Editors note: Since the publishing of this article the University of Nevada, Reno has provided new language regarding refunds provided to students living in the residence halls. The university initially had 25 percent of rental payment would be given. Now, “The University will prorate occupancy and provide a refund to all student residents who have been asked to stay home in order to receive remote instruction.” The article has been updated to reflect the new language.

Update: 9:57 p.m. on Friday, March 20

The University of Nevada, Reno announced it will be issuing refunds to students required to leave dorm halls for the rest of the semester amid the COVID-19 global pandemic. In an email sent to residents, the university said they would be modifying their first announcement claiming they would not be giving partial refunds to students except for meal plans.

Because of growing concerns of COVID-19 worldwide, the university shut down all operations on Wednesday, March 18, which includes residence halls. The university building will not be open to the general public.

The amount is determined on the approximated eight weeks spent living in the dorms. The university claims refunds will be given to students within 14 days of identification.

In an update by the university residents will receive a prorate of their rental payment.

“… [E]ffective immediately, the University of Nevada, Reno is modifying its decision about on-campus housing for the remainder of the spring, 2020 term, to protect the health and safety of our student residents and also to reassure their families that we understand the circumstances many of them now face,” the update read.

The university stated all students were required all to leave the residents’ halls on campus from Friday, March 20, to Wednesday, March 25. They originally announced in the emails to residents on Thursday they would not be issuing refunds for the unused housing.

The university received pushback from parents and students. Students created a petition for the university to give partial refunds. Over 8,000 have signed the petition.

The announcement also said students who would not be using their meal plan would receive a refund for the remainder of the semester.

The university also stated that students with extenuating circumstances can request to remain in their residence halls. However, they will be responsible for continuing their rental and meal plan contracts for the remainder of the semester. 

Students may be allowed to leave their belongings in their rooms after spring break. The university stated they must remove the items kept in the room by May 13. If students are unable to move their things out by this day, they are asked to reach out to the Housing Department by May 1.

The university asks students to direct their questions about moving out by calling (775) 784-1113 or emailing housing@unr.edu.

Sarah Strang can be reached at oali@sagebrush.unr.edu or on Twitter @scstrang.