Memo to Parents and Families, COVID-19 Update

Friday, Jan 29, 2021

OFFICE OF THE DEAN OF THE COLLEGE
OFFICE OF THE VICE PRESIDENT FOR CAMPUS LIFE
Princeton University and Seal
January 27, 2021

Dear Princeton Parents and Families,

This week marks one year since the University’s public health and emergency preparedness teams have been focused on the COVID-19 pandemic. We write now to share information from an update we sent to the campus community as many of our undergraduate students have returned to campus. This email also highlights our ongoing efforts to keep our students, staff, and faculty safe during these challenging times.

We include here a link to a video from Executive Director of Environmental Health and Safety Robin Izzo, who describes how the campus community has come together in the fight against COVID-19. We’re grateful to leaders like Robin and the countless other Princetonians who continue to work tirelessly to welcome and support our undergraduates and to keep us all healthy.

A few key reminders about the University’s move-in process and arrival quarantine protocol:

• Move-in began January 16 and ended Sunday, January 24. Students who arrived on campus first took a COVID-19 test at Jadwin Gym. After the test, undergraduates reported directly to their dorm to move in and begin their arrival quarantine. Just a reminder that undergraduates must remain in their sleeping space, with the exception of using the restroom, until receiving a first negative test result.

• Once a student receives their first negative test, they are allowed to leave their sleeping space to pick up food, or for limited outdoor activity and exercise. These restrictions maintain for an additional period of quarantine, followed by a second COVID-19 test.

• The student’s arrival quarantine period ends once the second test comes back negative. This entire process generally takes between 7 to 10 days from arrival. Students are currently in various stages of our arrival quarantine protocol, depending on their arrival date and their results from the University’s COVID-19 testing protocols.

• During the entire quarantine period, undergraduates are not permitted to go into town or gather in community spaces.

• Undergraduates residing in the dormitories have been provided initial meals by Campus Dining. Once students have received a first negative test result, they pick up meals at their assigned dining services location.

More information about arrival quarantine can be found on the Princeton COVID Resources website, which also includes useful information about the University’s designation as a vaccine distribution point. We don’t yet know when the University will receive vaccine doses from the state for distribution to members of the campus community, but will provide more information as soon as it is available.

In addition to the Spring 2021 website and the COVID Resources site, we encourage students and families to review our information on move-in and housing and dining options.

For questions not answered on any of these websites, the Princeton University COVID Connector Support Line is available by phone at (609) 258-7000 or by email at covidconnector@princeton.edu. The COVID Connector’s regular hours of operations are 8:45 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST Monday through Friday.

Remember that undergraduates living on campus and undergraduates living locally with access to campus must participate in the University’s asymptomatic testing program. So far, more than 6,000 asymptomatic tests have been administered to these students. As of today, January 27, only 20 have been positive for COVID-19, a 0.31% positivity rate. You can check the COVID-19 Dashboard for the latest weekly campus testing results (updated on Tuesdays) and read more about our testing process on the University homepage.

We’re very much looking forward to seeing many of our undergraduates around campus, once their arrival quarantine is complete. Rochelle’s office has established a Community Advocates Program, for which administrators and other University staff have signed up in shifts to be visible and active on campus, encouraging students and others toward the best public health practices. Both of us look forward to our shifts and to saying hello to your student when we see them.

As ever, we hope you and yours are healthy and safe.

Our best,
Dean Jill Dolan
VP W. Rochelle Calhoun