Building Use Policies

Owen Classrooms Usage  

Masks must be worn while in university buildings and including classrooms. The Owen building will be cleaned twice daily by a cleaning crew. The classrooms will have disinfectant cleaning supplies; each student should wipe surfaces before and after they have been in use. Classrooms will be used exclusively for in-person classes.

These are capacities for students only (so for 110 at 25 which means 25 students + 1 faculty member can be in that room).

Note: if you need desks, too, you should double check there are as many desks as there are chairs. John Thorpe can do that for you.

The classroom capacities, which follow current CDC guidelines of 6 feet between occupants, are as follows:

10614 (Chairs only. No tables.)
Library 44
Center Bldg 20032

First and Second Floor Lobbies

In order to decrease the probability of COVID-19 spread and increase the likelihood of continued building use, communal spaces such as the building lobby must be as lightly populated as possible.

To this end, the first-floor lobby furniture has been temporarily removed. Second-floor study tables are available for single occupants. Students, faculty, and staff should not congregate at the tables.

At this time, lobbies will be unavailable for use for gatherings or special events, including Closing Bell.

Student Lounge and Student Lockers

The student lounge and lockers will be decommissioned temporarily and used for furniture storage, as they are too confined to allow physically distanced occupancy. All refrigerators and microwaves will be unavailable for use at this time.

Building Signage and Stairwells

Building signage has been updated to direct traffic flow around the building, including access to stairwells. The purpose is to minimize traffic flow and maximize distance between people.

Courtyard Tent

The Courtyard tent has been temporarily removed and will be reinstalled during Mod 3. Students can still use the courtyard area in the interim. Students should use this outdoor space instead of the Owen lobby if they choose to remain on campus between classes. When using the outdoor tent and other outdoor seating areas, masks should continue to be worn, and 6 feet of physical distance should be maintained.


Restroom usage should ensure physical distancing is achieved. Face masks should be worn in restrooms. Occupants should wait outside the restrooms until physical distancing inside the restroom can be achieved. Avoid touching your face after touching a door handle. Wash with soap or sanitize hands after using the restroom.


To reduce the risk of spread of infection, food and beverage will not be served at Owen. Students bringing food from home should eat outside, either in the tent or elsewhere on campus, keeping a physical distance of 6 feet with others. Faculty and Staff may eat in their own offices but should not eat with others in offices or conference rooms.


The water bottle filling stations in the lobby areas will be disinfected regularly and available for use with a personal water bottle, minimizing contact with the filling station. No one should drink directly from the water fountain.

Library Study Rooms

Library study rooms are currently limited to one person at a time, due to space and airflow. Students’ ability to book a study room through EMS is temporarily unavailable. A protocol and process for booking a study room for single occupancy will be developed shortly.


Faculty have agreed to drastically reduce the need for printing materials.

One copy/print machine, named PRISM, will be available for student use. It is located in the Print Room.

For more information on using the library, click here.


During this time, Vanderbilt is limiting access to the campus to students, faculty, staff, and approved contractors only.


Based on CDC employer guidance, elevator usage should be limited to 2 people at a time. Using stairs whenever possible will assist vertical circulation, given that elevator capacities may be challenged. If you are using the elevator, wear your face mask/covering, and wash your hands or use hand sanitizer with 60% alcohol upon departing the elevator. Custodial crews will be wiping down elevator buttons frequently during the day.