Return to Campus Guide

UMB Together: Safely masked students, faculty, and researchers working on campus

UMB is taking actions in light of COVID-19 with the goal of providing a safe working and learning environment for our students, faculty, staff, and visitors.

Physical Distancing & Capacity Guidelines

Updated May 19, 2021

Physical Distancing in the Workplace

Physical distancing in workplace environments is just as important as it is in the broader community.

Using distance to reduce the risk of infection is the basic concept behind physical distancing. This can be accomplished in the workplace to mitigate the risk of community spread of COVID-19. Various instructional signs are posted throughout the UMB campus, and recommendations provided should be followed — elevator capacity, conference room/lecture hall capacity, etc.

Physical distancing as outlined in this section may be particularly challenging in some work environments, but it should still be attempted as much as possible. Physical distancing protocols will follow CDC guidelines, which include:

  • Staying apart from others at the CDC-recommended distance
  • Eliminating contact with others (e.g., handshaking, hugging)
  • Avoiding touching common surfaces (where possible) and ensuring frequent washing of hands if it’s not
    possible to avoid touching surfaces
  • Allowing only infrequent and intermittent passing within the CDC-recommended physical distancing
  • Encouraging employees to take the stairs
  • Maintaining physical distancing during breaks, especially when face coverings are removed to eat or
    drink, and at shift start and end times
  • Staggering break times and work schedules
  • Limiting in-person meetings and maintaining physical distancing
  • Taking separate vehicles
  • Minimizing the number of people in a work area at the same time

Indoor events up to 50 people and outdoor events up to 100 people in size are permitted during summer 2021 as long as all UMB COVID-19 health and safety practices are followed. This includes being able to maintain 6 feet of physical distancing during the event.

Any event with more than 10 people requires that the event holder keep a list of attendees for contact tracing. Events larger than the size limits noted above must be approved by a UMB dean or senior vice president.

An email to COVID-Recovery is required when 25 visitors (or more) will attend an event at any one time.

For Summer 2021, food is allowable as long as it's pre-packaged for individual consumption. Buffets or shared food are not allowed. People must be at least 6 feet apart while eating.

Building Entries and Exits

Building entry requires the display of a UMB-issued identification badge (e.g., One Card). Upon entry to any UMB building, all One Card badge holders must swipe their badges with the black Lenel security device, which will allow for building capacity to be monitored and support contact tracing efforts on campus.

Hand sanitizer stations will be provided at the entries/exits of each high-traffic building as determined by Facilities and Operations.

Employees should avoid congregating in close proximity during entry into buildings and should maintain physical distancing in line with current recommendations.

Visitors without a One Card are permitted as required for educational, research, and business operations, and must comply with the UMB Visitors Guidance.

Effective June 1, major changes to the Visitors Guidance includes:

  • Testing and training are no longer health and safety requirements.
  • An email to COVID-Recovery is required when 25 visitors (or more) will attend an event at any one time.

This summer, an electronic visitor management system intended to replace the Visitor Acknowledgment
Form will be piloted before being installed campuswide. Visitors entering campus buildings will check in
using a LobbyGuard system at the main entrances near the security guard desks. The kiosk is a small tablet
computer with a scanner and printer that will allow a visitor to scan a driver’s license, get their picture taken,
and generate a temporary badge via the printer.

Conference Rooms

Conference rooms can be used in accordance with the guidance listed in the Events section of this document above. If proper physical distancing cannot be maintained, the use of conference rooms should be restricted. If conference rooms must be used, the blue Point-of-Use cart cleaning and disinfecting supplies should be provided.

Schools and departments operating in leased and/or multi-tenant facilities will need to work with building management to ensure implementation of the above protocols.

Lunch Rooms and Break Rooms

Lunch rooms and break rooms will have signage to indicate maximum capacity, whether for eating or utility

When break room capacity has been met, employees will be encouraged to use available indoor common spaces (conference rooms, etc.) as long as physical distancing requirements can be met and space is available. To assist with keeping lunch rooms and break rooms clean, the use of blue Point of Use carts is encouraged.

In areas where break rooms are not available, employees will be encouraged to eat at their assigned desk or cubicle. It also is encouraged that lunch and break times be staggered to avoid the overcrowding of common lunch rooms or break rooms.


There will be no capacity limits for bathrooms, but UMB advises that all students, faculty, and staff practice patience and civility and follow current physical distancing guidelines when using UMB bathrooms, in addition to using recommended hygiene practices such as thorough handwashing.


All elevators on campus, including those within the UMB-managed garages, will be outfitted with signs that indicate the maximum capacity to comply with physical distancing standards. Patience and civility are requested from those who must wait for an open elevator. It is encouraged that individuals use the stairs when possible. Hand sanitizer stations will be provided at the exits of each high-traffic elevator as determined by Facilities and Operations.

UMB has reduced physical distancing in elevators to 3 feet in the summer and will be posted accordingly.

Water Fountains

Water fountains will be equipped with signage that requires the use of personal containers (cups) when
getting water.

Configuring Spaces for Learning and Work

Space requirements for learning and workplaces — including classrooms, offices, conference rooms, lounges, information study spaces, and libraries — will vary depending on the primary activity taking place in the space. Regardless of the activity, these spaces must be configured in accordance with current physical distancing requirements.

Classrooms can reduce from 6 feet to 3 feet of physical distancing for the fall semester, provided that face coverings are required at that time.

UMB COVID-19 Vaccination Mandate

Posted May 18, 2021

Vaccines must be completed two weeks before you are due back to school or work at UMB before the start of the fall semester.

To meet the terms of the University System of Maryland’s fall vaccination mandate, UMB employees and students should plan to have their final vaccine dose by Aug. 2.

In order to meet the terms of the mandate, most UMB employees and students should plan to have their first shot of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine by July 1, if you haven’t already.

UMB will comply with all federal and state laws in granting appropriate exemptions for medical or religious reasons. If you have questions about whether it is safe for you to receive a vaccination, please speak with your physician.

Students may discuss this with providers at Student Health, or they can contact UMB Student Affairs with questions about the vaccine mandate. If you have been vaccinated, please register your vaccination. I hope that you have started to review the Return to Campus Guide that offers additional guidance for our phased return to campus beginning next month.  

Know Before You Go

COVID-19 Vaccine

The University System of Maryland (USM) has mandated that all eligible faculty, students, and staff who will be on campus in fall 2021 must be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Face Coverings

To avoid any confusion about the rules for wearing face coverings on campus, Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) prepared this guide.

UMB SAFE on Campus: Screen Your Symptoms

All UMB faculty, staff, and students must register and complete the UMB Symptom Assessment For Employees (and Students) on Campus (SAFE on Campus) daily health screening prior to coming to campus.

Testing, Hygiene, and Health

Information about COVID-19 testing requirements, campus cleaning and hygiene, and other health-related matters.

COVID-19 Signage Toolbox

Provides printable signage options to give visual cues about new COVID-19-related behavioral guidelines and expectations for the UMB community.

COVID-19 Management Portal

Approve or deny COVID-19 health information sharing through CRISP; upload COVID-19 vaccination documentation if not using CRISP; schedule vaccination appointment at UMB Vaccination Clinic; and request vaccination exemption.

Latest Guidance

Letter: UMB Face Covering and Physical Distancing Requirements for Vaccinated and Unvaccinated Students, Faculty, and Staff

Posted June 17, 2021

Effective Thursday, July 1, UMB’s Policy Requiring Use of Face Coverings will no longer require fully vaccinated people to wear face coverings and/or practice physical distancing while on UMB’s campus. UMB’s campus is defined as all property owned, leased, or operated by UMB. However, students, faculty, and staff who are not fully vaccinated, even if they have received a medical or religious exemption from receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, must continue to wear a mask in accordance with the policy Read more.

Does UMB have a physical distancing requirement and room capacity limit for fall didactic classes?

Posted June 17, 2021

No. For the fall semester, UMB does not have a physical distancing requirement or COVID-related room capacity limit. Schools can plan around that expectation. Fire marshal room capacity still applies. Read more.

UMB Dining Options Summer 2021 Update

Posted June 16, 2021

Need a snack or lunch now that you're back on campus? Here are a few reminders about campus food services: Read more.

Fully Vaccinated? You Might Be Exempt from SAFE on Campus

Posted June 09, 2021

Starting Monday, June 14, if UMB has confirmation that you are fully vaccinated, you will no longer receive the SAFE on Campus daily symptom monitoring emails 14 days after your final dose. Students at the School of Medicine and School of Nursing will continue to use the daily symptom monitoring process at practicums. Read more.

New Guidance on Research Activities Effective June 21, 2021

Posted June 03, 2021

We are pleased to announce the following updates regarding research operations effective Monday, June 21, 2021: Read more.

When will URecFit reopen?

Updated May 28, 2021

URecFit will reopen to current UMB students and UMB graduates of December 2019, May 2020, December 2020, and May 2021 on June 1, 2021. If COVID-19 metrics continue to improve and capacity allows, we anticipate reopening to all other eligible members July 1. Read more.

What safety precautions are URecFit and Wellness putting in place when the facility reopens?

Updated May 25, 2021

Reopening and staying open will be a team effort. In addition to UMB, state, and CDC requirements, here are things to expect when the facility reopens: Read more.

International Students and Scholars Return to Campus Guidance

Posted May 21, 2021

A summary of FAQs and other information for international scholars and students at UMB. Read more.

Visitors COVID-19 Acknowledgment Form

Updated May 19, 2021

Complete the UMB Visitors COVID Acknowledgment Form for scheduled visitors to UMB in accordance with the COVID-19 Visitors Guidance. Read more.

COVID-19 Visitors Guidance

Updated May 19, 2021

This guidance provides the framework for a visitor accessing UMB-owned or -occupied facilities to ensure consistency with health and safety practices of the University. The guidance is intended to satisfy academic semester(s) fall 2020, with extension into spring 2021 as necessary. Read more.

Letter: Vaccination Timeline and Appointments Available for Family and Friends

Posted May 18, 2021

There finally seems to be light at the end of the tunnel, and with lower COVID-19 positivity rates and increased vaccinations, we are able to resume more in-person activities. I am grateful to all of you in the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) community for helping us get to this point, and I look forward to being back on campus with you soon. Read more.

UMB COVID-19 Management Portal

Posted May 18, 2021

The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) Recovery Task Force has introduced a new one-stop online shop for submitting COVID-19 information including vaccination information, vaccination scheduling, vaccination exemption, and CRISP authorization. Read more.

Who is able to see my request for a medical or religious exemption from a COVID-19 vaccine?

Posted May 14, 2021

Requests for exemptions and any documents provided will be kept confidential and shared only with those university employees who have a need to know. Read more.

UMB Policy Requiring Use of Face Coverings

Updated May 13, 2021

It is established that face coverings are vital to control of the spread of COVID-19. UMB adopts this policy in the interest of minimizing risk of spread of COVID-19among students, faculty, staff, clients,and others coming to the campus. Read more.

What restrictions are in place for domestic out-of-state travel, including personal travel?

Updated May 13, 2021

On June 1, 2021, UMB will permit the resumption of domestic business travel. UMB travelers must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 in accordance with USM’s vaccination policy and follow current CDC domestic travel guidance. Currently this requires fully vaccinated (for COVID-19) domestic travelers self-monitor for symptoms, wear a mask, and take other COVID-19 safety precautions when traveling domestically. Read more.

Additional UMB Travel Guidance

Updated May 13, 2021

UMB continues to strongly advise people to refrain from non-essential travel. Read more.

When do I have to be vaccinated by before I am due back to school or work at UMB?

Updated May 13, 2021

Vaccines must be completed two weeks before you are due back to school or work at UMB. In order to meet the terms of the mandate, most UMB employees and students should plan to have their first shot of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine by July 1, if you haven’t already. Read more.

Letter: Return to Campus Update: May 6, 2021

Posted May 06, 2021

We have been through a lot together. I’m so proud of each and every member of the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) community for your commitment to keeping yourselves and each other safe over this past year. I know that commitment will continue as many of us return to campus. Read more.

Lyft On-Demand Shuttle and Lyft Ride Smart at UMB

Posted May 06, 2021

Lyft On-Demand Shuttle and Lyft Ride Smart at UMB are available to all current UMB students, faculty, and staff through July 30. You must opt-in to participate. Read more.

Receiving Packages and Mail

Posted May 06, 2021

According to the CDC, handling mail and/or packages is not likely to be the primary means of contracting or spreading COVID-19. However, it is still important to follow good hygiene practices when handling mail. When receiving a package or mail: Read more.

Building Ventilation

Posted May 06, 2021

UMB is committed to minimizing COVID-19 risk for building users by regularly inspecting air handling units, replacing filters, and ensuring that air handlers are functioning as designed. UMB also will continue to monitor and react to federal, state, public health, and industry standard heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) guidelines to manage and mitigate risk where possible. Read more.

Personal Protective Equipment

Posted May 06, 2021

Employees may be required to wear other personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves, gowns, or respiratory protection due to the nature of their work. Read more.

Return to Campus - Parking Updates

Posted May 03, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the parking and transportation industry in several ways, and the University of Maryland, Baltimore’s (UMB) Parking and Transportation Services (PTS) has been impacted. Fortunately, the return to campus promises to bring a bit of light to each and every one of us. With the return to campus imminent, PTS wanted to highlight several operational changes: Read more.

USM Chancellor Jay A. Perman Issues COVID Vaccination Mandate for USM Students, Faculty, and Staff

Posted April 23, 2021

For this reason, I’m requiring that all eligible students, faculty, and staff who will be on our Maryland campuses this fall be vaccinated against COVID. Of course, we’ll comply with all federal and state laws in granting appropriate exemptions for medical or religious reasons. Read more.

Operations and Maintenance (Maintenance Shops) Response

Updated April 21, 2021

At the onset of the pandemic, to reduce the number of staff on campus, Operations and Maintenance prioritized the maintenance of building systems and emergency response requests. Read more.

Posted April 16, 2021

The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) Vaccination Clinic is open to serve the UMB community and select partners to Get The Vaccine. The UMB Vaccination Clinic can provide vaccinations for the Native American population, tribal or Native American agency employees, and Baltimore City residents and workers. Read more.

Does the disinfectant used by EVS custodians have to sit (dwell) on a surface to be effective?

Posted April 08, 2021

The recommended dwell time for disinfectant used by EVS is under five minutes. EVS asks for your patience and understanding when restrooms and other areas are closed for cleaning. Read more.

Essential International Travel Request Process

Posted March 16, 2021

Before completing the Essential International Travel Request Form, please review the Word version of the form first, particularly if this is your first time using the *NEW* Essential International Travel Request Form. Once you have all of the information ready to process, then return to this page and proceed to the electronic form. Read more.

Letter: UMB Safe Ride Is Back in Service on March 1

Posted February 25, 2021

Therefore, I am proud to announce that we are relaunching our Safe Ride program March 1, with your health and safety as my top priority. Read more.

COVID-19 Status of Operation and Telework Policy

Updated January 27, 2021

The University's Telework Policy (VII-6.11(A)) outlines ordinary rules and expectations surrounding telework. This COVID-19 Status of Operation and Telework Policy states temporary guidance and flexibilities related to telework in direct response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This Policy also offers temporary guidance related to the use of accrued leave. This Policy is effective commencing July 27, 2020 and will be in effect for an unspecified period of time while the University continues to address Read more.

Recommendations for Cloth Face Coverings

Posted December 03, 2020

UMB Recovery Task Force offers tips on masks regarding fabric, layers, and fit. Read more.

How to Use Point-of-Use Cleaning Kits

Posted September 02, 2020

Following these steps will help create a safe, healthy, and efficient way to clean surfaces on campus. Keep in mind to clean areas and surfaces before use. Read more.

Why shouldn’t I bring my own cleaning products to use on campus?

Posted September 02, 2020

It is recommended that you do not bring your own cleaning products to campus. Read more.

What is the difference between cleaning and disinfecting?

Posted June 12, 2020

Cleaning refers to the removal of germs, dirt, and impurities from surfaces. Disinfecting refers to using chemicals to kill germs on surfaces. Read more.

How Buildings Are Cleaned and Disinfected

Posted June 12, 2020

In addition to routine custodial cleaning, the University has implemented an enhanced cleaning protocol and frequency to clean and disinfect common areas and commonly touched surfaces in occupied buildings. Read more.

Researchers Safety Plan

Posted June 12, 2020

All researchers should review the COVID-19 Research Safety Plan which provides safety practices for conducting research during restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more.

Enhanced Hygiene

Posted June 12, 2020

Guidelines for enhanced personal hygiene on campus Read more.