Health & Safety Update

An update from President Elam on campus operations and important health and safety information as we enter the Spring 2021 semester.

Dear Occidental Community,

With classes starting next Tuesday, I wanted to take this opportunity to update you on campus operations and share some important health and safety information. This week, around 100 international and other students who have successfully petitioned for on-campus housing are moving into res halls, and our new twice weekly testing regimen for everyone living and working on campus gets underway. I want to thank the many people, both staff and faculty, whose hard work in planning and preparing for this semester have gotten us to the point.

As you know, the recent surge of the virus has reached record heights in Southern California. By continuing to operate remotely and continuing to observe our health and safety protocols, we have managed thus far to keep our case count low. If we are to continue to do so, staying vigilant is more important than ever. This means:

  • Wearing a mask at all times in all public spaces, indoors or outdoors.

  • Staying at least 6 feet from other individuals at all times, not gathering in groups, and staying out of crowded spaces.

  • Frequently washing your hands or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

  • Using the College-sponsored monitoring app to complete daily symptom and temperature screenings before arriving on campus, and staying home if feeling unwell.

  • Complying with all testing requirements.

  • Alerting Emmons Wellness Center and observing all isolation and quarantine requirements if you test positive for COVD-19.

  • Completing all required health and safety training.  

  • Actively monitoring all College communications about COVID conditions and changing protocols.

In support of these protocols, Oxy's COVID Operations Team has developed a Community Compact that outlines the values on which we depend to keep our community safe and healthy. Staff and faculty received an email earlier today from HR/EverFi that provides access to a mandatory training module that must be completed by January 21. The training and workplace guidelines are similar to what you reviewed and approved in the fall, with minor updates reflecting the new spring semester testing protocol. Students are bound by Student Code of Conduct and a new Student Compact. They will be reviewing the compact through the Clearance process.

As we start the new semester, it's important to take a moment to refamiliarize ourselves with these values. Continuing vigilance now is the best possible expression of our culture of care.

Very best,
President Elam