While COVID-19 is no longer a public health emergency, neither the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) nor the World Health Organization (WHO) have declared the pandemic over. Columbia College plans to continue providing a vibrant campus experience while remaining prepared for the changing nature of the virus.
The college continues to encourage members of the campus community to be up to date on COVID-19 vaccines and boosters.
Testing for COVID-19
- Students are encouraged to keep a supply of rapid antigen test kits on hand.
- Testing is recommended for anyone experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.
- Positive home tests should be reported to Columbia College using the contact information below.
If you test positive for COVID-19
Columbia College follows CDC Guidelines in regards to Isolation procedures.
- Regardless of vaccination status, students who test positive for COVID-19 should stay home/in their dorm room, notify Columbia College and isolate for five days. Return to class/work on Day 6 (To calculate your five-day isolation period, Day 0 is your first day of symptoms. Day 1 is the first full day after your symptoms developed). An isolation calculator is available on the CDC website.
- If you have an asymptomatic positive test, the day you test positive is considered Day 0.
- End isolation after five full days if you are fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication and your symptoms have improved.
- Continue to wear a high-quality well-fitting mask around others at home and in public for five additional days (Day 6 through Day 10) after the end of your five-day isolation period.
- Upon notification by the student, Columbia College will send an isolation instruction letter with isolation dates. Students may provide their isolation instruction letter to faculty/instructors. If symptoms persist or worsen, the isolation time period may change.
Students will need to work with Residential Life staff to determine isolation housing. Isolation options may include:
- Return home for the duration of isolation and attend classes virtually;
- Isolation in place. Roommates of infected individuals may choose to relocate to temporary housing. Roommates should be aware of the risks of sharing living space with an infected individual. Roommates who choose to stay with an infected or exposed individual may be asked to sign an informed consent. Ultimately, Residential Life staff will work in conjunction with Student Wellbeing Services staff to make the final determination about whether students are able to isolate in place.
- Students exposed to COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status, should wear a high-quality, well-fitting mask around others, including at home, indoors or in public, for 10 days and get tested no earlier than five days after the last known exposure. If symptoms develop, stay home, notify Student Wellbeing Services, and get tested.
- Students who are sick and suspect they may have COVID-19 but do not yet have a positive test should stay home, notify Student Wellbeing Services.
- Regardless of vaccination status, students with ongoing household exposure, which includes roommates who choose to stay with an infected individual, should wear a high-quality, well-fitting mask while around others. This includes at home, indoors or in public until 10 days after the infected individual’s isolation ends. If no symptoms develop, students with ongoing exposure should get tested no earlier than five days after the end of isolation of the infected individual. If symptoms develop at any time, stay home, notify Student Wellbeing and get tested. For positive test results, follow isolation guidelines.