Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science
March 17, 2022

Changes to COVID-19 Facial Covering, Gathering Requirements

Dear Members of the Carnegie Mellon Community,

I write today with updates to CMU’s COVID-19 policies related to facial coverings and gatherings. University leadership has been tracking the declining caseloads and pressures on our health care system, both nationally and locally. We have also continued our consultation with experts at CMU University Health Services, the Allegheny Health Network and peer institutions.

With these latest trend lines, and considering our CMU community’s high vaccination and booster compliance, we are able to further relax restrictions at this time. As we transition away from some of these measures, we recognize that these changes will be welcomed by many in our community, while some may be anxious about the shift. The university will continue to monitor COVID-19 developments and assess the latest CDC guidance as we make decisions that are informed by data, science and our local context.
  • As of March 28, facial coverings both indoors and outdoors will be optional for members of our community who are up-to-date with respect to COVID-19 vaccinations (meaning fully vaccinated and boosted when eligible). Those who are not up-to-date on vaccinations must continue to follow mitigation measures, including wearing facial coverings while indoors.
  • There are several circumstances in which individuals will still be required to wear a high-quality, well-fitting facial covering indoors, regardless of vaccination status:
    • Anyone who has tested positive (wear for at least three days following the seven days of isolation).
    • Anyone who has been a close contact of a positive case within 10 days of exposure.
    • Anyone visiting Tartan Testing or University Health Services.
    • Anyone riding a CMU shuttle or other public transportation.
    • Anyone in a university child care setting, including the Cyert Center for Early Education and The Children’s School.
  • Individuals may choose to continue wearing facial coverings for a variety of reasons, and the university community is encouraged to support those who wish to do so. Continue to keep a facial covering with you for times when it will be beneficial. The university provides disposable facial coverings throughout campus, including KN95 masks via vending machines at no cost to students, faculty and staff.
  • In addition, as of March 28, all restrictions on gatherings (both indoor and outdoor) will be lifted. This means that attendees of in-person meetings and student organization and university-sponsored events will be allowed up to 100% of space capacity, and food may be served.

This loosening of requirements follows changes communicated in our campus message from March 4. As a reminder, the Daily Self-Assessment (DSA) is no longer required but remains a recommended mitigation measure available to the entire CMU community, including visitors. One of the most critical actions we can all take is to monitor our symptoms and stay home if you are feeling sick.

In addition, classroom and laboratory notifications of positive cases have ended. And anyone who is a close contact of a COVID-19 positive case and is not up-to-date for vaccines must quarantine for seven days and test negative using an antigen test at the end of that period to be cleared from quarantine.

As has been the case throughout the pandemic, if you have specific concerns regarding your personal situation, we ask that students reach out to their college liaison or housefellow; faculty reach out to their department chair/unit lead; and staff connect with their supervisor or HR business partner.  

Finally, a reminder that Tartan Testing is still required for all Pittsburgh students, faculty and staff who are in the process of becoming fully vaccinated and up-to-date on COVID-19 boosters, who have been exempted from the COVID-19 vaccine or booster requirement, or who have not yet uploaded their vaccination/booster information to the university’s Vaccine Database. It also remains available to all other students, faculty and staff who seek an asymptomatic COVID-19 test.

Thank you for your partnership as we work to keep our community healthy and safe. Best wishes as we move into the second half of spring semester, filled with so many of our unique and meaningful campus traditions.


Daryl Weinert,
Vice President for Operations, Interim Vice President for Research, COVID-19 Coordinator