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April 28, 2022

In Case You Missed It

COVID-19 Requirements for Commencement

In just a few weeks we'll gather to celebrate the many accomplishments of our graduating students. As you prepare for the big day, here are a few things to keep in mind:
  • All participants should be fully vaccinated or have had a negative COVID-19 test result within 24 hours prior to the ceremony. 
  • Guests may be required to complete a symptom screening upon entry.
In addition, masking is strongly recommended, particularly in areas where distancing is not possible or large crowds are present. Please check the UC San Diego Commencement website regularly for the most up-to-date information about COVID-19 requirements.

When Should I Test?

Unless you’ve had a positive COVID-19 test in the past 30 days, we urge you to test whenever:
  • You are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19; or
  • You receive a positive wastewater notification for the building where you live or work.
We also recommend testing:
  • Both before and after attending a large gathering with others who are unmasked (like Sun God Festival); and
  • Before visiting with vulnerable or immunocompromised individuals.

Need a Quick Result? Test in the A.M.

There are more than 20 COVID-19 test kit vending machines available across the campus. Samples are generally picked up at 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. (varies slightly based on location). There is typically a large influx of tests submitted in the afternoon and evening. We encourage campus members to complete their self-administered test before 8 a.m. whenever possible, especially if a quick result is needed. See all vending machine locations.

Town Halls

To see an archive of past town hall events, please visit the Return to Learn website. Future town halls will be announced soon.

Image of three surgical masks lying on a table.

TIME: How Wearing a Mask Can Help Protect You Even If No One Else Wears One

A mask is meant to work in two different ways: by containing the wearer’s germs and filtering out other people’s germs. If two people are wearing masks that trap some of the particles they exhale, there will likely be fewer germs floating around their shared air, and both people will have a lower chance of getting sick. “One of the key things you want to do in infection control is block the source,” says Kimberly Prather, an aerosol expert and chair of atmospheric chemistry at the University of California San Diego. “Never let it in the air in the first place.”

Your Questions Answered

Question: Do I still need to test regularly after a recent COVID-19 infection or positive PCR result?
Answer: If you have recently had COVID-19 and do not have any symptoms, you do not need to conduct asymptomatic testing and are exempt from campus testing requirements for 90 days.
If you become symptomatic again after having COVID-19, please test if it has been more than 30 days since testing positive. 
If your positive test was conducted outside of UC San Diego, students should report it to Student Health Services and employees should report it to the UC San Diego Testing Line at 619-543-8260. If you have new symptoms within 90 days, students should speak with Student Health Services and employees should speak with their health care provider about testing.

Question: How can I learn if there is a positive wastewater signal associated with my building?

Answer: You can use the map on the COVID-19 Daily Dashboard to determine if your building is currently being monitored, and if so, the status of the wastewater signal associated with the building.

Question: If there is a positive wastewater signal in my building, what should I do?

Answer: If you used the restroom in a building associated with a positive wastewater signal on that day, out of an abundance of caution, you should get tested promptly. For more information on testing, visit the Testing and Screening page. If you develop COVID-19 symptoms, please wear a mask and reconsider socializing with others while you await test results.

Question: If my building is associated with a positive wastewater signal, does it mean there is definitely someone infected inside?

Answer: Because multiple buildings can feed wastewater into a single sampler, a positive signal in a building does not necessarily mean there is someone infected inside your building. Further, in some cases individuals who have recovered from their SARS-CoV-2 infection can continue to shed virus into the wastewater for several weeks after they have recovered. These individuals who are no longer infectious can, in some circumstances, contribute to a positive wastewater signal.
If you have specific questions or would like to submit feedback about the Return to Learn program, please email
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