Howard U. cancels in-person homecoming this year, plans to go virtual

On Howard University’s campus, alumni, family and friends gather after the game to celebrate Howard’s 93rd annual homecoming on Saturday, Oct. 22, 2016 in Washington, D.C. (Photo by Cheriss May/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Howard University will not hold its annual homecoming celebration in person in 2020. Instead, it will be held virtually as part of the historically black university’s reopening plan for the fall.

Howard routinely draws thousands of students, alumni and visitors for the event but concerns over the coronavirus pandemic led to the move to a virtual space. President Wayne A. I. Frederick told Anna-Lysa Gayle on WHUT having homecoming on campus would put too many people at risk.

“That is not something that I think we can do safely because of the nature of it,” he said.

Howard announced in February its homecoming would be Oct. 10-18, with the homecoming football game against Delaware State played Saturday, Oct. 17.

Specific plans for the virtual celebration have not yet been announced.

Last week, Frederick said Howard, like other D.C. universities, will use a “hybrid” system of in-person and virtual learning in the fall.

Students at Howard will be required to complete a COVID-19 test within seven days before arriving on campus, and will be given personal protective equipment, such as face coverings and sanitizer. Large gatherings will continue to be prohibited.

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Looking for more information? D.C., Maryland and Virginia are each releasing more data every day. Visit their official sites here: Virginia | Maryland | D.C.

Rob Woodfork

Rob Woodfork is WTOP's Senior Sports Content Producer, which includes duties as producer and host of the DC Sports Huddle, nightside sports anchor and sports columnist on

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