COVID-19 update: Campus programming

Following Gov. Roy Cooper’s recent announcement of Executive Order No. 169, Restrictions to Protect Lives During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Phase 3, updated guidance is available for campus programming, effective immediately.

Gathering Limits and Facility Use

On-campus gathering limits remain at 25 people for indoor settings in a single confined space.  For outdoor settings, gatherings of 50 people maximum are allowed. Community standards are applicable in all locations, for all events.

Large, outdoor facilities that seat more than 10,000 people may operate at 7% capacity. All other outdoor arenas remain subject to the following limits: the lesser of 100 people for the total seating area or 30% of the facility’s stated outdoor occupancy. Per applicable physical distancing rules, each group of people must be seated with 6 feet or more spacing between groups in all directions. For a facility without a total stated outdoor occupancy, no more than seven guests for every 1,000 square feet of the outdoor area’s square footage are permitted.

Movie theaters, select meeting spaces within conference centers, reception venues and  entertainment facilities with seating may operate at the lesser of 100 people per screen or room, or 30% of the fire code capacity, while keeping 6 feet of physical distance between people. This applies to Witherspoon Student Center Campus Cinema and select spaces in Talley Student Union, Park Alumni Center, McKimmon Conference and Training Center and Hunt Library.  Titmus Theatre and Stewart Theatre remain subject to indoor gathering size limits of 25 guests per facility.  

The special event exception request process continues for university-sponsored events or gatherings requesting an exception to the guidelines. 

Please note that while these changes allow for more programming opportunities, departments and colleges are not obligated to move to these levels for gatherings or occupancy. Each group should decide what is best for its program needs, staffing and support. 

Event Participants

NC State will begin allowing facility use by off-campus patrons, as part of university reservations and programming, effective immediately. All event requests and space reservations are subject to review and approval before scheduling and must comply with the campus requirements on gathering size and occupancy limits, social distancing, face coverings and hand hygiene.  Failure to meet NC State community standards may result in loss of access for future events. 

Colleges and departments may plan for on-campus, in-person programming for extracurricular programs, seminars and camps, to include youth programming. All programs must align with the current campus guidelines on gathering size and facility use, with the opportunity to expand as new guidance becomes available. Please note: If public health guidelines change or become more restrictive, programming will be required to meet those expectations or prepare alternative plans.

Travel Exception Process and Required Approvals 

All university travel remains subject to review and approval through the travel exception process. Visit the Travel Center for process guidelines. Please note the following: 

  • Undergraduate students are eligible for travel if their work is approved under a research restart protocol or other official university programs.  
  • Attending a large conference or gathering is not eligible for travel. 
  • International travel remains limited in accordance with U.S. Department of State directives, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines, World Health Organization guidelines and countries’ border entry/exit restrictions.  
  • For international or domestic travel identified as high risk by the U.S. Department of State or the CDC respectively, travelers are expected to remain vigilant with public health expectations of wearing face coverings, maintaining physical distance and heightened hand hygiene. University personnel traveling to these areas are advised to refrain from on-campus activities for 14 days upon return. 
  • Research and data collection activities to areas with gatherings that meet the 25 indoor and 50 outdoor participant limits or remote locations are acceptable.

The Study Abroad Office will use a country-by-country approach to determine spring and summer 2021 program viability, while travel restrictions remain in place. The Study Abroad Restricted Travel Policy remains in effect, thus programs in Restricted Travel Areas will be suspended. However, petitions for academic travel will be considered but are not guaranteed.  Overall, the objective is to resume some student mobility, when feasible and reasonable, and to create a structure to mitigate risk to the greatest extent possible.

Additional Information 

For more COVID-19 guidelines, forms and resources, visit the Working@NC State resource page. For additional university-related COVID-19 updates, information and resources, go to NC State’s Protect the Pack site. 

Thank you,

Warwick A. Arden, Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost

Charles A. Maimone, Vice Chancellor, Finance and Administration