Skip to main content

Message from President Leshin: Active Planning for Return to Campus

Note: This is dated information and may not reflect the current policies in place on campus. Please refer to We Are WPI for the latest information.

April 27, 2020

Sharing a message we sent this evening to accepted students and their parents.

It’s a question on many of your minds: “Will WPI be open for classes in the fall?” The answer is that there is nothing we want more, and the university is actively working toward that as our baseline plan. The fall is one of the most special times of year at WPI, and we are doing all we can to make it possible for students, faculty and staff to be on campus to experience it. 

WPI’s Coronavirus Emergency Response Team (CERT) is actively focusing on how the university will begin a safe, phased re-opening over the summer and is conducting formal scenario planning for fall. WPI is unleashing all of the creativity and ingenuity of this community to think through how to operate our residential campus safely in the face of this pandemic, and we are looking at everything from academics to housing to dining to athletics. CERT meets frequently and brings together expertise from across the university to carefully monitor the situation, consider all factors and potential scenarios, and determine how we can move forward safely together.  

The health and safety of our community remains our top priority, and the university is deeply committed to doing our part to help mitigate the spread and the very human impact of the coronavirus. So, our actions must fall in step with society’s ability to manage the virus: as we do this important and complex work, we are taking the best advice of our public health colleagues, as well as guidance provided by local, state, and federal officials.  

And as you would expect of us (you won’t be surprised to learn that we are kind of nerdy about things like planning!), we know we must also be prepared to deliver our outstanding educational experience no matter the circumstances come fall. But I promise you this: no matter the mode of delivery, WPI will provide an excellent learning experience, and all the student support that goes with it. Our planning work across multiple scenarios is ongoing, and we will share updates as we have them. 

I am so looking forward to seeing you on our beautiful campus and enjoying so many of our fun and time-honored traditions. Until then, I wish you all good health and good spirits.


Laurie Leshin
Worcester Polytechnic Institute