Message on Reopening: Clemson weekend, Winter Session, spring calendar, exit testing

Author: John Slott

Note: Dated communications are archived here for reference, but may not reflect the most up-to-date information available.


Dear Colleagues:

For a number of reasons, the buildup to this Election Day has been unlike any other. Though it may be several days or perhaps longer for all the votes to be tallied, we continue to hope for and work toward unity and civility both within the Notre Dame community and beyond. For your awareness, Campus Ministry is hosting an Election Night prayer service for students on the Bond Quad at 7:30 p.m. tonight as a way to promote healing and unity after what has been a contentious campaign season.

This continues to be a busy time on campus. Here is a brief update.

Big Weekend on the Horizon

We host Clemson in football this Saturday, which will once again bring ESPN College GameDay to our campus. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, GameDay will broadcast from the field inside Notre Dame Stadium without the usual crowd of cheering fans. Though we know this will be the most exciting football weekend of the season at Notre Dame, we are asking students, faculty, and staff members to please follow health and safety protocols whether on or off campus. For the safety of others, anyone selected for surveillance testing this week who does not show up for testing will not be allowed to enter Notre Dame Stadium for the game Saturday.

Winter Session Update

Plans for Winter Session are shaping up nicely. The course offerings, which range from novel one-credit exploration and discovery courses to a number of three-credit courses that fulfill University requirements, will be posted online at on November 9. We also have a variety of internship, research engagement, and community service opportunities in the works. Students will register for Winter Session opportunities as part of regular registration for the spring semester, starting December 2.

Spring Academic Calendar

The University Registrar recently published the calendar for the spring semester and it is shown below:

  • Feb. 3, Wednesday: First day of classes                             
  • Feb. 10, Wednesday: Last date for all class changes at Notre Dame
  • Mar. 2, Tuesday: Mini-break: no classes and no meetings
  • Mar. 29, Monday: Mid-Term deficiency reports submitted through InsideND by 7:00 p.m.
  • Apr. 2, Friday: Good Friday, no classes and no meetings
  • Apr. 7, Wednesday: Last day for course discontinuance at Notre Dame
  • Apr. 21, Wednesday: Mini-break: no classes and no meetings
  • May 11, Tuesday: Last day of classes
  • May 12/13/16,  Wed/Thur/Sun: Reading days
  • May 14/15, Fri/Sat: Final exams
  • May 16, Sunday: Reading day
  • May 17-19, Mon/Tue/Wed: Final exams continue
  • May 21, Friday at noon: final grades due for graduating students
  • May 22-23, Sat/Sun: Commencement
  • May 25, Tuesday: Final grades due for remaining students by 3:45 p.m.

Student Exit Testing

Student exit testing will take place November 9 through 21, with students whose home countries or states require COVID-19 testing for entry receiving first priority for registering for a slot. The University will test all students, either through a scheduled appointment or by mandatory surveillance testing, before the end of the semester. For the protection of others, students who test positive or are close contacts of those who test positive will be cared for in quarantine or isolation at Notre Dame until cleared by University Health Services to depart.

Library Hours for Finals Preparation

Below is the Hesburgh Library Building’s schedule of extended hours for final exams as well as hours for the upcoming Winter Session. To learn more about hours, access, and services, including the holiday closure schedule, please visit the Hesburgh Libraries Service Continuity website.

  • Sunday, November 8 – Thursday, November 19
  • Sunday: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 a.m.
  • Monday to Friday: 7:00 a.m. – 4:00 a.m.
  • Saturday: 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.
  • Friday, November 20: 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Winter Session – November 21 to February 2

  • Every day: 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.  
  • Thanksgiving Holiday: CLOSED November 25-27
  • Christmas Holiday: CLOSED December 24-25
  • New Year Holiday: CLOSED December 31 – January 1

* Notre Dame ID card reader access during open hours starting Monday, November 23.

Closing Thoughts

While the semester has been challenging, we encourage you to take a moment to congratulate yourself on what you have done. Whether faculty, staff, or student, you have worked enormously hard to make a Notre Dame education possible under the most challenging of circumstances. We are so impressed with all of you. Our little friend, Elizabeth Marie, daughter of Victoria St. Martin and Richard Jones, both faculty in the Gallivan Journalism Program, learned how to clap last week just so she could applaud you!



Please remember: 

  • Wear your mask
  • Practice physical distancing
  • Wash your hands regularly
  • Complete your daily health check
  • Show up when selected for surveillance testing


Yours in Notre Dame,

Marie Lynn Miranda, Provost

Shannon Cullinan, Executive Vice President