Return to Campus Framework

Return to Campus Framework

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the health and safety of our Nipissing community has been paramount and has served as the guiding principle behind all of our decisions.

Early on in the pandemic, Nipissing University established an Operational Readiness Committee (ORC) to identify, evaluate and offer proposals related to pandemic concerns with the goal of creating a multi-phased implementation plan for the eventual return of campus operations. The Committee will remain in place for the remainder of the pandemic. Members of the ORC participate in national and provincial university peer group meetings and share best practices with the committee for evaluation.

The Return to Campus Framework presented below was developed by the ORC with input from a variety of sources and stakeholders, incorporating best practices to ensure the health and safety of our community. The Framework offers a gradual, phased approach to safely bringing students, faculty and staff back to campus.

You’ll note that there are no specific timelines attached to the phases as the timing and transition from one phase to the next will be guided by provincial directives and public health advice. The Framework is a living document and will remain flexible in order to comply with provincial requirements and address guidelines provided by the Council of Ontario Universities.


The University’s Return to Campus Framework is based on the following assumptions:

  • The health and safety of the entire Nipissing University community is paramount
  • Enhanced cleaning protocols will be in place for common, high contact, and high traffic areas
  • Personal hygiene, regular hand washing, and physical distancing will be in place
  • Signage, barriers, and personal protective equipment / community protective equipment (PPE/CPE) will be utilized as required and as available
  • Screening will be required for those reporting to campus until further notice

Current Phase

Nipissing University is currently in: Phase 0 - Restricted Campus Access


Phase 0 - Restricted Campus Access

  • Campus access is restricted to those who are required to perform essential duties, as defined by the province (i.e. Facilities & Maintenance, Residence Services, University Technology Services, Caretaking/Custodial, Finance, Registrar, HR/Payroll, and Shipping & Receiving).
  • Creation of the Operational Readiness Committee in preparation for future phases
  • Construction and maintenance projects continue (as permitted by the province)
  • Research Recovery Plan implementation

Phase 1 - Required Campus Access

  • Phase 1 represents campus operations permitted in compliance with the provincial framework requirements
  • Campus access is expanded to allow more Nipissing University employees to work from campus
  • The building will be prepared to comply with all social distancing requirements
  • Phase 1 department plans will be developed in consultation with employees to determine those required to return to campus
  • Employees returning to campus will be provided with appropriate notice
  • Wherever appropriate, NU employees will be encouraged to continue working at home
  • Students may be permitted to visit campus to obtain limited available services - pre-approval may be required
  • Student Residence operations will be in the planning stage

Phase 2 - Limited Campus Access

  • Phase 2 represents expanded campus operations permitted in compliance with the provincial framework requirements
  • Campus access is expanded to include more staff members from most university departments with maximum capacity limits implemented
  • Students will be permitted to visit campus to obtain approved services
  • Student Residence operations will be limited with ongoing planning for fall intake

Phase 3 - Open Campus Access

  • Phase 3 represents further expanded operations permitted in compliance with the provincial framework requirements
  • Campus access is expanded to include more staff, faculty members, students and visitors
  • Resumption of all remaining on-site services
  • Student Residence operations fully enabled with protocols in place


For questions regarding the Return to Campus Framework, please contact: