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Loyola University Chicago closes all dorms for fall semester due to COVID-19

Nearly all Loyola classes will be held online, the school said previously.

Fairfield Hall, as well as all other on-campus housing at Loyola University, will be closed fall semester because of COVID-19, the university announced Thursday.
Fairfield Hall, as well as all other on-campus housing at Loyola University, will be closed fall semester because of COVID-19, the university announced Thursday.
Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times

No Loyola University Chicago students will live in on-campus housing this fall, the university announced Thursday.

Citing COVID-19 health conditions and future uncertainty, the university announced the decision to close all residence halls for the upcoming semester, according to an email sent to the school community. The school had previously planned to put all on-campus students in single dorm rooms, with some living in the nearby Hampton Inn to allow for social distancing.

“We simply cannot put our on-campus residential students in harm’s way and risk further disruption to them and their families if they needed to move home mid-semester because of an outbreak in one of our residence halls or as a result of the state and city reverting back to Phase 3,” Thursday’s email read.

Students who already paid for room and board will receive a refund before the first week of class, which begins Aug. 24. In hopes that students will be able to be on-campus in the spring, the university is holding people’s spots in the dorms for the upcoming semester, with tentative plans to move in January.

The school has about 12,000 undergraduate students, and all freshmen and sophomores are typically required to live on campus. Loyola said the decision will have “significant revenue implications” for the school but did not say how much it stands to lose.

Students living off-campus will still be able to access school facilities and attend the few in-person courses the university is offering. Almost all classes will be held virtually, the school previously announced.

“Let us remember that Loyola is not merely a campus, but a collective of hearts sharing common values,” the email said. “We are Loyola, bound together by our Jesuit values of compassion, adaptability, excellence, imagination, and social justice.”

Students carry personal belongings as they moved out of the dorms at Loyola University in March, when the school had to shut down suddenly because of the coronavirus. Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times