Health safety measures to learn, work

Students in the lab wearing masks

Classrooms, living spaces, dining halls, libraries, workspaces and laboratories were de-densified to allow for safe social distancing. Student occupant capacities in all classrooms were reduced by an estimated 50%, and large classroom occupancy was limited to 150 students for the fall semester. In line with evolving guidance from federal and state health and medical experts and after a full semester with zero classroom transmission, large classroom capacity was raised to 250 students for the spring semester.

Additional spaces for study were created throughout campus, and 16 outdoor study tents and 21 dining tents were installed, adding 1,500 spaces for students and others. Signage and traffic-flow instructions were added in all buildings to remind the campus community of physical distance and hygiene guidelines. To assist here, Purdue ordered and maintains a 90-day supply of critical inventory, including disinfectant wipes, hand sanitizer, 1 million face masks, 150,000 face shields and 2,000 boxes of nitrile gloves.

In classrooms, a safe distance of at least 10 feet was created between instructor and students, and accommodations such as see-thru barriers and face shields were added to protect them.

  • Additional barriers were provided in instructional labs and other spaces where occupancy of more than 50% had to be maintained.
  • All class participants (students and instructors) were asked to correctly and consistently wear face masks, and students were encouraged to face the same direction as much as possible.
  • Classroom protocols, including new entry/exit procedures and additional disinfection and cleaning procedures, were established.

In residence halls, physical distancing protocols, adequate social distancing, new cleaning and sanitation protocols, and revised room assignment plans — particularly for those with health considerations — were enacted. As a result of these guidelines, the number of residential spaces in Purdue residence halls was reduced by an estimated 838 for the school year.

Buildings, common spaces readied for activities

  • Air-handling units were reprogrammed where possible to run 24/7 to increase air filtration cycles and maximize outdoor air percentage.
  • Higher-performance air filters were installed whenever feasible.
  • An expanded disinfection operations team was established to implement enhanced cleaning operations, with a focus on high-touch areas.









Co-Rec reopened with protocols to prevent COVID-19 spread

  • Reservations to use the facility were required and face masks were made mandatory, including during exercise; the one exception was while in the water.
  • Access to the Co-Rec was limited to students, faculty and staff.
    • 14,041 unique users
    • 579,732 total member visits

Risk in campus dining halls minimized

Purdue Dining & Culinary, which serves 7.5 million+ meals in a typical year, served more than 3.4 million meals in the midst of the pandemic. Dining courts began Fall 2020 with a carryout-only model and no indoor seating. By Spring 2021, dine-in seating was gradually phased in for students with meal plans. Over the course of the semester, sit-down dining options were expanded to offer additional options for students to eat together while adhering to Protect Purdue protocols.

  • New social-distanced queueing procedures were put in place, with one-way traffic through the dining locations. Face masks were required as students went through the line but could be removed while they ate.
  • An app was introduced, helping students review menu options and streamlining the queuing process in dining courts.
  • Special dietary needs continued to be met, and student-favorite items were incorporated at each location.
  • Additional retail and on-the-go options were added in the academic areas of campus.
  • Tent seating near each dining location was equipped with sanitizing wipes for students to sanitize surfaces before and after eating or studying, in addition to regular cleaning by Purdue staff.



students having lunch

Marketing and Communications collaborated with Physical Facilities to design, print and install:

  • 50 entrance signs
  • 20 building banners
  • 10 window wraps
  • 150 street banners
  • 130+ sidewalk graphics