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FAQ - Campus Facilities and Services

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Student Experience

Housing and Residence Life


Campus Facilities, Operations, and Services

Student Experience

With no activities on campus, how will AU build community?

Experiential learning is central to learning and growth. Throughout the semester, we will work with students to conceptualize and implement community-building initiatives, deploy virtual and immersive experiences, and create opportunities for student mentorship. Although we must continue to modify our behavior, we will still have student organizations, unique speakers, and other opportunities to build community. 

We will augment our curricular offerings with a virtual suite of career-readiness and self-care skill building workshops, courses, and guest speakers. This will include a Skills Development Institute for students to develop market-relevant skills. Programs will feature alumni, staff, faculty, and friends of the university to provide a wide range of perspectives and learning opportunities.

In addition, we will leverage our partnership with Washington, DC, to bring the experience of the city to our community. This will include community-based learning, including special topics such as the 2020 US elections and research in the time of COVID-19. 

How can I learn more about my career options, student jobs and internships?

The Career Center is an online resource center for services related to career advising appointments, education programs, recruiting events and more.

Where can I find more Athletics and Recreation information?

Please visit the Athletics FAQ site for updates and additional information.

Housing and Residence Life

Will any students live on campus?

American University will offer very limited emergency housing to students with demonstrated need. Applications for emergency housing will be made available in the near term.

If I previously registered for on-campus housing but no longer want to live on campus, can I get a full refund?

Student accounts will be adjusted accordingly to reflect the elimination of housing and dining charges. 

How will emergency housing requests be processed?

Students who are interested in emergency housing should send an email to to initiate the process. In the same manner as the spring semester, students will submit an application, the application will be reviewed and an approval or denial will be communicated to the student generally within two business days.

Will those in emergency housing have access to campus services such as dining, the health center, etc.?

Limited food service will be available to students living in emergency housing. The Student Health Center will be open for any students living on campus or in the DC region.

When will housing and dining refunds be processed?

Student accounts will be adjusted accordingly to reflect the elimination of housing and dining charges. 

If I am unable to live on campus, will AU assist students with off-campus housing?  

For students looking for off-campus housing, there are several resource pages. Please check out off-campus housing services and the AU Off-Campus Listing webpage, which has many resources, including roommate listings (free to use).

What will on-campus housing for spring 2021 look like?

All operating decisions will continue to be based on the best available information about the trajectory of the pandemic, the safety of our community, updated scientific and medical guidance, directives from local governments, COVID-19 testing capacity, and the ability to effectively support community health through preventative measures. Decisions regarding the spring 2021 semester housing have not yet been determined. This is a fluid situation, and we will continue to provide updates about our ongoing planning throughout the fall semester.

How is the university handling mail and packages? 

Effective August 3, all packages arriving by courier companies (Amazon Prime, FedEx, DHL, UPS) will be refused and the couriers will return packages to the sender.

All USPS and courier company packages that were received prior to August 3rd will be returned to the sender. In addition, all USPS First Class Letter Mail will also be returned to the sender.

I have more questions about residence life and housing. Where can I get more information?

For more information, please visit Housing and Residence Life.


I had already enrolled in a meal plan. Will I get a refund?

In response to American University’s COVID-19 update on Thursday, July 30th, 2020. The Meal Plan portal for Fall 2020 is now closed. Students who had previously been enrolled in a meal plan will have their meal plans canceled, and all charges reversed from your Eagle Service Account.

If you have already paid your student bill, you will be reimbursed for these costs. Please be aware that if you have other outstanding charges, the reimbursement will first be applied to those charges before any funds are returned.

If you have not yet paid, please do not make payment for either of these. You will not be charged any late fees for charges remaining on your account past 8/1.

Thank you for your patience as we prepare to adjust meal plan enrollments for Fall 2020.  If you have any further questions or related issues, please contact One Card & Dining Services at Just Ask.

What dining services will be available on campus for students living in emergency housing?

Students in emergency housing can continue to use Eaglebucks at select off-campus dining locations. For an updated list of Eaglebucks merchants, please visit Grubhub is now part of the Eaglebucks Network. Please see One Card & Dining Services for more information.

What happens with my meal plan or Eaglebucks since there is no meal plan option?

Students living off-campus will not be able to utilize their meal swipes. Students may continue to use their Eaglebucks. Grubhub is now part of the Eaglebucks Network. Please see One Card & Dining Services for more information.

When will I see the refund on my student account for the meal plan?

We appreciate your patience as we prepare to adjust meal plan enrollments for Fall 2020.  More information on refunds will be available soon in the Finances, Refunds, and Financial Aid section.

Campus Facilities, Operations, and Services

What services will be available on campus?

The Student Health Center will be open for any students living on campus or in the DC region. Other services are being determined and further information will be available in the near term.

The University Library will be online in the fall. We are purchasing more digital serials and books for student research, the librarians will be available for research consultations, and we'll scan articles for students or lend books by mail. For students in the DC metro area, library study space will be available via reservation. For the full list of services, go to:

The American University Washington College of Law (WCL) will have some spaces available in the Pence Law Library and designated other areas of the law school for students who apply and demonstrate a need for physical access to study space. All study spaces will include access to campus Wi-Fi. The law library will offer many services to support our students’ academic success, including remote reference assistance via email, Chat and Zoom, and all students will be able to check out books from the general collection with contactless delivery.

Will I have access to buildings on campus?

Physical access to university facilities are locked and restricted to access with an AU One Card during the fall semester. A few buildings are available to all current students, faculty, and staff with an AU One Card during specified hours.

In addition, some schools and departments have elected to restrict people’s card access to facilities to a select group of administrators to limit the number of people in the buildings. These measures being taken across campus will improve the safety of any occupants who need to access their offices, as well as maintain the security of the buildings and their contents. During this time, university police officers will continue to conduct routine patrols of the buildings across campus and provide updates on any additional university facilities.

If you are planning to visit the campus for any reason, please complete the required daily self-screening questionnaire prior to reporting to AU’s campus.

Where can I get more information about library operations?

For COVID-19 related service changes, please check our library response page. 

What if I’ve already placed an order for in-store pickup at the campus store?

We will be reviewing each of the in-store pickup orders we have received thus far, and will be reaching out to customers to confirm addresses to ship free of charge.

Will I still be able to order from the campus store website at

Yes. We will continually review operations as developments emerge, but we anticipate being able to fulfill online orders indefinitely. However, due to COVID-19 related restrictions, there may be some delays in receiving orders, and we cannot guarantee expedited shipping on orders at this time.

Is the shuttle operating on a normal schedule?

The AU Shuttle will operate on a limited schedule this fall, with morning and afternoon service on the Blue Line Route between Main Campus and the Tenleytown Metro Station and on demand pickup service available at other times through the shuttle app, which you can download from the AU Shuttle website. The Red Route between Spring Valley, the Katzen Arts Center, and the Tenleytown Metro Station will be available on demand only (via the app), and the Green Route between Spring Valley and East Campus will not operate. The AU Shuttle is only for students, faculty, and staff, and face coverings must be worn at all times.

What parking restrictions are in effect on and off campus?

Student permits will be made available for purchase through the myAU portal on August 7. Campus parking enforcement is scheduled to resume on September 1. Faculty and staff should either plan to reenroll in deductions on September 1 or utilize the pay-as-you-go options as outlined on the Parking and Commuter Services website.

Will the U∙PASS Program be available this fall?

Due to the impact of COVID-19 on the DC community and area universities, WMATA is temporarily suspending the U∙PASS Program for the fall 2020 semester. The U∙PASS Program has become part of the AU student experience and we understand this decision affects the transportation options for students residing in the Washington, DC area. We consulted extensively with WMATA in pursuit of a modified program for the fall, but ultimately WMATA decided it was not a viable option.

Previously issued U∙PASS Program cards are no longer valid and new cards will not be issued this fall. Student accounts will be updated accordingly regarding the U∙PASS Program fee.

The university will continue to work with WMATA regarding the status of the U∙PASS Program for the spring 2021 semester. Decisions will be based on the evolving conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic and the operating status of WMATA and the university.

If my office is located in a building with limited access and/or temperature adjustments and I need to conduct my class from there, can I do so?

Yes, you can access individual offices in buildings with adjusted energy use in compliance with the health and safety plan and procedures implemented by your individual department or unit. You should check with your manager or HR representative regarding your specific unit’s building protocols. Faculty intending to come to campus for teaching purposes should fill out the registration form. When visiting any campus facilities, you are required to follow university health and safety protocols and directives, including wearing face coverings and practicing physical distancing. Any day that you come to campus, you must complete the Self-Screening form on the AU Forward portal.

Do I need permission to be on campus? Who do I get it from if I am a faculty member?

Faculty and staff should minimize the time spent on campus to help lower density. You should check with your manager or HR representative for the procedures in place for your specific department or unit. Faculty intending to come to campus for teaching purposes should fill out the registration form, even if you have already completed other forms related to campus activity (e.g., the Return to Research form).

Is my ID card is automatically activated for all buildings?

Your ID card will only work for buildings where you are approved for access.

Student ID cards will provide access to the Don Myers Technology and Innovation Building and Mary Graydon Center (first floor) from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m., 7 days a week. These buildings are for studying and academic use only. The Student Health Center (McCabe Hall and Gray Hall lounge) will be open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Bender Library will be available by appointment onlyAt the Washington College of Law (WCL), the Warren Building and the Yuma Building will be available to students by reservation.

Faculty and staff can access Mary Graydon Center, the SIS building, and the specific building(s) in which they work with their existing ID card. Your ID card will not work for other campus buildings.

Are any buildings available as study spaces for students? Do I need to make reservations?

Yes, students can access the Don Myers Technology and Innovation Building and Mary Graydon Center (first floor) from 8:00 11:00 p.m., 7 days a week for studying. Certain buildings, such as Bender Library and the Warren and Yuma Buildings on the WCL Tenley Campus require reservations. All community members must wear face coverings and practice physical distancing while using any facilities.

If I complete the faculty form for on-campus activity, do I have to wait for approval will before I can use my office?

No, once you complete the form it will be registered, and you can proceed to access your office. Please comply with all health and safety directives when on campus.