May 20, 2020
SUBJECT: Norwich Student’s Belongings in University Housing
Dear Norwich Students,
First and foremost, I write with best wishes at the end of the semester, hoping all is well as you prepare for the summer months ahead. I am pleased to inform you that Vermont’s colleges and universities have been given permission by the State of Vermont to invite students who are within one-day’s drive of their college or university campus to return to the campus in order to collect their belongings from their rooms. As part of the State of Vermont’s phased reopening plan, all individuals are required to continue observing social distancing measures, minimize group gatherings, and wear face masks when in public.
This State permission is in effect beginning May 27th and an appointment is required in advance of student arrival. Students must depart from campus after all personal belongings have been retrieved. Please note that students who reside out-of-state may not currently stay in lodging in Vermont.
We understand and appreciate that many students will not be able to return for their personal belongings due to distance. To assist our students, we are prepared to offer the following four options:
1) Sign up for a time slot to retrieve your belongings beginning May 27th (Note: we are also happy to facilitate access for a student’s friend to retrieve your possessions with proper authority from the student).
2) Allow Norwich staff to pack and store your belongings until you can return for them when classes begin in the fall, and with appropriate indemnity. This option is free of any cost to our students.
3) Contract with a third-party moving company to have your items packed and shipped to you at your expense.
4) Donate/Recycle/Discard any items remaining in your room.
You must make an election by June 15, 2020. If you fail to select an option by June 15, 2020, the University has the right to consider your belongings Abandoned Property under Title 9, Chapter 137 of Vermont Statutes. Note that while you must make an election by June 15, you have until July 31, 2020 to retrieve your belongings and you may change your election from the above option 1 to any of the other three options at any time.
We will be allowing retrieval of belongings from May 27-July 31 with an approved appointment. Please note that all buildings are locked and you will not have access without an appointment. The State of Vermont is requiring Norwich University staff to manage the flow of returning students to allow for proper social distancing measures, so you will not be allowed into your building outside of your approved time slot.
Students must schedule a move-out date and time with their building manager. You will be sent an email with your contact’s name for your building, if you select this option. If you believe you will need more than four hours, you may schedule both a morning and afternoon time slot as long as there are slots open. Please do not plan to remain longer than your approved times. If you find you are unable to complete your move out within the allotted time, you will be asked to leave and schedule a new time slot on another day. Please note that you will NOT be allowed to remain on campus past your allotted time slot or overnight. Although Vermont intends to begin re-opening its’ economy this week, there is no guarantee that overnight accomodations will be available in Vermont. Please refer to ACCD.Vermont.gov for the most up-to-date travel and business availabilities and restrictions.
If you elect option 2, Student Affairs staff will pack your possessions and store them in an appropriate indoor location after the student signs an appropriate indemnity clause. You will be able to retrieve your belongings at any time over the summer (with an appointment) or when you return in the fall. If you do not return in the fall (or you are a senior), we will contact you again in August about what you would like us to do with your belongings. At that point, the University reserves the right to consider your belongings as abandoned property under Ttitle 9, Chapter 137 of Vermont Statutes.
You may have your belongings packed and shipped by any third party provider at your own expense. Norwich staff will facilitate access once we have been given the appropriate authority by the student to do so.
While Norwich provides no endorsement of any particular company, we will provide information on reputable movers in the area that are willing to accommodate these small moves if you select this option. The indemnity agreement form will allow you to provide the information of whomever you’d like us to grant access. That individual will need to provide either personal or company ID in order to gain access to your belongings.
If you have determined that you no longer need the items that were left behind and would like us to donate, recycle or discard the items, we are happy to do that with no cost to the student through our local partnerships in the community.
Once again, we appreciate the understanding, cooperation and flexibility you’ve demonstrated throughout the semester, and your compliance with the State of Vermont’s phased reopening plan and guidelines. Our collective efforts have been vital in helping reduce the number of COVID-19 cases, and the move-out environment will be much safer for all as a result. Thank you for your ongoing support and understanding in these uncertain and challenging times.
Vice President of Student Affairs and Information Technology