Alexandra Boursican ’23
Vice President of Student Success and Enrollment Management Joe DiChristina and Vice President of Finance and Dan Hitchell announced Trinity’s plan to discontinue PCR surveillance testing in an email to the community Monday, Apr. 4.
The College will continue to provide testing at the Memorial Field House for students, faculty, and staff who become symptomatic or wish to receive a rapid test. Those who test at home and receive a positive result are required to notify the College, follow the proper health and safety protocols, and quarantine if needed. Students are expected to communicate with Health Services and employees and let HR and their managers know. The testing center will remain open from 9:30am-3:30pm.
DiChristina did not respond to the Tripod’s request for comment.
The COVID-19 Steering Committee’s decision to end surveillance testing follows its Mar. 11 announcement that the College would relax the mask mandate, gathering restrictions, and testing program.
Masking in many on-campus spaces—including the library, Ferris Athletic Center, dining halls, recreational areas, and living spaces—have been optional since Mar. 14. Indoor masking is still currently required in all classrooms, laboratories, studios, and instructional spaces during scheduled classes. Masks are also mandated in all healthcare facilities, indoor and athletic and performance art events, and gatherings that include external audiences.
In addition, masks are required in any campus space where signage indicates that masking is required and in individual offices and group meetings when requested by the hosts or participants.
Many campus gathering restrictions have been adjusted to accommodate for more in-person interactions. According to the revised gathering guidelines, many non-academic spaces—including Greek houses, the Ferris Athletic Center, the Austin Arts Center, and student organization meetings—can operate at full capacity under various conditions. Campus meeting spaces—such as Mather Hall and Hamlin Hall—can host lectures and presentations at full capacity and supervised social gatherings at 75% capacity. Dining halls will be operating at full capacity with the grab-and-go option still available for students.
Despite these changes, DiChristina and Hitchell noted in their Apr. 4 email that the College would readjust their testing policy “should cases on campus begin to increase or COVID cases begin to rise locally or nationally again.” Prior to the College’s recent decision to end surveillance testing, Trinity mandated testing for all employees and students through Mar. 18.
Individuals who were granted medical or religious exemptions are still required to test weekly through the remainder of the semester. Students were also required to complete two rapid tests upon returning from spring break from Mar. 18 through Apr. 1. Dichristina and Hitchell did not respond to the Tripod’s request for comment.