To: Members of the University Community
From: Ka Yee C. Lee, Provost
Subject: Travel Updates Regarding Coronavirus
Date: March 12, 2020
Last night, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. State Department increased the health advisory travel warning to Level 3 for most of Europe, advising people to avoid all nonessential travel to that area. In addition, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is suspending entry of most foreign nationals from Europe to the United States beginning at midnight on Friday, March 13 for 30 days. This does not apply to U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents, or their immediate family members. Screening measures and redirection to specific airlines are likely to follow.
We suggest that all faculty, staff, students, other academic appointees, and postdoctoral researchers currently traveling internationally consider now whether to return to the U.S. if they believe they will be impacted by the new restrictions. Students currently participating in direct enrollment study abroad programs should work directly with the Office of Study Abroad to discuss their plans.
With this change in travel guidelines, the University is extending its precautionary guidance related to travel, which now applies to most of Europe:
  • Any traveler who has returned from a country – now including most of Europe, along with China, South Korea and Iran – with a CDC Level 3 travel health notice should not attend school or work for 14 days after their return date, following CDC and Chicago Department of Public Health guidelines. This self-isolation period also applies to visitors to the University. Individuals should work directly with their departments to facilitate academic, research, or work continuity. Please note, if you have returned from Europe within the last 14 days, this applies to you retroactively.
  • Anyone who has returned from a CDC Level 2 or Level 3 country in the past 14 days and going forward should fill out this simple form with information about their trip. This will help the University work with public health authorities to limit exposure in the event of a positive test case. If the CDC puts in place additional designations for travel to domestic locations, we will communicate and follow those guidelines as well.
While Level 3 is the CDC’s highest alert, please bear in mind that the situation is continuing to change in many countries and cities within the U.S. that have had COVID-19 cases. As announced on Tuesday, the University is suspending all nonessential international and domestic travel through April 15, and we urge similar caution in planning personal travel at this time.
For questions and concerns, please continue to contact


Policy and Administration