COVID-19 Updates for the NYU Shanghai Community

Live Updates

This page contains the latest information available to NYU Shanghai about the COVID-19 pandemic, useful links, and FAQs.

NYU Shanghai Community Members: Please click here to log in with your NetID to see memos and announcements issued regarding the university's response to the virus.

Latest information about COVID-19

Last Updated: October 13, 2020 4:00 PM, China Standard Time

By NYU Shanghai
Relevance: All NYU Shanghai

Daily Situation Reports

World Health Organization daily situation reports
CDC 2019 COVID-19 Situation Summary
Latest statistics on Coronavirus with info about cases in Shanghai by District (Chinese)
COVID-19 Dashboard Tracking Global Cases (by Johns Hopkins CSSE)
Shine.cn Updates on the Coronavirus Epidemic (Shanghai-related news)
Coronavirus Live Updates (New York Times)
 

Shanghai
Confirmed cases: 1056
Currently hospitalized: 64
Deaths: 7
Recovered: 985

NYU Shanghai: 2*

*Two students tested positive for COVID-19 after studying away in London.  Both have since recovered.

Useful Information

Advising Information for Fall 2020
Fall 2020 Return to Campus Information

Class of 2024 FAQs
Fall 2020 Academic Calendar
NYU Shanghai Teaching & Learning Toolkits
NYU COVID-19 Updates Page
NYU Health Alert: 2019 Novel Coronavirus
New Access Restrictions to NYU Shanghai Campus/Residence Halls (PDF)

Important Dates

September 8, 2020 -- Move-in Day for First Year Students

September 9-11, 2020 - First Year Orientation

September 10, 2020 - Move-in Day for Upperclass students

September 14, 2020 -- Fall Semester Begins

Contact Information

Department Email/Phone number
Undergraduate advising shanghai.advising@nyu.edu
Graduate Office shanghai.ogae@nyu.edu
NYU's Office of Global Programs global.admissions@nyu.edu
Public Safety shanghai.publicsafety@nyu.edu | 021-2059-5500
Human Resources shanghai.hr@nyu.edu | 13764511733
Wellness Exchange 021-2059-9999
Office of Research shanghai.research@nyu.edu
General Inquiries nyushanghai@nyu.edu

Shanghai East Medical Center (NYU Shanghai’s designated hospital for all suspected cases)
No.150, Jimo Road, Pudong New Area (Line 2 Dongchang RD Station Exit 1)
Tel: 021-3880 4518
上海市浦东新区即墨路150号, 近浦东大道(2号线东昌路站1号口)电话: 021-3880 4518

About the Coronavirus

 

Health and Safety Tips

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Wear a mask when out in public.

 

Faculty Work on COVID-19

​​Letter from Shanghai The Hudson Review, ​Larry Wolff -- Silver Professor of European History at New York University
18 Lessons of Quarantine Urbanism Strelka Mag, Benjamin Bratton, Visiting Professor of Interactive Media Arts
Faculty Research on COVID-19

 

3 weeks 17 hours ago
Good news
To: Members of the NYU Shanghai Community
From:
  • Tong Shijun, Chancellor
  • Jeffrey S. Lehman, Vice Chancellor
  • Joanna Waley-Cohen, Provost
Relevance: NYU Shanghai Community

We write now to share some good news.

We have now learned that the approval process has been completed with regard to visa issuances for international students. Thanks to truly extraordinary efforts by the governments of the Pudong District and Shanghai City, as well as the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, NYU Shanghai has been given an “exemption” from the prevailing freeze on the issuance of student visas, so that we may bring our international students to China.

We are especially happy to note that this exemption applies to both students in Group 1B and students in Group 2. There will not be any gap between the transition of entering first-year students to Shanghai and the return of upper-year students.

Now that it has been granted, this exemption must be implemented through a set of procedures that begin with the issuance of Invitation Letters. These procedures will be set in motion by the authorities at the Shanghai Foreign Affairs Office once they return from their National Day and Mid-Autumn break, which lasts through October 8. Each of the hundreds of invitation letters must be produced individually in accordance with an exacting process. We expect all the invitation letters to be issued during the week of October 12. We appreciate your continued patience and understanding while these procedures are completed.

This Friday, October 9th, Dean Pe will be sending our returning international students a full set of instructions on the steps that must be taken to transform Invitation Letters into new visas as smoothly as possible. Even before receiving Dean Pe’s instructions, returning students can begin to prepare in the following ways:

  1. Identify the location of the Chinese embassy or consulate within your geographical jurisdiction;
  2. Visit your embassy or consulate’s website and review the requirements for submitting an application for the issuance of a visa;
  3. Identify possible COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing facilities near you that have the capacity to administer a test and provide results within a short window (we expect that you will need to have taken a nucleic acid test within 72 hours before you board your flight and to have had the negative results of that test certified by your embassy or consulate); and
  4. Explore flight options and possible dates of travel.

By doing this preparatory work, students can help to ensure that their entry into China proceeds in as orderly a manner as possible. (Please note that it is still premature to focus on the topics of quarantine and university housing; those matters can be addressed once a visa is secured.) If you have immediate questions, you can email Dean Pe at davidpe@nyu.edu.

We Are Shanghai!

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2 months 3 days ago
Fall semester update
To: NYU Shanghai Students
From:
  • Tong Shijun, Chancellor
  • Jeffrey S. Lehman, Vice Chancellor
  • Joanna Waley-Cohen, Provost
Relevance: NYU Shanghai Students

Dear NYU Shanghai Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors,

Last month we asked you to choose among four options for this coming semester, and many of you selected “Option B” – returning to Shanghai as soon as possible. We are now less than three weeks from the first day of classes, and we would like in this message to update you on our efforts to bring you back to Shanghai and on how we see the semester beginning.

In last month's message, we explained that the regulatory authorities were not able to issue invitation letters to all members of our international community in a single group, and that international sophomores, juniors, and seniors would be members of “Group 2.” Subsequently, Group 1 was subdivided into Group 1A (overseas employees) and Group 1B (overseas first-year students).

In our more recent message from two weeks ago, we explained that invitation letters to Group 1A had been issued. Most of the recipients of those letters now have turned them into emergency visas and will be returning to Shanghai over the course of the next week.

Unfortunately, public health concerns have meant further delays in the issuance of invitation letters to students who are outside China. The COVID-19 outbreaks that required the University of North Carolina, North Carolina State University, and the University of Notre Dame to re-close have heightened concerns at the national level here in China about the risk that university students from overseas might be vectors for spikes of reinfection.

The city of Shanghai has assured the national regulators in Beijing that our international students will comply fully with all public health requirements. We are in contact with our counterparts every day and remain hopeful that invitation letters will be authorized very soon. Unfortunately, we still do not have a timeline for authorization of letters to Group 1B and Group 2, and nothing can happen until they are produced.

The very disappointing fact is this:  Even if all the invitation letters were produced today, it would not be possible for those of you who selected Option B to secure visas in time to enter the country and complete quarantine before the start of classes on September 14.

This is not what we wanted. As all of you are well aware, NYU Shanghai’s special “double identity” is built upon a vision of students interacting every day with classmates from other cultures. It is deeply frustrating to remain in limbo as we struggle to restore that experience to our school.

Many of you have asked us to keep you informed of what we are learning about the flight possibilities that might exist once invitation letters are issued.  In our last message we described our efforts to charter a flight from the United States. The delay in invitation letters, the complexities of securing authorization from regulatory authorities in two countries, and the recent increase in the number of regularly scheduled commercial flights to China, have led us to move away from the charter plan. We are instead working with the airlines to explore the possibility of obtaining discounts on certain regularly scheduled flights from different cities if there is a sufficiently sized group of passengers affiliated with NYU Shanghai. We will provide more details on such options once we are given a definitive timeline for the issuance of invitation letters.

If you have changes to your Fall semester plans, please continue to work directly with your academic advisor to discuss your options.

Once again, we thank you for your patience and flexibility as we navigate these challenging and unprecedented times together. This continuously evolving environment has summoned us all to respond with creativity and resilience. We consider ourselves fortunate to be part of such a remarkable community, one that is fully committed to a set of values that are even more important today than ever before.

We Are Shanghai!

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2 months 3 days ago
Fall semester update
To: NYU Shanghai Students
From:
  • Tong Shijun, Chancellor
  • Jeffrey S. Lehman, Vice Chancellor
  • Joanna Waley-Cohen, Provost
Relevance: NYU Shanghai Class of 2024

Dear NYU Shanghai Entering First-Year Students,

We are now less than three weeks from the first day of classes for the fall semester. In this message we would like to update you on our efforts to bring you to Shanghai and on how we see the semester beginning.

As we noted in our last message, letters of invitation were issued to our faculty and staff several weeks ago. Most of the recipients of those letters now have turned those letters into emergency visas and will be returning to Shanghai over the course of the next week.

Unfortunately, public health concerns have meant further delays in the issuance of invitation letters to students who are outside China. The COVID-19 outbreaks that required the University of North Carolina, North Carolina State University, and the University of Notre Dame to re-close have heightened concerns at the national level here in China about the risk that university students from overseas might be vectors for spikes of reinfection.
The city of Shanghai has assured the national regulators in Beijing that our international students will comply fully with all public health requirements. We are in contact with our counterparts every day and remain hopeful that invitation letters will be authorized very soon. Unfortunately, we still do not have a timeline for authorization, and nothing can happen until the letters are produced.

The very disappointing fact is this:  Even if the invitation letters were produced today, it would no longer be possible for those of you who are outside China to secure visas in time to enter the country and complete quarantine before the start of classes on September 14.

This is not what we wanted. NYU Shanghai’s special “double identity” is built upon a vision of students interacting every day with roommates and classmates from other cultures. We postponed the start of the semester until September 14 in the expectation that we would be able to continue to fulfill that vision together live, in person, from the very first day of classes.

Now, due to factors beyond our control, we must pivot and make the best we can of the current situation. To help us do so, we are now asking all of you who are outside China to select one of the following two options, so that we can proceed to register you in classes that are appropriate to your particular situation:

  • The Transition Option. If you select this option, you will begin the semester with remote classes and will rejoin live classes in Shanghai as soon as possible. You should register only for NYU Shanghai courses and take them remotely for the time being. Please note that if you select this option, your classes will be on “China time,” which may be inconvenient until you get here, and for the first two weeks after you arrive in China you will be taking classes remotely from quarantine. When you finally arrive on campus, your professors will work with you to ensure a smooth transition to live classes.
  • The Remote Semester Option. If you select this option, you will take all your fall classes remotely for the entire semester. Your classes will combine asynchronous and synchronous instruction, and you will receive academic support tailored to your personal circumstances. Special sections of three mandatory NYU Shanghai classes for first-year students (Global Perspectives on Society, Chinese language, and mathematics) will be scheduled at times appropriate to students in other time zones. "For your fourth class, you may register for NYU Shanghai courses with seats reserved for first-year students but they will run at their scheduled times in Shanghai. You may also seek to register for any open class offered by the NYU global network for which you meet the prerequisites." In the Spring, we will work to ensure a smooth transitiion to live classes in Shanghai.

In order for us to schedule classes and sections appropriately, we ask you to let us know which option you will pursue by August 30 via this link:*/  https://forms.gle/wfsij8RdcQHE4urq8.  We apologize that we need your response so quickly, but we require this information in order to do the proper scheduling.

Finally, in our last message we described our efforts to charter a flight from the United States. The delay in invitation letters, the complexities of securing authorization from regulatory authorities in two countries, and the recent increase in the number of regularly scheduled commercial flights to China, have led us to move away from the charter plan. We are instead working with the airlines to explore the possibility of obtaining discounts on certain regularly scheduled flights from different cities if there is a sufficiently sized group of passengers affiliated with NYU Shanghai. We will provide more details on such options once we are given a definitive timeline for the issuance of invitation letters.

You are likely to have many new questions about the evolving situation, and we encourage you to look at the following two “Frequently Asked Questions” documents:

Once again, we thank you for your patience and flexibility as we navigate these challenging and unprecedented times together. This continuously evolving environment has summoned us all to respond with creativity and resilience. We consider ourselves fortunate to be part of such a remarkable community, one that is fully committed to a set of values that are even more important today than ever before.

We Are Shanghai!

*/  If, instead of choosing one of these options, you would rather postpone your studies for a year and join the Class of 2025, please contact shanghai.admissions@nyu.edu.

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2 months 1 week ago
Update Concerning Fall 2020 Semester
To: NYU Shanghai Students
From:
  • Tong Shijun, Chancellor
  • Jeffrey S. Lehman, Vice Chancellor
  • Joanna Waley-Cohen, Provost
Relevance: NYU Shanghai Students

Dear NYU Shanghai Students,

The new semester will be beginning in only one month, and we are working hard to get ready.  The situation around us keeps shifting on a daily basis, and the next few weeks will be challenging and unpredictable for us all. We truly appreciate everyone’s resilience and understanding as we move forward.

In this message we will focus on the current state of our efforts to bring overseas members of our community into Shanghai. The limitations on global mobility have not relaxed as quickly as we hoped they might at the beginning of the summer, and we want to bring you up to date on how we have been working to adapt.

Background on Foreign Citizens’ Entry Into China

As background, on March 28, foreign citizens were temporarily banned from entering China without exceptional permission. To receive such permission, one needed to follow a process whereby a number of different divisions of the local and national governments, each having its own domain of special concern, can have input. The domains range from disease and pandemic control to foreign affairs to education to municipal resource management. Following this process, someone seeking to come to China must first receive an “invitation letter” (also known as a “PU”) from the government.  They then must work with a consulate to secure a visa, arrange transportation, often with evidence of a negative COVID test result within a few day of departure, and prepare for two weeks of quarantine upon arrival.

From the end of March until the end of July, invitation letters were extremely difficult to secure, as the country sought to manage the risk that people would bring coronavirus infection with them into the country. During that period, the city of Shanghai was able to issue an average of only 100 invitation letters per week. 

August Developments – Invitation Letters and Visas

Last week, the authorities concluded that the situation had stabilized to the point that that Shanghai was able to issue 700 new invitation letters. We were deeply gratified that the city allocated one third of those letters to NYU Shanghai, for use by the group of faculty and staff we have been referring to as Group 1A. We were told that the city places a high value on our unique university and is doing all it can to help us reopen on time this fall.At the same time, the national authorities determined that citizens of Korea who are in Korea no longer need invitation letters. They may proceed directly to securing a visa. The national authorities also moved to speed up processing of visas for holders of European passports, although they continue to need invitation letters.

The next step is for the city to issue invitation letters to Group 1B, our entering international first-year students and graduate students, who are citizens of countries other than South Korea. We had hoped that this might happen this week, but that hope was stymied when last week’s international flights to Shanghai included 18 coronavirus-infected passengers.

The city’s officials have reaffirmed that they understand the importance of bringing our international students to campus, and they know that classes will begin on September 14. We hope that the next round of invitation letters will be produced next week, but at this time we cannot know for sure whether they will. And we hope that the invitation letters for Group 2 will be issued as soon after the invitation letters for Group 1B as possible.Once the invitation letters are issued, the next step is for the recipients to submit them along with a visa application form to their local consulates. The materials that are required by the consulates vary from country to country. At a minimum you will need to submit the attached visa application and health declaration form; you can begin to prepare these two documents. Other documents will be communicated by either the consulate directly or by instructions from NYU Shanghai once we secure the invitation letters.

August Developments – Transportation

The next step is transportation. Once again, we had hoped that by the end of the summer it would have been possible for the supply of seats on airplanes into China to have returned to parity with the demand for such seats. That has not yet happened, and seats are expensive. In some locations purchasing a ticket requires evidence of holding a current visa. 

Because we have a large number of students in the United States, we have been working to arrange a charter flight from there. In particular, we are working with Delta Airlines to see whether we can have a Delta charter fly from Detroit Metro Airport to Shanghai.

As with the issuance of letters of invitation, several different government authorities must grant their consent to enable such a charter to fly. In addition, the charter must operate in compliance with United States laws in order to depart from the United States. We are working hard to secure all the necessary permissions and to make sure that we are in full compliance with all applicable laws, but we are not yet at the point where the flight is authorized to go.

Because the processes of securing approvals for both invitation letters and flights have not been completed, the date we are discussing with Delta has now been moved back to Friday, September 4. The process of testing within a few days before travel and quarantine upon arrival remains in place.

ConclusionWe recognize that it is extremely frustrating to have to operate under circumstances where one cannot make definitive plans, even for international travel within the next few weeks.  We truly wish things could be otherwise.Under these circumstances, we urge you to be prepared to move quickly once the regulatory authorities act:  to proceed quickly with a visa application once the invitation letter is issued, and then to proceed quickly with flight arrangements once your visa is in hand. 

At the same time, we also advise you to be prepared for the continuing possibility of delays. The Shanghai authorities are not able to provide us with a timeline for action; all they can do is what they are doing – assure us that they will do all they can to help us resume university life in Shanghai, consistent with their overarching public health responsibilities.

If you have questions specific to your unique circumstances, please do not hesitate to present them to your academic advisor (shanghai.advising@nyu.edu) or student life (shanghai.studentlife@nyu.edu) for undergraduates and to OGAE (shanghai.ogae@nyu.edu) for graduate students.  If you have questions that you think might be of general interest to the student community, please do not hesitate to convey them to the President of Student Government, Taylah Bland, at tlb394@nyu.edu. We have weekly meetings with Taylah during which we do our best to answer all the questions that she has accumulated.

Please continue to be strong and resilient as we navigate the most challenging part of our path to the fall semester. 

We Are Shanghai!

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3 months 6 days ago
Returning to Shanghai
To: NYU Shanghai Students
From:
  • Tong Shijun, Chancellor
  • Jeffrey S. Lehman, Vice Chancellor
  • Joanna Waley-Cohen, Provost
Relevance: Students

Dear NYU Shanghai Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors,

Some of you have shared with us a video of a presentation given by an NYU Shanghai official to admitted Chinese first-year students in Chengdu. While attempting to reassure his audience that they would have international classmates this fall, our Director of Chinese Admissions made several comments that were not accurate.

As we indicated in our message last week, the government has advised us that we may not bring all our international students back in a single group. The first group will consist of first-year students who have not previously studied in Shanghai. The second group will consist of all upper-year students who have expressed a wish to return to Shanghai this fall. Contrary to what is stated in the video, we are working hard to bring this second group back.

To be specific, 251 upper-year international students indicated a preference to return in their response to the survey. The student mobility team is already working on pulling together all their travel information so that we can submit it as soon as the authorities are prepared to accept it. Once we have a sense of when the first group of students will be arriving, we will ask the government to treat all 251 students as a single group and to invite this group to return as soon after the first group as possible.

We will be updating the community as soon as we have additional information from our government partners.

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3 months 6 days ago
Update Concerning Fall 2020 Semester
To: NYU Shanghai Students
From:
  • Tong Shijun, Chancellor
  • Jeffrey S. Lehman, Vice Chancellor
  • Joanna Waley-Cohen, Provost
Relevance: Students

Dear NYU Shanghai Undergraduate Students:

We are writing as promised to update you on what the evolving pandemic situation and restrictions on international travel will mean for NYU Shanghai students during the fall semester.

The past few weeks have seen a worsening of the pandemic in some countries, even as it has remained stable and improved in others. As a result, almost all countries are maintaining severe restrictions on international travel. Here in China, the flare-up of cases last month in Beijing was successfully controlled, and Shanghai has remained a city without any significant community spread of infection.

Accordingly, classes in the Academic Building will resume on September 14. We expect all students who are currently in China to be able to attend those classes in person, even as we continue to operate under the system of “responsible reopening” that has been in place since April.[*]

The Chinese border has been closed, with very few exceptions, to all foreign travelers since March 28. At this time anyone who wishes to enter China must be sponsored by an institution that can apply for a special letter of invitation on their behalf. NYU Shanghai is such an institution, and we expect to obtain such letters for our students and faculty. However, in order to minimize the epidemiological risks associated with people returning from abroad, the authorities are authorizing communities to return in groups, not all at the same time.

As of today, it appears that the first group of people who will be able to return to China (or come to China for the first time) will include our first-year international students. NYU Shanghai’s pedagogic philosophy emphasizes the opportunity for Chinese and international students to have intense multicultural interactions, both inside and outside the classroom – this is especially critical in the first year, when class spirit and bonds are forged in the dormitories and in core classes taken by all first-year students.  First-year international students should all be able to enter the country and complete quarantine in time for the beginning of classes, so long as they have provided us with the details from a valid passport.

More specifically:

  • If you are an entering first-year student who is currently outside China and you have provided us with the relevant documentation, we will provide you with additional information next week about how the process for your entry into China is unfolding, including the process for securing a visa and how best to obtain transportation to Shanghai.
  • If you are an entering first-year student who is currently outside China and you have not provided us with the relevant documentation but you can do so, please send that information to shanghai.student-mobility@nyu.edu by Monday, July 20.
  • If you are an entering first-year student who is currently outside China, you have not provided us with the relevant documentation, and you are unable to do so at this time, you may take your NYU Shanghai classes remotely. The classes will combine asynchronous and synchronous instruction, and all students will receive academic support tailored to their personal circumstances.

We regret that sophomores, juniors, and seniors who are currently outside China and wish to return will not be included in the first group of returning students. While we are making every effort to ensure their timely return, we cannot say with confidence that they will be able to enter the country and complete quarantine in time for the beginning of classes. We do expect that they will be able to enter the country and complete quarantine during the semester, but are unable at this point to say precisely when.

Accordingly, if you are now outside China and were hoping to return,[†] and you are not an entering first-year student, you will need to select among four options:

  • Option A. You may take classes remotely for the entire semester. The classes will combine asynchronous and synchronous instruction, and all students will receive academic support tailored to their personal circumstances. You may seek to register in any open class in the New York University network for which you meet the prerequisites.
  • Option B. You may affirm your interest in returning to Shanghai as soon as possible. If you pursue this option you should register primarily for courses offered from Shanghai and take them remotely for the time being, so that your schedule will not need to be adjusted when you return to Shanghai.
  • Option C. If you are lawfully able to live and study in an NYU “Go Local” site without need for a student visa, you may indicate your interest with the Office of Global Programs through this website:  https://www.nyu.edu/academics/studying-abroad/go-local.html. Pursuing such an opportunity will not count as a “Study Away” semester. If you wish to pursue this option, you should submit your interest form before July 20. After submitting your form, you will receive further communication from the Office of Global Programs. This option commits you to staying at the Go Local location for the full semester and precludes you from returning to China part-way through the semester. Please note that you may still need to take some of your courses remotely, as most Go Local locations will be offering only a limited number of in-person courses.
  • Option D. If none of the first three Options work for you, the usual policy on taking a Leave of Absence (“LoA”) remains available. See https://shanghai.nyu.edu/academics/tuition/international/refunds-and-withdrawals. Because taking an LoA would delay your graduation, you should speak with your academic advisor before requesting such a leave.

We appreciate that this information is likely to raise many additional questions, depending on your particular situation. We have prepared several “Frequently Asked Questions” documents to provide you with assistance.  For all academic questions, please see https://shanghai.nyu.edu/advising/fall-2020. For non-academic questions pertinent to entering first-year students, please see https://shanghai.nyu.edu/classof2024FAQs.

If you are a sophomore, junior, or senior, you must complete the short survey at the following link by July 20, in order to confirm your interest in one of the Options above and to assist us in offering the courses all students need to continue to make progress towards their degrees in the fall: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdKDHCHp733V2S02Z00e8XCzLI52QmtTLYkEJZQ2l24Szb2vw/viewform?usp=sf_link.

Thank you for your patience and flexibility as we navigate these unprecedented issues together.  Our university has forged a unique identity as a close-knit, cosmopolitan society of scholars. We have had to work together with creativity and resilience to adapt to a rapidly evolving environment that is far beyond our control. As this year unfolds, we have confidence in our collective ability to keep meeting new challenges, doing what is necessary to preserve the qualities that make NYU Shanghai special.

[*] As we have previously indicated, we will also be welcoming approximately 3000 other NYU undergraduate and graduate students who are currently in China to study with us on a temporary campus elsewhere in Shanghai. We will all be doing our best to ensure that these visitors enjoy a satisfying semester as members of the NYU Shanghai community without undermining the experience of those who are pursuing NYU Shanghai degrees.

[†] If you are currently outside China and were scheduled to study away at another NYU campus or site this semester, you should still be able to do so as long as you are lawfully able to live and study at that location without need for a student visa.

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3 months 3 weeks ago
Fall Semester
To: NYU Shanghai Students
From:
  • Tong Shijun, Chancellor
  • Jeffrey S. Lehman, Vice Chancellor
  • Joanna Waley-Cohen, Provost
Relevance: Students & Parents

Dear NYU Shanghai Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors:

We write now to share an update on how we are adapting to the continuously evolving global situation, and what it implies as you plan for the fall semester.

As you all know, the COVID-19 epidemic infection was fully controlled in Shanghai in March through strict testing, quarantine, and distancing rules, and it remained controlled. Accordingly, we were able to resume live classes on our campus at the end of April. Looking ahead to the fall semester, we expect that our residence halls and Academic Building will remain open, and that we will be in full operation under our “responsible reopening” protocols.

We naturally expect that all our Chinese students will be able to be back in the classroom in Shanghai this fall. When it comes to our international students who were planning to be back in Shanghai this fall, the need to cross borders makes matters somewhat more complex. We are currently concentrating our attention on three scenarios:

  1. The most likely scenario is that the current restrictions on travel to China will be lifted and our international students will be able to return to China in time to begin classes on September 14. We expect to know by July 15 whether this scenario has come to pass, and we will provide you definitive confirmation at that time.
  2. The second-most-likely scenario is that the travel restrictions will not be lifted in time for the first day of classes but will be lifted in time for our international students to return part way through the semester. In this situation our international students will begin the fall semester by taking NYU Shanghai classes remotely and will rejoin their classmates in Shanghai as soon as that becomes possible. The classes will combine asynchronous and synchronous instruction, and all students will receive academic support tailored to their personal circumstances.
  3. The least likely scenario is that the travel restrictions will not be lifted until the fall semester is over and our international students will be taking NYU Shanghai classes remotely throughout the fall and will return to Shanghai for the spring semester.

For our junior and seniors students who are eligible to Study Away during the coming semester according to our current academic policies, please note that the global pandemic situation means that study away opportunities will be modified.  You will learn more very soon from the Office of Global Programs.

Sophomore students who are not currently eligible for Study Away will receive an update setting forth your options after July 15th.

The situation for this fall is dramatically different for Chinese students who are not NYU Shanghai students but are, rather, enrolled as students at NYU New York or NYU Abu Dhabi. For them, the most likely scenario is that they will not be able to get back to their base campus this fall. To help them out, NYU Shanghai will be opening a “temporary academic building” nearby in Pudong where they will be able to take classes appropriate to their particular degree programs pursuant to a “Go Local” program. We will want to show a welcoming NYU Shanghai spirit to our new “visitors,” and we will do our best to help them feel at home.

We regret that the ongoing uncertainties are complicating the task of planning, even as the beginning of fall semester seems to be approaching rapidly. We are continuing to monitor developments on a daily basis.

If you are an international student and have changes to your passports and have not been in touch with the student mobility team, please contact shanghai.student-mobility@nyu.edu. If and when you have academic questions, please contact shanghai.advising@nyu.edu.

This past semester presented our university with difficult challenges, and we were able to meet them thanks to our shared commitment to being a close-knit, cosmopolitan scholarly community. We are confident that those same values will serve us well, whatever new challenges may await us this autumn.

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7 months 1 week ago
A Message about NYU's 2020 Commencement
To: NYU Community
From:
  • Andy Hamilton, President of NYU
Relevance: NYU Global Community

Members of the NYU Community,

There are few academic rituals more meaningful and enduring than Commencements. On these special occasions, we come together as a community to mark the achievements of our talented graduates in the presence of families and friends, faculty and alumni; to proclaim the power of learning and scholarship; to pass the torch of knowledge from one generation to another.

It is with deepest regret, therefore, that I write to let you know that NYU’s 188th All-University Commencement Exercises, due to take place in Yankee Stadium on Wednesday, May 20, 2020, must be postponed to a date still to be decided. Likewise, the individual school graduation ceremonies cannot go forward as planned. Given the advice of public health officials, as well as the restrictions put in place by city and state authorities, and out of our own sense of obligation to safeguard the safety of our community, it is impossible to imagine we could or should hold such large assemblies this spring.

Be assured, however, that once we are on the other side of this difficult and extraordinary time, we will find a way to hold an in-person graduation exercise and properly recognize the Class of 2020 with all the pomp and circumstance you deserve and that NYU knows how to muster.

In making this decision, we have consulted with student leaders as well as the deans of our schools, and we are grateful for their guidance. In short order, the deans will also be in touch with their graduates about the plans for the school graduation ceremonies or celebrations, whether virtual this spring and/or future in-person events at a later date. And while we cannot go forward with our physical gathering in Yankee Stadium, I want you all to mark the date May 20, 2020 on your calendars, for we will be looking for special ways to make sure we stay connected and celebrate the Class of 2020 on that day and in the weeks leading up to it--and to assure you that, yes, for all eligible graduates, degrees will be conferred!

To the Class of 2020: I feel keenly the disappointment you must be experiencing and I would remind you of the special bond I feel for your class. We “entered” NYU in the same year and I so looked forward to marking our four years together as you progressed from freshman to senior year. And I recognize that this news follows a string of developments and announcements, each one more unnerving than the last. Many of you and your families may have already put plans in motion to be on campus in May. I also realize that you understandably have a multitude of questions for which we do not yet have answers as we all navigate these turbulent times. But we pledge to keep you informed over these coming weeks and months as our plans evolve and we get a better sense of our options.

In an academic career spanning four decades at five universities, the highlight for me of each of those 40 years -- without a doubt – has been Commencement. While we will have to delay this year’s celebration, what does not have to be postponed is our expression of pride in what you have accomplished. And when we do convene to celebrate the Class of 2020 it will come with an added dose of praise and congratulations for the tremendous resiliency you have shown in the face of great adversity.

Please take care of yourselves and each other.

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7 months 4 weeks ago
Taking the Measure of the COVID-19 Circumstances
To: The NYU Community
From:
  • President Andrew Hamilton
Relevance: All NYUNYU

Dear NYU Community Members,

For all of us, the media environment is filled with coronavirus-related alerts: new statistics, new locations, market swings, et cetera. With recent word of New York's first confirmed case and new guidance to universities from the CDC about foreign travel, I thought it important to write to you.

I want you to be aware that COVID-19 is the topic of daily analysis and consultation at NYU. We set that level of scrutiny because we take the issue seriously; it allows us to collectedly keep on top of new developments, to evenly make the adjustments necessary to keep our community safe and well, to communicate clearly and regularly, and to have a decision-making process as dynamic as the situation.

This week, we are taking several steps -- prohibiting upcoming non-essential international University travel, postponing some events at NYU Abu Dhabi, and allowing students to voluntarily leave Study Away sites and pursue their classes remotely -- that we think are measured and prudent, yet decisive.

And that is just the manner in which I believe we should continue to proceed. Because just as we are committed to safeguarding our community's health, so too do we think it is important to safeguard everyone's academic progress and research, and to maintain, to the extent circumstances permit us to do so wisely, the daily rhythms of university life.

I appreciate how readily uncertainty can give rise to anxiety, and anxiety to impetuousness. That is why we have made the coronavirus the subject of such close and sustained attention -- so that we can act quickly and decisively, but not impulsively.

At the moment, the most authoritative voices tell us we can go about our business normally, using the precautions we should typically take in flu season. And so we should. For now, while continuing to be attentive, we should not let our worries get the better of us. We need not don special gear for normal NYU activities. And we certainly should not allow those whom medical authorities tell us do not present any danger to be ostracized, bullied, or mistreated.

Perseverance is part of NYU's character. I am proud of and grateful for everyone's steadfastness at this moment. And rest assured, if the moment comes when there is reason to act, or to act more sweepingly, we shall do so thoughtfully but unhesitatingly.

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8 months 5 days ago
NYU Florence, and Other Coronavirus-related Developments
To: The NYU Community
From:
  • Andrew Hamilton, President of NYU
Relevance: All students, faculty, and staff

Dear Members of the NYU Community,

While there are and have been no cases of anyone in the NYU community contracting the coronavirus known now as COVID-19, here in New York or elsewhere, developments resulting from the spread of the virus continue to be felt widely: in industry, in financial markets, in travel, among public health authorities and providers, and among the regions where its reach has been greatest.  

So, this is an apt moment to update you again, particularly because of the changes in circumstances for our fellow community members at NYU Florence.

As you may have heard in recent news accounts, the incidence of new coronavirus cases has increased sharply in northern Italy.  In response, the Italian government has taken swift action, including quarantining a set of towns in regions to the north of Tuscany, where NYU Florence is located.

While we do not believe there is a particularly pressing health threat to the NYU Florence community, the events of the last few weeks has conveyed a sharp lesson to us about how countries, in their public health efforts to curb the spread of the virus, can act swiftly and unexpectedly in ways that could abruptly restrict our community members' ability to travel.

So, against this backdrop, out of an abundance of caution, and guided by the priority we place on the well-being of our students, we have made the decision to:

  • ​Cancel classes for the rest of the week at NYU Florence.
  • Have all students promptly travel home or to another location, which staff will assist them in doing with logistical and financial support.
  • Suspend operations at the campus on Thursday.
  • Resume holding classes remotely starting next Monday, making use of the tools being used by NYU Shanghai as well as the experience we have gained.

 

We plan to have the NYU Florence community carry on in this manner until at least March 29, when we hope everyone can reconvene at Villa La Pietra.  We are also currently advising students elsewhere in Europe against travel to northern Italy.

We know that for many of these students, the opportunity to spend a semester in Florence -- a world center of culture, art, and beauty -- was a dream.  As a community, we share their sense of disappointment and regret that this illness has emerged to disrupt their studies in this manner, and their hope that things will be back to normal at the end of March. 

At NYU Shanghai, classes - which are meeting remotely - successfully got underway last week, and they are proceeding well.  Vice Chancellor Jeff Lehman, who is teaching a course this semester called “Creativity Considered,” conveyed to me that while everyone would, naturally, prefer to be together in a classroom, he and his co-teacher were pleased to find that the online tools we have employed have, in fact, allowed him to maintain authentic discussion and engagement.  He said he has received similar, positive reports from other members of the NYU Shanghai faculty.  And the students have not only been resolute and patient, but gracious in their praise (PDF) for the work that faculty and academic support did to get the semester underway.

Although US health officials have indicated that they do expect to see some spread of the virus in the US, there have not yet been any cases in New York City.  Classes started here on January 27, and the vast majority of our community had assembled here by that time; by this point, we are well outside the incubation window for those who were here for the start of classes. 

In the 60-plus years since NYU opened a site in Madrid, it has increasingly deepened its commitment to global education and engagement.  Today, it is at the forefront of global higher education among US universities.

No one believed it would be easy, and that was not why we embraced that trajectory.  The determination to engage the world also meant engaging the world's challenges; that is intentional: we want our students and faculty to help find the needed solutions.  Having chosen this direction, NYU will inevitably be among the first universities to grapple with the complexities of increasingly interconnected world. 

Global is the right course for NYU. And if it sometimes presents us with hurdles, our reaction should be to surmount them calmly, resiliently, and resolutely, as we have in this instance.

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