We are writing to alert you to a significant change in the university’s policy for hiring undergraduates, effective for the fall term. This is not a decision we take lightly; we recognize that it may have an impact on your research and affect the experiences of undergraduates who support you in it. But in light of recent national trends in the public health situation, we feel the responsibility to adopt the following policies for all undergraduate students.
In-person, on-campus employment or research is restricted to students who are enrolled in residence
Because of public health constraints, only students who are enrolled in residence are eligible for in-person, on-campus employment or research, part-time or full-time, paid or unpaid, including laboratory research. Students who are enrolled remotely, on leave, or withdrawn are all ineligible. So are students from other schools, colleges, or universities.
Students enrolled in residence are those who are enrolled and living on campus or, if they are juniors or seniors, in the neighborhoods adjacent to campus or within commuting distance. Keep in mind that in the fall only a very small number of sophomores will receive special permission to enroll in residence; in the spring, only a very small number of first-year students will.
Remote employment or research is available to all students
This restriction applies only to in-person, on-campus employment and research; students enrolled in residence, students enrolled remotely, and students on leave are all eligible for remote employment or research; more details on student employment are available on Yale College’s FAQ.
Rationale for these policies
We recognize that in a typical year there is little constraint on whom you may employ, including students on a leave of absence. But this year, the public health situation requires restricting eligibility to students who will be enrolled in residence. This is for several reasons: because of the lower density mandated by social distancing; because of finite testing capacity that needs to focus on students enrolled in residence; and because unenrolled students working in person on campus may be living unsupervised in New Haven, contributing to the risk of community spread.
We recognize also that many of the students you are considering have the training, skills, and motivation that you are seeking, and when you don’t have other qualified students to mentor, this policy seems counterproductive. Regretfully, we have determined that it is nevertheless necessary for the community’s safety.
We hope that by writing to you now, before the school year starts, we are giving you enough time to adjust your plans so that you have the student support you need for the semester ahead.
Marvin Chun and Tamar Gendler
Dean of Yale College and Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences