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Undergraduate summer quarter plans

In a letter to undergraduates, Provost Persis Drell writes with an update on plans for undergraduate education and housing for the summer quarter.

Dear Stanford undergraduates,

I’m writing with an update on our plans for undergraduate education and housing for the summer quarter.

  • With stable and improving public health conditions, we are moving ahead with our plan to invite this year’s frosh and sophomores to live on campus this summer, along with undergraduates with approved special circumstances who wish to be here.
  • Faculty have been working to assemble a compelling array of educational offerings for this summer. Those of you planning to enroll full time in Summer Quarter 2020-21 can map out a meaningful course schedule that makes the most of a wide array of interesting summer class offerings. Most summer courses will continue to be offered online, though we anticipate that there may be opportunities for students to engage in in-person academic gatherings such as study groups and office hours if conditions allow.
  • The housing portal for summer quarter will open later today for eligible undergraduates who are interested in living on campus. Residential & Dining Enterprises will be in touch with more information.

Many additional details are provided for you below. We also continue planning for our fall quarter, as I wrote earlier this month, and we will continue to provide updates as new information becomes available.


Persis Drell

Key dates

  • Summer housing application process opens April 26, closes May 7
  • Axess opens for summer quarter course enrollment May 23
  • Students receive summer housing assignments May 28
  • Summer quarter move-in dates to be determined (students are encouraged to hold off on booking flights until you have been given an exact move-in date; move-in will be followed by a period of restricted activity through Saturday, June 26)
  • Summer quarter begins June 21
  • Summer quarter ends August 27
  • Autumn quarter begins September 20


Academic planning

  • What courses will be offered during summer quarter? All summer courses offered can be viewed in ExploreCourses. To see course offerings grouped by theme, visit
  • Will classes be held in person during summer quarter? Most classes will be offered virtually. Only a limited number of courses will be offered in person.
  • What are my enrollment options for summer quarter? Your options remain taking classes full time, taking a Flex Term or taking a leave of absence. Here’s more information on these options and summer Flex Term housing and in-person activities.

Important reminder about summer quarter enrollment

  • Effective academic year 2020-21, undergraduate students and coterm students in the undergraduate billing group will have one Flex Term in which they are not required to enroll in classes and in which a leave of absence form is not required. After the Flex Term concludes, the student must either enroll in classes the following terms or apply for a leave of absence if planning not to enroll. If a student fails to enroll or apply for a leave of absence in a following term, the student will be discontinued for no enrollment. Any student who has previously used their Flex Term should plan to enroll full-time or apply for a leave of absence for summer quarter. If you fail to enroll or take a leave of absence, your program will be discontinued.

If you need assistance planning your enrollment options for summer quarter, please consult your Academic Advising Director and the links below:

Note: If you are conferring your undergraduate degree this quarter, you may disregard this reminder.

Please feel free to submit a ServiceNow ticket if you have any questions.

Important reminder for international students

Campus access & housing

  • If I am living off campus, can I come to campus? Currently, students living off campus can enter the arts and athletics zones, and the campus and academic campus zones when seeking medical services. Students living off campus who are engaged in a full-time Stanford-funded Experiential Learning Opportunity (ELO) or Stanford-funded internship and who have applied for and received an exception to come onto campus may do so. However, the current policy restricts these students to the buildings where they do research and does not allow full access of campus. Students who have received an exception due to Stanford-funded employment may also enter the academic campus zone. The university continues to monitor COVID conditions and adjust the campus zones and other safety measures. Subscribe to Health Alerts for the latest information.
  • Is financial assistance available to students with unpaid internships? The BEAM Fellows Stipend is available for unpaid opportunities. Here’s more information on the program, and here are more tips for summer from BEAM Executive Director James Tarbox.
  • What resources are available to help with housing and travel plans? Please continue to check in with the Financial Aid Office. The summer quarter financial aid application and related information are here. In addition, Stanford has introduced a new optional service for student personal travel in collaboration with StudentUniverse. Here’s more information.

Health & safety

  • Is help available for students struggling with loneliness and isolation? We created this new web resource to help address the loneliness, social isolation and longing for connection that you may have experienced over the past year. Awareness about what loneliness is and what causes it can help you identify creative ways to reconnect with others and build resilience.
  • What COVID health and safety measures will be in place during summer quarter? The university continues to monitor COVID conditions and adjust preventive measures as appropriate. Among our expectations for summer quarter are COVID testing, a period of restricted activity, face coverings and physical distancing.
  • What is being done to keep housing and dining safe? Students are assigned to housing at a lower density to facilitate physical distancing. Every student will have a separate sleeping space. Dining hall service is primarily take-out, although with the relaxation of county restrictions there is limited indoor seating as well. Learn more about the CleanDining program here.
  • Will COVID vaccinations be required for summer quarter? Because vaccinations have only recently become widely available, they will not be required for summer quarter. However, we encourage students to get a vaccine as soon as they are able. For students who are seeking vaccination now, please view this recent message about making an appointment, and consult for additional information. COVID vaccination requirements for fall 2021 are described here.
  • Will COVID vaccinations be available on campus? Anyone 16 or older living or working in Santa Clara County is now eligible for a vaccine. Stanford Health Care is providing COVID-19 vaccinations, as are many other Bay Area providers. You’ll find the latest information on Health Alerts.
  • Should I inform Stanford if I’ve been vaccinated? It’s important for students to let us know they’ve been vaccinated for COVID-19 so we can update the immunization section of their student medical record. Sign in to the VadenPatient portal and then follow the instructions to upload a copy of your completed COVID-19 immunization card.
  • What happens if I test positive for COVID after arriving on campus? Vaden Health Services will follow up with the student for clinical care and exposure notification. To coordinate isolation housing and meal delivery service, the name of a student with a positive test will be shared with campus partners, such as Residence Deans (RDs) and Residential & Dining Enterprises (R&DE), on a confidential, need-to-know basis. Meal delivery will be at no charge to students residing on campus. If a student lives in an apartment that has a private bathroom, or lives in couples or families housing, they can quarantine in their apartment. You’ll find more information here.

Campus life

  • What can students do on campus? Assuming current conditions hold, students should be able to continue gathering in small groups; dining or picking up meals at dining halls, Axe & Palm, Coupa and CoHo; participating in Stanford Recreation and Wellness activities; using our outdoor volleyball and basketball courts; and engaging in similar low-risk activities. All of this is contingent on state, county and university public health orders and guidance. We will keep in touch as spring and summer quarters progress.