COVID-19 and the Census

Census Bureau COVID-19 Guidance

The key takeaways are:

        • Students should still be counted in their campus community whether they are living in on or off campus housing.  Per the Census Bureau’s residence criteria, in most cases students living away from home at school should be counted at school, even if they are temporarily elsewhere due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
        • For Off Campus Students, continue to encourage them to fill out the Census online at  They do not need to have their letter or their Census ID number to fill out the form online.  The Census website can identify them with their off-campus address.  They should communicate with roommates to designate one responder.
        • For on-campus counts, Campus officials should continue to work with the Census Bureau Groups Quarters contact person.  Schools that chose to do student self-response are being given the option to switch to eResponse methodology.  Your Census contact should be reaching out to you but you should also feel free to contact them directly.  If you don’t know who that is, I am happy to try to help.
        • The Early Nonresponse Followup Operation (when census takers knock on doors) has been pushed back from April 9th to April 23rd.  At this point we don’t know how many students will be back in their campus residences at that time so please continue to encourage off campus students to respond online.

What Campuses Should be doing:

            • Use your normal online platforms to continue to remind students about the Census and their responsibility.  The Census Bureau has some useful graphics: Educator Outreach Material
            • The Census Open Innovation Lab (COIL) has created a number of social media friendly memes, videos, and posts that can be used for different audiences.
            • Ask Student Leaders to use TikTok, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and any other social media platform to get out the Census message.
            • Does your President or Football Coach or a popular professor have a large following on social media?  Reach out to those trusted, popular voices to get the message to students.
            • Remind all faculty and staff that are interacting with students online that the Census is still happening.  Ask them to put a Census message in their signature or syllabi.

Campus Compact will continue to update this page as more information about campus responses to the Census amid the COVID-19 response become available.  If you have anything resources to add, please email