Your safety and that of other students, faculty and staff can only be achieved if we all follow the required safety measures.
Covid-19 Health Guidelines
Face masks are required to be worn indoors on campuses in counties identified by the CDC as having high COVID-19 Community Levels. You can check the University Status page for a list of campus locations that require masking indoors.
Individuals are expected to review campus policies and procedures and local municipal ordinances related to COVID-19 mitigation. Per CDC guidance, individual municipalities, businesses and other organizations may set their own masking and physical distancing expectations.
Employees at Penn State who work in their own individual offices on mask-optional campuses may request that visitors wear masks while in their private offices, and faculty may request that their students wear masks during classes. The University asks that community members cooperate respectfully with these requests. At this time, the College of Medicine will continue the mask mandate in alignment with Penn State Health to support patient care.
All individuals are also encouraged to practice appropriate hygiene, including:
- Coughing sneezing into your elbow, not your hands
- Refraining from touching your face
- Washing hands often, for a minimum of 20 seconds, with soap and water – or using hand sanitizer after coming into contact with common surfaces and after using the bathroom.
Complete details are available in a release from the University on Masking and Social Distancing Policies.
Daily Symptom Checks
Penn State students can also complete a daily symptom checker to self-screen for potential COVID-19 symptoms before returning to campus. Students enrolled for in-person courses or scheduled to be present at on-campus facilities will need to sign in with their Penn State ID to complete the daily student COVID-19 symptom checker through the Penn State Go app.
It is strongly encouraged that all students complete the symptom checker every morning before leaving their homes, riding public transportation, and arriving on campus premises.
The Penn State Go app is available to download in the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.
Testing for COVID-19
In March, 2022, the University suspended its required testing for non-vaccinated students and staff and that remains in effect.
- Employees who test positive must enter isolation and will not be permitted to return to on-site work until they have completed an isolation period that meets Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines. COVID-19-positive staff employees will be expected to use accrued sick, vacation or personal time (if available) or be placed on an unpaid leave status for the absence to cover any time off until they are released to return to work by Penn State Occupational Medicine. Employees may work remotely during the isolation period (with approval from their manager) if their symptoms are mild and their position allows. Contact tracing staff will communicate with all individuals identified as close contacts, regardless of their vaccination status. Instructors, faculty members and researchers are expected to work with their academic unit leader to determine how to best cover their responsibilities if they test positive and enter an isolation period.
- Staff who are represented by a union should check with their Human Resources representative to determine testing obligations. Employees who have tested positive through the University in the last 90 days for COVID-19 and have informed Occupational Medicine are omitted from testing.
Sanitizing measures for classrooms, equipment and furniture
Classrooms will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized each day. Also, hand sanitizing stations will be in each classroom for use before and after classes and sanitary wipes will also be provided so students can wipe down their desk and chair/workspace before and after their use.
FDA approved disinfectants for Covid 19 will be used for daily cleaning and disinfecting of frequently touched surfaces.
Changes in product and processes include:
- Restroom Cleaning: Custodial will clean and disinfect restrooms once daily, M-F. Surfaces disinfected will include toilets and toilet handles, urinals and urinal handles, sinks and sink faucets, paper/soap/feminine hygiene dispensers, floors, stall door handles, and restroom entrance handles and push plates using approved FDA disinfectants. Microfiber cloths and mops will be used with approved disinfectant to wipe all surfaces and mop floors.
- Exterior Building Entrances: Custodial will disinfect exterior door handles and push plates, and frequently touched surfaces like ADA automatic door opening buttons using a Microfiber cloth with disinfectants once daily, M-F.
- Interior of Buildings: All desks, podiums, conference tables, interior doorknobs, interior door push plates, handrails, light switches, and ALL other surfaces identified as high touch areas will be cleaned and disinfected using a Microfiber cloth and approved disinfectants.
- Bottle Fill/Hydration Stations and Water Fountains: Bottle fill stations and water fountains will be disinfected using a Microfiber cloth and approved disinfectants once daily, M-F.
- Classrooms: Classrooms will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized each day. Also, hand-sanitizing stations will be in each classroom for use before and after classes and sanitary wipes will also be provided so students can wipe down their desk and chair/workspace before their use.