An update from REHS for those students who will be moving in to campus this weekend.

Dear Oxy Students:

For those of you who are planning to return to campus beginning Saturday (tomorrow) when the residence halls open for the spring semester, here is some important information that will help you plan and give you a good idea of what to expect.

As President Elam announced on January 6, the start of the spring semester has been delayed one week, until January 24, and the first week of classes, January 24 through January 28, will be remote. We look forward to welcoming you back!


  • We encourage all students to complete and receive results of a PCR test prior to your planned arrival to campus. If you are unable to get a PCR test, please get a rapid antigen COVID test. 

  • The results of these tests can be uploaded into the portal by logging in and clicking on the "Enter My COVID-19 Test Result" button on the main page.

  • Please remember to also upload your booster information in the portal. Find instructions and more information about boosters.

  • Postpone your return if you have tested positive and complete your isolation at home.

  • If you are experiencing COVID-like symptoms at the time you're planning to return, you must test to rule out COVID prior to your return.

  • If you had COVID over the break, you can return if you have completed all required isolation requirements. 


  • You should report to the AGC testing center for testing on the day of your arrival (or the day after if you arrive after hours). Current hours of operation are:

    • Saturday, January 15: 8-11:45 a.m.

    • Sunday, January 16: Closed

    • Monday-Friday, January 17-21: 8 a.m.-3:45 p.m.

    • Saturday, January 22: 8-11:45 a.m.

  • You will have to sequester/quarantine yourself in your room until you get a negative test result from AGC. We expect to have results back within 24 hours of your test submission (Leaving the room to get food or exercise outside is permitted).

  • Card Services will be open over the weekend for any students that need a new Oxy ID, or updated access if you are new to Spring housing, or moved into a new room.  If you are returning back to the same room from the Fall, you do not need to visit Card Services. Hours of operation are:

    • Saturday, 1/15: 11:00am-3:00pm

    • Sunday, 1/16: 11:00am-2:00pm

    • Monday, 1/17: TBD

    • RAs are on-call over the weekend to provide support for lockouts. The RA Duty Number is on the front door of each residence hall.

  • In line with state and county health requirements, we continue to require masking indoors except when eating, drinking or alone in a private work space. Students are not required to wear masks inside their rooms.

  • Consistent with new county guidelines, students, faculty and staff are required to wear surgical grade quality masks or higher quality (N95 or KN95) when indoors and in close proximity with others. Cloth masks are no longer considered effective in these situations. If you need them, masks are available at the AGC testing center.

Ongoing Testing

  • All students will be tested weekly, with certain student cohorts testing twice weekly for at least the first month of the semester. All faculty and staff will also be tested weekly, until further notice. 

Exposure Management: Isolation and Quarantine

  • Oxy has followed and will continue to follow federal, state and local public health guidance. Guidance has changed in recent weeks, and there may be further changes in the coming weeks given current data and the evolving public health evaluation of the pandemic.

  • Oxy is following the current L.A. County guidance of a 5-day isolation period for individuals who test positive. A negative test result is required to exit the isolation period.

  • Occidental has a limited number of isolation units on campus and in adjacent residential properties owned by the College. Should the number of isolation cases exceed that capacity, we have made arrangements for students to isolate in hotel rooms nearby. 

  • We will continue to follow county protocols for close contacts and known exposures.


  • Until you receive a negative result from your return-to-campus COVID test, you must take food to go when getting meals at the Marketplace or Cooler.

  • To start the semester, we have reduced indoor seating capacity in dining halls.

  • Even after students receive a negative result from their return to campus test, we encourage food to be taken to-go to be eaten outside, utilizing tents, picnic tables and many other available outdoor spaces.

  • Spring meals plans begin this Saturday, January 15. The Marketplace will be open Saturday-Monday, with the Cooler opening on Tuesday, January 18. 

Finally, as a reminder, Campus Safety is available 24/7 for any questions or concerns you may experience during your move in: (323) 259-2599


Isaiah Thomas, Residential Education and Housing Services
Marty Sharkey, COVID Operations Group Co-Chair, VP of Communications
James Uhrich, COVID Operations Group Co-Chait, VP/CIO