare for the fall semester. We are also updating our website so you’ll have ready reference to this information. As we move through the summer, I will be back in touch about all of our fall plans. If you have questions we haven't answered, please send them to our Chief Communications Officer, Jim Hanchett, at Thank you for all you have done and continue to do to make this campus such a wonderful place for us to work and such an extraordinary place for our students to live and learn. Enjoy the summer. It is so nice to know that we really can do that this year!

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