Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information & Updates

Important News and Resources for the PAFA Community

PAFA’s first priority is the safety of its community—including students, faculty, and staff—as well as visitors to PAFA’s museum, events, and programs.

We all have a collective responsibility to mitigate the spread of this disease and protect those most vulnerable. This page will serve as a frequently updated resource for the PAFA community to access important information related to COVID-19, including any changes to PAFA’s usual operations. More information from the Office of Institutional Safety and Equity is found here.

Preventative Measures at PAFA

PAFA is taking multiple steps to maintain the safety of our campus community, and is enacting new protocols, including:

  • Initiating on-site health screenings and requiring the wearing of personal protective equipment (PPE). All students, staff and faculty are required to wear face masks inside PAFA's buildings, have their temperature checked upon entering, and must not exhibit any of the symptoms that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have associated with COVID-19.

  • Installing protective Plexiglass screens at entrance desks, and self-cleaning covers for elevator buttons, glass door handles, and push bars.

  • Cleaning the HVAC systems to ensure the circulation of fresh air.

  • Reconfiguring workspaces, classrooms, and studios to facilitate social distancing.

  • Staggering course schedules and limiting class sizes.

  • Limiting access hours to our buildings to allow overnight disinfecting and sanitizing.

  • Placing signage in the elevators and throughout our campus to remind everyone of proper preventative measures.

COVID-19 safety measures and recommendations are evolving as more information becomes available about the status of the pandemic. As such, we will continue to adapt our approach based on the recommendations of health authorities and federal, state, and municipal leaders. 

Jimmie Greeno, our Vice President of Safety and Security, has been named PAFA's Pandemic Safety Officer as per the May 4, 2020 Commonwealth of Pennsylvania COVID-19 Safety Procedures for Businesses, and leads the planning efforts for PAFA's reopening and return to campus. 

COVID-19 Safety Procedures for Businesses

Staying Healthy

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), symptoms of COVID-19 may include fever and respiratory difficulty including cough and shortness of breath. These symptoms may express themselves 2-14 days following exposure to the virus.

The CDC has released general guidelines for the public to follow in order to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases including COVID-19. These include:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

If You Develop Symptoms

The CDC advises that anyone suspecting that they may be infected with COVID-19 practice cautionary self-quarantine and stay home, except to get medical care.

Resources for the PAFA Community


Jefferson Family Medical Associates (JFMA) provides PAFA students with a variety of basic medical services free of charge. To speak to or make an appointment with a JFMA healthcare professional, call (215) 955-7190. Their offices are located at 833 Chestnut Street, Suite 301.

Faculty & Staff

Contact your healthcare provider to discuss options. Those enrolled in PAFA health plans have the option to access care via Doctor on Demand, a telemedicine service. Learn more and access plan information through the Current Employee resource page.

Questions & Contact Information

Members of the PAFA community who have any questions related to COVID-19 and PAFA’s response to the outbreak are encouraged to contact us.

  • Students and their families: Ryan Burton-Romero, Vice President of Enrollment Management and Dean of Students | 215-391-4807 |
  • Faculty: Clint Jukkala, Executive Dean of the College of Fine Arts | (215) 972-7623 |
  • Staff: Lisa Biagas, Vice President of Human Resources and Title IX Coordinator | (215) 972-2038 |
  • All other inquiries:

Expression in Lockdown

About PAFA

Founded in 1805, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts is America's first school and museum of fine arts. A recipient of the National Medal of Arts, PAFA offers undergraduate and graduate programs in the fine arts, innovative exhibitions of historic and contemporary American art, and a world-class collection of American art. PAFA’s esteemed alumni include Mary Cassatt, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, William Glackens, Barkley L. Hendricks, Violet Oakley, Louis Kahn, David Lynch, and Henry Ossawa Tanner.