Aerial view of Messiah University

Our commitments

Messiah is all about community. It’s who we are!  We are deeply grateful to our students and employees for navigating the pandemic together to finish a safe, healthy and in-person 2020-21 academic year.  

This fall, Messiah will be open for a full in-person, on-campus experience*providing face-to-face classes, robust co-curricular programs such as in-person chapel, athletics, clubs and organizations, as well as off-campus educational opportunities. The University has also opened up off-campus travel and  on-campus socialization and restored visitor access to campus. Messiah's ongoing response to COVID-19 continues to prioritize community health and safety with student learning, care and support.

*Messiah University's fall 2021 plans are tightly integrated with evolving state and federal authorities' guidance and directives, and as such, are subject to ongoing change. Messiah will notify students and employees of urgent updates via campus email and weekly updates to our emergency blog.


COVID-19 Dashboard

Let’s keep going! #TogetherAtMessiah

Together at Messiah we can keep our campus community healthy, safe and moving forward. Messiah’s “best shot” for getting our campus life back to normal is for our students and employees to get fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Learn more

Messiah's best shot is community immunity

Messiah's COVID-19 Response Protocols

We learned many creative new ways to carry out our mission during COVID-19, but Messiah’s authentic Christian educational community always remains at our core. Below is a summary of some important protocols that will help keep our campus community safe, healthy and open in the year ahead "Together at Messiah."   

View Messiah's summer 2021 protocols and policies for students, employees and campus visitors including masking, travel, daily health screenings and off-campus access and visitation. 

Messiah University is excited to welcome students for a full on-campus, in-person experience, and return to regular operations in fall 2021! 

Undergraduate Student Prearrival Checklist (PDF)

Read full communication from President Phipps (06.28.21 PDF)


Role of the Engle Center

Messiah's Engle Center is coordinating the University's COVID-19 screening, testing, quarantine/isolation, contact tracing and medical care protocols—including serving as the liaison with government and health care authorities. The University has added additional staff hours at the Engle Center and aligned its resources to continue to provide for the routine health of our students, while simultaneously navigating this public health crisis.This includes:

  • providing resources and developing clear, concise procedures for COVID-19 testing (both symptomatic and asymptomatic), screening, surveillance and containment
  • identifying locations and support protocols where students who need to be isolated or quarantined may be cared for on campus
  • proactive stocking of personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • expanding on-campus telehealth and 24/7 telehealth resources for students

Testing protocols

Summary of spring 2021 COVID-19 testing plan:

  • Prior to arrival: All residential and commuter students were asked to self-quarantine for 10 days prior to the start of the semester. All on-campus students are also required to provide documentation of a negative COVID-19 test prior to arrival on campus.
  • On-campus students will participate in a mix of asymptomatic full population testing and asymptomatic population sampling testing throughout the semester, as coordinated by the University.
  • Once on campus, all students will use the daily FalconLink check-in procedure to register their temperatures and presence of symptoms with the Engle Center.
  • Symptomatic individuals or individuals with known exposure to a confirmed positive case will be tested and housed in quarantine while awaiting test results.
  • The University uses a combination of point-of-care (POC) testing, and/or external lab testing based on a student's individual situation, symptoms or exposure. 

The University is closely following the CDC and Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) Guidelines. For those who test positive, we contact the DOH immediately according to HIPPA guidelines, and follow the appropriate contact tracing and notification protocols.

Summer 2021 employee/student Falcon Health Screening protocols

Read Messiah's decision re: COVID vaccination for fall 2021

Read the University's full COVID-19 health and safety protocols. 

Visit the University's COVID-19 dashboard 

Messiah FAQs re: the COVID-19 vaccine 

Undergraduate students: isolation and quarantine care

While we are working hard to promote a healthy and safe campus environment, Messiah University is also prepared to care for the needs of students who may have been exposed to, or who test positive for, COVID-19. The below plans reflect our commitment to students' individual health needs and the safety of the campus community.  

For the purposes of this student care section, the following definitions apply:

  • Quarantine - Quarantine is used to keep someone who might have been exposed to COVID-19 away from others. Quarantine helps prevent spread of disease that can occur before a person knows they are sick or if they are infected with the virus without feeling symptoms. People in quarantine should stay home, separate themselves from others, monitor their health and temperature, and follow directions from the health center.
  • Isolation - is used to separate people presumed infected with the virus (those who are sick with COVID-19 and those with no symptoms) from people who are not infected. People who are in isolation should stay home until it’s safe for them to be around others.

         Quarantine and Isolation Care FAQs

         Watch the video: Entering Quarantine or Isolation Care

Undergraduate quarantine and isolation housing

Smith Apartments, Sections A and B and the Climenhaga Homestead have been reserved for on campus quarantine and isolation housing. These facilities have separated entrances from other living spaces and accidental access can be precluded by blocking card access or locked doors. Each person in quarantine/isolation will be designated a room with access to a private bathroom. 

Read more details about the Engle Center's testing, quarantine and isolation protocols on this page

Caring for vulnerable students

Since the CDC considers persons with certain chronic illness to be at higher risk for COVID-19, members of our community with the chronic or uncontrolled illnesses listed below are encouraged to consider Messiah's fully remote learning option. In addition, this option is important to consider for individuals who have severe or uncontrolled anxiety or depression that could make the anticipated challenges of the semester particularly difficult to navigate. The chronic conditions that put a person at increased risk include the following:

  • Chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
  • Serious heart conditions Immuno-compromised (e.g., cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow/ transplant, immune-deficiencies, prolonged use of steroids or immune-weakening medication)
  • Severe obesity (BMI 40 or higher)
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis
  • Liver disease

If you self-identify as a member of one or more of these vulnerable population groups, but do not wish to be a fully remote student, it is important that you contact the Engle Center for Counseling and Health Services to discuss your situation and your options for care and support. On-campus graduate students should also contact their respective program director.

Caring for vulnerable employees

We recognize and support the need to provide accommodations for employees who are vulnerable to COVID-19 or employees who live with individuals who are vulnerable to COVID-19. Currently, per the CDC, an individual falls into the vulnerable category if they are over age 65 and/or have one or more of the following conditions:

  • Chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
  • Serious heart conditions Immuno-compromised (e.g., cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow/ transplant, immune-deficiencies, prolonged use of steroids or immune-weakening medication)
  • Severe obesity (BMI 40 or higher)
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis
  • Liver disease

Employees should contact their supervisor and human resources at  if they need to request and explore their options for an accommodation. Note: Accommodation requests are processed via human resources and require supporting documentation. 

Residence Hall Living

Life in the residence halls looks different this year. Due to federal and state guidance on COVID-19 mitigation, it was determined that the safest way to house our students involved decreasing our housing capacity within the residence halls to limit possible exposure. To do that, some students from the apartments (as well as juniors in the residence halls) were offered to reside at nearby Oakwood Hills apartments for the coming year. As such, Oakwood Hills currently serves as an extension of our on-campus housing offerings this year. This move allowed some students previously assigned in our traditional residence halls to move into apartments, creating significantly less condensed living on each residence hall floor.

Students living in on-campus housing had the expectations and guidelines related to life together in the season of COVID-19 thoroughly reviewed and explained to them by residence life saff during their orientation process. 

Read more about residence hall living and undergraduate student expectations during the 2020-21 academic year.

Undergraduate course delivery

Messiah University is offering the full range of sping 2021 classes, and is committed to offering residential, face-to-face instruction as part of its undergraduate experience this spring. In addition, these courses will be available for students who need to learn remotely, including internationally based students who may not be able to travel; so if students are not comfortable or able to attend in person, we still welcome you to begin classes with us this spring.

Central to our preparations are ensuring proactive health and safety measures in our in-person classroom setting. For instance, to achieve adequate social distance, some classroom assignments may be changed from typical locations while other courses will employ a staggered model of rotating the days when students attend face-to-face and the days when students attend remotely throughout the week. While the model used to ensure adequate health and safety may vary from course to course, every course will be designed and delivered in a way that provides an equitable, effective learning opportunity for students, whether they are present face-to-face or learning remotely. This type of high-flexibility, high-quality course delivery will provide students the most options based on their individual health needs.

The models of classes that Messiah is using during COVID-19

Enhanced face-to-face (F2F); Lecture-based classroom

This version of course delivery looks and feels very much like a traditional lecture classroom, but includes synchronous participation from remote students. Classroom technology makes it possible for remote students to hear and see at least the most critical elements of the classroom presentation/discussion and to interact with the instructor or peers. Course pedagogy is generally the same as it would be for a traditional lecture course delivery.

Enhanced face-to-face (F2F); Activity-based classroom

This version of flexible course delivery makes use of what some call a “flipped classroom” pedagogy.  Direct instruction is generally asynchronous and moved in advance of the class hour and delivered via recorded mini-lectures, focused readings, or brief “primer” assignments. The class time is then devoted to activities such as problem solving, discussions, reviewing paper drafts, etc.


The HyFlex strategy effectively blends elements from the two prior course delivery strategies to provide options for the student and for content delivery.  Students who can attend class F2F do so, while students who cannot attend the physical classroom time can participate either synchronously or asynchronously using materials available online that are functionally equivalent in content and rigor with what will be done in the classroom. While this option provides flexibility, it also entails significant investment in and changes to course design, preparation and delivery.


A small percentage of courses may be identified by the institution as needing to be delivered entirely online.  While this will not be the norm, this will a supported modality in that limited number of cases where/when necessary.

It should be noted that the options described above to apply to instruction that falls into the category of traditional classroom instruction. The plan for classes that don’t easily fit into this model, such as studios, labs, ensembles, and experiential learning opportunities, may be read below.

Read plans for clinicals, labs, student teaching and performing arts

Readiness to pivot online

All of the models above are adaptable to a rapid transition to online, if the University needs to respond to public health directives, as well as a pivot back to Enhanced F2F/HyFlex. This enables Messiah to continue to provide quality academic instruction in a fluid way throughout the uncertainties that are inherent due to ongoing adjustments related to COVID-19.


January course delivery changes for DPT and MOT

Lecture coursework for DPT and MOT will be moved online through Jan. 31. This decision will be revaluated by Jan. 22, with the intent that a date for lecture coursework to be face-to-face can be determined. Classes will continue to meet at the currently published time online synchronously. Lab courses will continue to meet face-to-face at Winding Hill.

View the School of Graduate Studies spring 2021 academic calendar.

Academic modifications: on-campus graduate programs

Some accommodations have been made to accomplish appropriate distancing measures in face-to-face classes and labs. Faculty will deliver some didactic (lecture) courses entirely online while others will be delivered in a hybrid format. The decision to pivot  a face-to-face course to 100 percent online will be made by the institution.

Laboratory educational settings have been modified to enforce social distancing, according to square footage in the room. Students will be placed in lab groups for the entire semester to limit exposure. All students in laboratory courses are trained at the beginning of the course in health and safety procedures, and this instruction will include instruction in COVID-19 transmission prevention and completing lab work while social distancing and wearing a mask. For learning activities that require modified (closer) distancing in labs to fulfill learning objectives, the School Dean will approve proposals from Programs that outline the parameters and precautions, such as additional PPE, for these learning experiences.

Guest speakers (not Messiah University employees) for on-campus courses will be strictly limited to those whose engagement is a critical component of the curriculum. In most cases, guests will engage with students virtually. Due to the need to limit visitors, in-person guest speakers are not permitted for clubs and organizations.

The on-campus graduate programs do not offer a remote learning option. Faculty will work with individual students who need to miss classes/labs so that each student can reach the appropriate learning outcomes. All faculty will utilize CANVAS, recorded lectures, video demonstrations, and online case studies to supplement the face-to-face lab courses.

On-Campus Graduate Student COVID-19 Expectations and Accountability

1. All on-campus graduate students (regardless of where they have been living prior to the start of the semester) are expected to sign and abide by the community promise and follow best practice health and safety practices in anticipation to the start of the semester and throughout the semester. This includes:

  • Participate in the Falcon Health COVID-19 Screening
  • Particiipate in the University's population and sampling COVID-19 testing for students
  • Wash your hands often and practice good hygiene.
  • If you leave your home for any reason, you must wear a mask, practice strict social distancing and be vigilant in hand-washing.
  • Arrange for routine medical appointments to occur more than 2 weeks before your arrival on campus.
  • Avoid public areas including malls, theaters and large public gathering spaces.
  • Monitor your temperature daily and watch for symptoms.  If symptoms develop, call your health care provider BEFORE seeking in-person care.
  • Do not use public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.
  • Postpone any travel.

Clinical, Field Work and Practicum

Prior to resuming clinical, field work and or practicum experiences, students must complete the School of Graduate Studies Return to Clinical, Field Work/Practicum check list indicating they have read and agree to comply with the policy including signing and returning the form. Students must also sign the institutional waiver that informs them of the potential disease risk. Students must also follow all the clinical site-specific policies and procedures.   


Classroom modifications for social distancing

The CDC and the PA Department of Education (PDE) have provided guidelines for institutions of higher education that emphasize such things as the importance of hygiene, 6-foot spacing where feasible, and face coverings.  Per PDE guidelines, “COVID-19 requires that postsecondary institutions rethink the ways in which they conduct learning and other activities on campus.” Specific areas that have been addressed are:

  • Building flow has been adjusted in order to limit the spread of illness. Where possible, hallways will be one-way, stairways are one-way, and building exit and entrances are separate. Elevators should be occupied by only one person at a time.
  • Proper signage is important in facilitating new ways of moving around campus. Appropriate signs will be placed throughout the campus to assist with the adjusted flow.
  • ADA compliance is being maintained. Those with accessibility issues will not be required to follow building traffic patterns where prohibitive.
  • All classroom spaces have been evaluated and adapted to allow for social distancing. New room capacities are posted in each space. Furniture should not be moved into, out of, or within rooms.
  • The number of students who will attend class in-person at one time will be limited to accommodate appropriate social distancing of 6 feet between individuals when feasible.
  • In situations where 6-foot spacing is not feasible, such as in laboratories or studios such as film that require closer proximity, increased PPE, such as glasses/goggles, lab coats, and gloves will be used. In addition, some professional organizations in these areas have published recommendations for mitigating risk that can be incorporated as well.
  • Technology solutions are being provided to allow students to engage in group work, while still social distancing, and also continuing to incorporate remote learners into class discussions.

This year the Division of Student Success and Engagement is providing our undergraduate students with a meaningful, modified offering of cocurricular programs, services and facilities designed to protect their health and safety during the challenging circumstances of COVID-19. 

Read an overview of how Messiah University is facilitating counseling services, chapel and campus ministries, athletics (including access to the fitness center and gyms), academic support services and career and professional development for students.

Campus deep cleaning

Since the start of the pandemic, Messiah staff have been deep cleaning and disinfecting all areas of campus, focusing additional resources on high-traffic and common-use areas. The University has installed protective Plexiglas and other safety shields, increasing hand sanitizing stations, thinning out furniture/seating and adding signage to help with social distancing. Enhanced cleaning and disinfecting protocols will continue throughout the entire academic year in compliance with all state and CDC guidelines to help protect our campus community. 

Residence hall cleaning

All residence hall buildings will be thoroughly disinfected before students return for spring semester. During the semester, campus staff are assigned to full cleaning bathrooms, hallways, lounges, kitchens, stairwells and public areas of residence halls once daily. Additional hourly sanitizing is applied to high-touch areas. Residence Life assigns each student to clean their own sink, commode, and shower in the bathrooms. Students are provided supplies and asked to help wipe down their assigned bathroom facilities before and after use. Campus staff and student employees are assigned bathrooms to full clean such that residence hall bathrooms are cleaned and sanitized seven days per week.  

Addressing other potential health risks

The following additional steps will be taken to reduce the spread of illness:

  • Classrooms have sanitation spray and wipes so students and faculty can wipe down space between uses.
  • Reduced amount of employees and students allowed in campus vehicles
  • Campus water fountains are temporarily turned off in compliance with PA Department of Health
  • Hand sanitizer is placed at building entrances
  • Cleaning supplies are available on each campus building floor
  • Increased HVAC coil/duct cleaning and filter changing 
  • Installation of Plexiglas shields at main interaction points where six feet of distance is not feasible

Read the full university cleaning plan

Messiah University Dining Services has a solid reputation for outstanding food, great service and an award winning food safety program. Dining Services is enhancing the already existing excellent safety practices and protocols based upon guidance from guidelines of the State, the CDC, and our local regulatory authorities to ensure a safe and quality dining experience for all of our students, staff and guests. 

Executive summary: Messiah University Dining Safety Plan

  • All students, staff and guests are required to wear a mask in the dining facilities until they are seated at a table.
  • The dining rooms and food courts have furniture and spacing arranged to maximize social distancing.
  • The dining rooms are adjusted for reduced capacity, allowing for six-foot socially distanced seating throughout, and each restaurant will have separate and specific entrances and exits posted.
  • Automatic hand sanitizers are placed at each restaurant entrance as well as throughout the dining areas.
  • Six-foot distancing signage is posted throughout the dining facilities and Plexiglas barriers with be installed at each register and food serving location.
  • The culinary service in the Lottie Nelson dining hall offers to-go, no touch or minimal touch services with all self-service stations being utilized so that students may dine in Lottie, the Martin Commons, in Brubaker or at other locations on campus.
  • Lottie, The Falcon, The Union Café, The Café Diem and the Café @ Winding Hill each offer contactless payment options, and an extensive variety of to-go offerings and services.
  • We offer on-line ordering which is highly recommended for fast and efficient service pick up or dining in at both the Union Café and The Falcon.
  • If quarantine meals are be required, Dining Services in partnership with the Engle Health Center has a fully automated quarantine meal service program designed to deliver meals directly to the student’s door.  
  • The annual Dining Services employee orientation has been designed to include extensive and comprehensive training for all Dining Services employees regarding effectively and consistently maintaining the highest standards for safe and sanitary foods and facilities in light of COVID-19.
  • In addition to our extensive daily cleaning and sanitizing operational checklists, every contact surface within each operation is sanitized and or disinfected after each use.
  • Specific COVID-19 employee training sessions demonstrate proper personal hygiene, hand washing, cleaning surfaces, social distancing, glove usage and COVID-19 symptoms awareness.
  • Every full-time employee in Dining Services is a Certified ServSafe Manager with the National Restaurant Association and will be responsible for the initial and ongoing quality training of our part time and student employees.

The Dining Services team is excited to serve our students and will continue to work tirelessly to ensure that each campus restaurant is a safe, healthy, inviting and quality dining experience for our students and guests.

Read the full dining safety plan.

Regarding Messiah's adjusted fall 2020 and spring 2021 semesters:

Messiah University is absorbing significant costs to implement a comprehensive approach to safely operating our campus, diminishing the spread of COVID-19 and delivering a high-quality enhanced educational model that flexibly offers the majority of our coursework both face-to-face and remotely. While there will be no fees or additional charges billed to students for these measures, there will also be no accommodation for refunds to students due to the announced modifications to the 2020-2021 fall and spring semesters.

However, if further government directives require Messiah to move its coursework online earlier than planned, senior administration would review and consider issuing credit to students for room and board. Any university calendar adjustments during this challenging time have been made, and will continue to be made, specifically with the needs and safety of our students, their hometown communities, and the greater Messiah community in mind.  

If a student decides to change from a residential to a fully remote student for the spring semester, will they receive a housing refund?

Students who voluntarily make the switch from residential to fully remote will be reimbursed based on the dates set for our withdrawal students. Generally, it is a monthly percentage reduction from the start of the semester until February 25, 2021, which is the last day for a student to switch from residential to fully remote and still receive a partial housing adjustment to their bill. For students with dining dollar meal plans, any unused dining dollars will be credited to their fall 2021 bill, and the operations charge is nonrefundable. For students with ala carte plans, any remaining ala carte balances will be credited to their fall 2021 bill.  It is important to note that changes to remote-only status after February 25, 2021 will not result in room or board credits. View Messiah's undergraduate refund policy

Questions regarding this policy, or an individual student’s account, may be directed to Student Financial Services at or 717.691.6004. 





Daily health screenings and accountability

Effective July 20, 2021, fully vaccinated employees who have submitted documentation of their vaccination status to the Engle Center do not need to complete the Falcon Health Check-In unless experiencing possible symptoms of COVID-19.* Unvaccinated employees should continue to monitor their temperature and complete the Falcon Health Check-in each day they are reporting to work on campus.  All employees are required to report positive COVID-19 test results and/or exposure to individuals positive for COVID-19 to the

Reporting COVID-19 illness policy while at home


Step 1: Do not come to work.

Step 2: Notify your supervisor that you are ill and not coming to work.

Step 3: Seek immediate guidance from the Engle Center by calling 717.691.6035 or emailing Messiah’s COVID-19 triage nurse at


Step 1: Notify the Engle Center at 717.691.6035.

Step 2:  Inform your team that a member of your team is out sick, being careful to share only the

information your employee wishes be shared.

At a minimum, employees must stay home until they are fever-free for three consecutive days

without fever-reducing medication and ten days since the onset of symptoms.

Reporting COVID-19 illness policy while at work


Step 1: Ensure you are wearing a mask.

Step 2:  Inform your supervisor.

Step 3:  Seek guidance from the Engle Center by calling 717.691.6035.


Step 1:  Ensure your employee is wearing a mask.

Step 2: Notify the Engle Center by calling 717.691.6035.

Step3:  Inform your team that a member of your team is out sick, being careful to share only the

information your employee wishes be shared.

At a minimum, employees must stay home until they are fever-free for three consecutive days

without fever-reducing medication and ten days since the onset of symptoms.


Messiah Travel Policy (revised June 1, 2021)

Employee Summer Travel (Institutional and Personal)

  • Messiah University expects employees to follow CDC guidelines when travelling, whether travel is for institutional or personal purposes:
  • Employees, regardless of vaccination status, are no longer required to self-quarantine or test after returning from domestic travel before they physically return to campus.
  • Regardless of vaccination status, employees who travel should wear masks when required, practice social distancing, avoid large crowds, and practice vigilant hand hygiene.
  • Regardless of vaccination status, all employees should still be careful to monitor for COVID-19 symptoms and get tested if symptoms develop.
  • The University reserves the right to limit the institutional travel of unvaccinated employees.
  • Testing and quarantine protocols remain in place for unvaccinated employees traveling internationally.

Student Employee Summer Travel

Messiah University students working on campus over the summer should expect to follow the above employee guidelines for personal travel if travelling.  


Campus visitor policy (updated effective 5/17/21)

General public

Our relationship with the local community is important to Messiah University. Our campus is private property, but as good neighbors, we have been pleased to provide access to the public as we are able, including the library, areas for walking, use of the fitness trail, and access to the Yellow Breeches Creek by way of Messiah University’s Starry Athletic Complex.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, we have needed to restrict access to our campus to ensure the health and safety of our students and employees, and have appreciated the community’s cooperation. Messiah University is pleased to share that on May 17, 2021, campus will reopen to visitors. This includes access to the library, areas for walking and the Yellow Breeches. All guests are expected to follow CDC guidelines regarding masks and social distancing, as well as any other campus-specific signage.

Messiah University does reserve the right, as needed, to restrict access to campus and the Yellow Breeches.  As we manage events and crowds on campus, creek access will be limited or closed for access on the following dates found on the Department of Safety website.  

We appreciate your cooperation as we care for our campus community as we open Messiah’s property to the public once again.  

Masking policy for campus visitors—Summer 2021

The below protocols were developed for campus visitors in alignment with Messiah University’s employee mask policies, CDC and Pennsylvania state guidelines, and the goal of keeping our campus community and guests safe.


  • The University requires all campus visitors, regardless of vaccination status, to wear masks in public, common-use spaces of all campus buildings (except when eating or drinking).
  • Fully vaccinated campus visitors may remove their masks while in private, dedicated office or meeting spaces on campus, regardless of the vaccination status of others in the room. Unvaccinated visitors must keep their masks on.


Masks may be removed when physical distancing is able to be maintained.

As campus, state or CDC guidelines are updated, our policies will continue to be reviewed. We will communicate with the campus community if there are changes to these guidelines as the summer progresses.

Undergraduate admissions visits

The Undergraduate Admissions Office is currently hosting a limited number of on-campus visits each week for prospective students and their families. Learn more about undergraduate campus visits and events. 

Graduate enrollment and campus visits

Prospective students who desire to visit campus should schedule an advance appointment with the graduate enrollment staff.  All guests will respond to an institutional health questionnaire before coming to campus. Guests must wear masks and maintain social distancing during their visit. 



Events and gatherings: COVID-19 guidelines

Events have always been an important part of campus and community life at Messiah. However, given the mitigation risks involved with large crowds, the way that we do events will necessarily look different this year. All indoor and outdoor gatherings will comply with the directives from the State Department of Health and guidance from the CDC for Events and Gatherings. 

Events will continue to follow the revised event protocols implemented in for the fall semester. Approved gatherings that are mission-driven will utilize guidelines around face coverings, hygiene, significantly reduced attendance (limited primarily to students) and capacity counts, and physical distancing to keep the community safe.

In order to provide events and services the following key strategies will be applied:

  • Adjusted attendance maximums, physical distancing and mask-wearing
  • Students first: Limit to student attendees with virtual options for others
  • Low-touch environment (no printed tickets or programs; tickets scanned electronically)
  • High-hygiene environment
  • A mix of virtual/live-streamed and in-person strategies
  • Lines separated/distanced through lobbies and using separate entrance to theatre
  • Online and call-in ticketing only; touchless tickets will be scanned
  • Sanitize venues daily
  • Signage listing precautions
  • Remote/virtual sessions with the artist/speaker for students/faculty prior to events when available

Facility rentals

Messiah University will suspend all facility rentals through May 8, 2021. On or about March 1, the University will determine if rentals can resume at the conclusion of the spring semester.

You may read the full Messiah University event and gathering plan here. 



How we'll communicate with you

Messiah University is utilizing a mix of the following communication tools to keep its campus stakeholders--including current undergraduate and graduate students, current parents, employees, prospective students/parents, and the appropriate government/health authorities--informed about its campus reopening strategies and related COVID-19 health and safety measures:

  • Messiah’s COVID-19 resource website
  • Messiah Emergency Blog
  • Together @ Messiah website
  • Campus mass email system (current students, employees, current parents and alumni)
  • Slate CRM (prospective undergraduate and graduate students and prospective undergraduate parents)
  • Messiah’s institutional social media platforms
  • Student and parent portals (current students and parents)
  • Canvas Learning Management System (current students and employees)
  • Campus health and safety signage  (particularly in common areas like dining halls, gyms, classrooms, labs)

Timely updates: In addition to communicating Messiah’s COVID response protocols via this website, the University will use the above methods to continue to update stakeholders about breaking developments, news and changes in a timely and transparent manner.

Clery Act Compliance

In compliance with The Clery Act, and guidance from the U.S. Department of Education regarding Clery’s intersection with COVID-19, Messiah University will issue a campus Emergency Notification (EN) to students and employees at the start of the academic year informing them about COVID-19, along with the necessary health and safety precautions, as well as where to obtain ongoing information about the number of on-campus COVID cases, and how to connect to the resources of regional health authorities and the CDC. The University will also provide a banner on that will provide this information to the broader campus community. 





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