UM Updates Schedule for Fall Semester

MISSOULA – University of Montana officials have announced an earlier start and end to the fall semester 2020 as a mitigation measure in response to novel coronavirus.

Fall semester at UM will start Wednesday, Aug. 19, and conclude Wednesday, Nov. 25, the day before Thanksgiving.

“We are committed to keeping our students, faculty and staff as safe and healthy as possible,” UM President Seth Bodnar said. “The intention behind the adjusted dates is to eliminate the need to return to campus after Thanksgiving to complete the semester. We believe this will reduce the potential for travel-related COVID exposure.”

Students will return to campus for the start of spring semester 2021 on Monday, Jan. 11.

Bodnar said the change to an earlier start came after consulting with a broad group of campus leaders representing academic affairs, student services and University operations. Officials still are working on important considerations such as whether winter-session classes will be offered between fall and spring semesters and how Commencement ceremonies will be handled in the fall and spring.

“We still have some decisions to make around the new semester dates,” Bodnar said, “and we will ensure that information is communicated promptly to enable our students and employees to plan accordingly.”

Updates and other information are available on the UM Coronavirus Fall 2020 webpage at


Contact: Paula Short, UM spokesperson, Strategic Communications associate vice president, 405-830-6098,