Coronavirus Information

This website is dedicated to providing all Penn Staters with the information and resources they will need to succeed as the world navigates the coronavirus pandemic.

Aug. 4 updates

Below is updated information for students, faculty and staff about Penn State's health and safety plans for the fall 2021 semester.

Share Your Vaccination Status

After receiving their final dose, students, faculty and staff are strongly encouraged to share their vaccination status with the University to help inform University operations and COVID-19 management plans.
Learn More

Learn how and where to get tested; how and where to quarantine and isolate; and more about contact tracing at Penn State.

Updated two times a week, visit Penn State's COVID-19 dashboard for trends in testing results for all campus locations.

Find the information you will need to have a successful summer 2021 semester and learn more about future semesters.

Latest updates

Effective immediately (Aug. 4), all students, faculty, staff and visitors — including those who are vaccinated and unvaccinated — are required to wear masks indoors at all campuses. 

In alignment with CDC guidance, community members will be required to wear masks indoors, including in all classrooms — regardless of size — as well as in meeting rooms, common areas in residence halls, and at any indoor events. All individuals on campus will be permitted to eat in designated food service areas, and students living in residence halls will not be required to wear a mask in their living space. In addition, vaccinated employees with individual offices are not required to wear a mask in their personal office. All individuals must wear a face mask while using public transportation and in some additional settings such as when visiting on-campus health care facilities and when conducting in-person research involving human subjects.

At this time, all on-campus activities will continue as regularly scheduled with required indoor masking in place. This shift to masking does not change the return-to-work process for faculty and staff. The new measure applies to all Penn State campuses except the College of Medicine, which has already implemented specific guidance for its community.

Students, faculty, staff members and visitors should plan to wear masks indoors on campus until the current COVID-19 surge subsides; the University will provide an update when masking is no longer required.

Testing plans and requirements for employees who are not vaccinated or have not shared that they are vaccinated with the University will be announced soon. Employees are strongly encouraged to seek testing from their health care provider but will also have access to University provided testing. Employees should upload their information to the Salesforce portal by Aug. 9 or as soon as possible.

Students living in on-campus residence halls on any campus who have not been fully vaccinated and/or have not shared their vaccination status with the University by Aug. 9 will be required to take a COVID-19 test upon arrival to their campus. There will be rapid testing at the University Park, Abington, Altoona, Behrend, Berks and Harrisburg campuses. Other campuses will have PCR test kits. Students with negative test results will be permitted to move into their residence halls. Students who test positive will have the choice of entering on- or near-campus isolation for 10 days or returning home for 10 days.

On-arrival testing also will be available for students living off campus who wish to be tested, but priority testing during move-in dates will be for residence hall students. The University will not accept a negative COVID-19 test result from an off-campus test source for move in. Students who test positive from an off-campus testing source can provide that information to University Health Services (UHS) via MyUHS and are encouraged to do so as soon as the test result is received.

Students living in on-campus residence halls who remain unvaccinated or do not submit their vaccination status to the University by Aug. 9 will be required to test for COVID-19 weekly throughout the semester or until they share with the University that they have been vaccinated.

The University also will conduct regular testing throughout the fall semester of the University’s population of students living off campus who have not shared with the University that they have been vaccinated.

Students who test positive will be referred to isolation and the University’s contact tracing process will be initiated. Unvaccinated students who are identified as close contacts of an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19 will be referred to quarantine. Students must work with their instructor if they must miss class due to illness or quarantine.

There will be significant compliance consequences through Student Conduct for students who do not comply with testing requirements. More information on testing is forthcoming prior to the start of the fall semester.

Throughout the fall semester, vaccines will be available on or near all campuses. At University Park, University Health Services (UHS) will offer appointments for vaccines on Thursdays and Fridays beginning September 2.

UHS is also hosting a vaccine clinic on Aug. 23 and 24 where students can get their first or second dose of the Moderna vaccine. Students can schedule appointments online through UHS.

With the University providing a fully in-person experience this fall, most courses will not have a remote participation option. Students who must enter quarantine or isolation will miss roughly two weeks of in-person classes. As in pre-pandemic years, students must work with their instructor if they must miss class due to illness or quarantine.

Students who are unable to get vaccinated for any reason may have the option to enroll in the World Campus for the semester to avoid having to miss classes in case they were to be impacted by quarantine and isolation. Students interested in exploring this option must speak to their adviser before making the request.

In all cases, faculty are asked to be flexible and work with students who have to miss class for quarantine or isolation.

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