Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science
December 19, 2022

Semester Transition; COVID Updates

Dear Members of the Carnegie Mellon Community,

As we approach the end of the calendar year, I want to thank you for your continued help mitigating the spread of COVID-19 on campus. Our collective behavior has enabled this past semester to progress successfully.

While current trends in case numbers and hospitalizations for our area and population are mostly encouraging, the county routinely sees spikes in cases following holiday gatherings, as we did recently after Thanksgiving. With winter break coming and flu and other respiratory illnesses also circulating, there are a few important points to focus on for our collective awareness, health and safety:  

COVID-19 Testing, Reporting

  • Allegheny County is closing the Curative testing sites before the end of December, but Tartan Testing will remain available throughout the 2022-23 academic year.
  • If you have a positive test, please report it to inform our data and to allow us to provide accurate guidance about isolation dates and our spring semester return.


  • Starting January 4, 2023, CMU is adopting the CDC guidelines for isolation periods for individuals who are positive for COVID:
    • Assuming symptoms are resolving, isolation lengths will be reduced from 7 to 5 days.
    • COVID-positive individuals will be able to stop isolating on day 6 if fever-free for at least 24 hours (without medication) and respiratory symptoms are improving.
    • If isolation can be stopped, it is important to wear a high-quality, well-fitting facial covering through Day 10.
    • With two sequential negative tests 48 hours apart, you may remove your facial covering before Day 10.
  • Updates will be made online on January 4.

Facial Coverings

  • We expect facial coverings will remain optional on campus as we start the spring semester. We recommend everyone continue to wear them in higher-risk situations, for example, when riding public transportation.
  • Facial coverings (and test kits) are still available from the vending machines on campus.

I trust everyone to continue to take thoughtful precautions and I have confidence we will have a strong beginning to the next semester. As always, guidance may need to change according to developments, and the answers to common questions can continue to be found on the COVID-19 Updates site.

I wish you all a happy and restorative winter break.


Stan Waddell
Vice President for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer, and COVID-19 Coordinator