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Student Testing Program, Booster Requirement, and Isolation Plans

Testing Before Returning to CampusStudent Testing Plan | Mandatory COVID-19 Booster Vaccine | Isolation and Close Contact Management

Testing Before Returning to Campus, and Upon Arrival

Students are strongly encouraged to take a COVID-19 PCR test within 72 hours, or a rapid antigen test within 24 hours, before returning to campus. Students who are able to do so and receive a positive result must not return to campus and must immediately notify Worth Health Center staff by emailing health@swarthmore.edu. The staff there will provide additional instructions on isolation protocols and information on when students are able to return to campus.  

All students will be required to perform a rapid antigen test immediately upon their arrival on campus. Tests will be waiting for students in their assigned rooms within their residence halls. Students who receive a positive test upon arrival must immediately contact the staff at the Worth Health Center by calling the nurse on call at 610-328-8548. Individuals who are reasonably and safely able to return home to isolate will be encouraged to do so. Otherwise, individuals who test positive will be immediately relocated to isolation housing for a minimum of five days. Worth Health Center staff will provide additional information on isolation protocols. 

Student Testing Plan

All Swarthmore students are required to participate in the student testing program. Students will complete testing twice a week using QuickVue at-home COVID-19 test kits. A video demonstration of how to complete this type of over-the-counter rapid test can be viewed here. Details of the testing plan including where to pick up your test kits and when to complete them is outlined below: 

Please note that the College may update testing protocols at any time depending on how the circumstances around COVID-19 evolve. We will do so in consultation with our own and external public health and medical experts. 

If you have any questions, please contact Casey Anderson, CRNP, director, Student Health and Wellness at canders4@swarthmore.edu

Student group 

Test kit pickup

When to take a test

Emergency winter break housing and early return students currently on campus or arriving between now and 1/13

Pick up test kits at the College Post Office during normal operating hours with your OneCard beginning 1/10.  

1/10, 1/13, 1/17, 1/20, 1/24, 1/27, 1/31, 2/3 * 

Student-athletes currently on campus and those arriving between now and 1/17 

Pick up test kits from your coach after making arrangements with them. 

1/10, 1/13, 1/17, 1/20, 1/24, 1/27, 1/31, 2/3 * 

Students arriving on or after 1/15 

Your test kits will be in your dorm room upon arrival. 

The day you arrive on campus, 1/17, 1/20, 1/24, 1/27, 1/31, 2/3 

Students who live off campus

Pick up test kits at the College Post Office during normal operating hours with your OneCard beginning 1/10.

1/17, 1/20, 1/24, 1/27, 1/31, 2/3

*If you are arriving after one of the required test dates, you do NOT have to complete a test until the first Monday or Thursday after you arrive.

If at any time prior to arrival or while on campus you test positive for COVID-19, you are required to contact the Student Health Center staff. Between now and Jan. 18, students should email health@swarthmore.edu to report a positive result and for further instructions. Beginning Jan. 18, the Student Health Center office will be open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET and can be reached at 610-328-8058. The nurse on call will be available after hours and on the weekends throughout the spring semester. 

Mandatory COVID-19 Booster Vaccine

The College is requiring that all students, faculty, and staff members receive a COVID-19 booster vaccine by either Jan. 31 or, if you’re not yet eligible by Jan. 31, within 30 days of becoming eligible for the booster. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has detailed information on when you are eligible to get your booster. If you have already received an exemption from the COVID-19 vaccination approved by the College, you will continue to be exempt from this requirement and do not need to supply additional documentation. 

Experts highly recommend obtaining the booster as soon as you are eligible; however, for those who cannot obtain a booster, the College is partnering with Rite Aid Pharmacy to provide Moderna COVID-19 booster clinics on campus on the following dates: Jan 21, Feb. 23, March 23, and April TBD. More details about the COVID-19 booster clinics will be announced soon. 

Once you receive your COVID-19 booster, please upload your documentation to your student health portal, which can be accessed through MySwarthmore. You must upload a photo of your booster card under “COVID-19 booster” and also enter the date you obtained the booster.

Isolation and Close-Contact Management

We are in the process of updating our isolation-housing protocols to be consistent with the updated CDC guidelines. We will share those details as soon as they’re finalized. Students who test positive for COVID-19 will be required to move to isolation housing and will receive more information from the staff at the Student Health Center. Close-contact notification will be completed via secure messaging through the student health portal. Students will not be notified via phone; however, they will receive a secure message with instructions on how to proceed as a close contact.