Campus Return and Booster Requirements

Dear Students,

Happy New Year! I hope your winter break has been restful and rejuvenating. As we welcome 2022, we are seeing an uptick in cases as the Omicron variant of COVID-19 is now the dominant variant in the US. Omicron is 40% more infectious than the Delta variant. Given that, I write with updates on return to campus and the COVID-19 booster.

Returning to Campus

All students will be able to move back to campus on dates previously communicated. We are excited to have students back in residence and begin the spring semester. All students are strongly recommended to get a negative COVID-19 test within 72hours of arrival to campus.

As I communicated at the end of last semester, all students will be required to test within two days of arrival to campus: Monday, January 17 or Tuesday, January 18 at an SHS testing location. Weekly COVID screening testing will resume for the spring semester. Unvaccinated students will continue to test twice weekly. We will maintain the daily testing schedule by classes:

  • Monday: First-year students test
  • Tuesday: Sophomores test
  • Wednesday: Juniors test
  • Thursday: Seniors and Post-baccs test
  • Friday: Make-up test day

COVID-19 Booster Requirement

In an update from the College on January 3, Interim President Marcus-Newhall announced that the College is requiring the COVID-19 booster by January 31, 2022. Scientific evidence continues to show that COVID-19 vaccines and boosters are effective against the virus and its variants and that they can help to reduce COVID-19 transmission. Booster shots are recommended six months past completing the initial Moderna or Pfizer vaccination and two months past the Johnson & Johnson vaccination.

  • Those who are not eligible to get the booster shot by January 31 must receive a booster within 15 days of becoming eligible. Please review the CDC guidance on boosters. If you are not eligible for the booster by January 31, please email Shawnice Ross no later than January 17 with your eligibility date. Students who previously received an exemption from vaccination are not required to receive the booster.
  • All students are required to upload booster proof to Student Health Services no later than January 31, 2022. Attached is a step-by-step process for uploading proof to SHS.
  • I strongly recommend students do not wait but get the booster before traveling back to campus. Proof of COVID-19 booster should be uploaded immediately. 

Other Mitigating Factors

As we come back together, we must work diligently to minimize COVID-19 exposure. Wear a mask during ALL close interactions with others. Masking is required when indoors at all times except when in a student’s individual residence hall room, suite, or apartment. It is strongly encouraged for all students to wear a mask outside when distancing is not achievable. Encourage your friends to do the same! This is how we take care of each other and our community in efforts to keep our transmission rates low. The CDC and Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LACDPH) in the most recent guidance recommends a surgical mask or higher to guard against transmission. Experts have found that cloth masks do not provide enough protection against the virus.

As we understand it, the Omicron surge of COVID-19 will continue for many weeks. During that time, we ask that all community members limit close contacts and remain vigilant.

  • As a reminder as we return for the spring semester, consistent with current crossover dining guidelines, there will be no in-person 7C events through the week of February 7, pending evaluation of our COVID-19 case trends and student compliance with testing requirements. All in-person events will be Scripps-only students until further communication is provided.
  • Scripps CLORGS will have limited access to spaces, while adhering to masking requirements. We encourage ALL student events to be virtual or outdoors to limit exposure. CLORGS will be expected to continue to work with OSE for event registration and adhere to community COVID-19 guidelines.

As Interim President Marcus-Newhall shared, we will provide further updates after the presidents of the Claremont Colleges meet to discuss the possibility of beginning the semester with courses being taught remotely to best protect the health and safety of our community. This will also address the need for flexibility of our students returning to campus who are navigating airline cancelations and COVID infections and/or exposure. Further updates are forthcoming.

We are a strong community and we must continue to act to protect each other and those in our communities. We will continue our multi-layered approach in the spring semester which includes masking, testing, and vaccination requirements. We will continue to monitor any recommendations and guidance as set forth by the CDC and LACDPH. For more information please visit Scripps Strong.

In Community,

Dean di Bartolo-Beckman