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Campus Services and Operations During the 2021-22 Winter Recess
December 15, 2021

To: The Campus Community
From: Karen Sisson, Vice President for Administration and Chief Financial Officer
Date: December 15, 2021

As we approach the conclusion of the holiday season and the Institute's special release days, I write to detail for you the reductions in services and operations across campus. This is of increased importance for those in our community who reside on campus, or report to campus for research or other work responsibilities throughout the Institute's winter recess, which runs December 23 through January 2, 2022. 

Security will be normally staffed 24/7 and can be reached at 626-395-4701 for non-emergencies and 626-395-5000 for emergencies. For general information, please refer to Caltech Security's homepage.

COVID-19 surveillance testing will be suspended from December 23 through January 2, with testing resuming on January 3.

  • For faculty, staff, postdoctoral scholars, and students residing off campus:
    • Student Wellness Services will be closed, and there will be no symptomatic testing services provided on campus during this period. Individuals who require symptomatic testing will be referred to their primary care physician or local testing resources. 
    • Please continue to report symptoms and positive test results through the COVID-19 Reporting Application. A member of the COVID Management Team (CMT) will provide guidance by email to symptomatic and exposed individuals.
    • Anyone with symptoms and/or a confirmed case of COVID-19 should not report to campus, and should follow the instructions provided by their physician and/or local public health authorities.
    • The Institute will update the COVID-19 dashboard and send out COVID-19 case reports, if necessary, on December 23, 28, and 30.
  • Students in Institute-owned housing:
    • Please continue to report symptoms and positive test results through the COVID-19 Reporting Application. A member of the COVID Management Team (CMT) will provide guidance by email to symptomatic and exposed individuals.
    • PCR testing for symptomatic students in housing will be available by appointment only. During the weekends, antigen testing will be supported through virtually proctored BinaxNow kits, which will be distributed by Caltech Security.
    • The CMT will conduct contact tracing for confirmed cases of COVID-19.
    • Students living in Institute-owned housing who have a positive test result will be relocated to isolation housing and provided meals by dining services.

The Facilities Service Center will close at 3:30 p.m. on December 22 and reopen January 3. During the Caltech holidays and the special release days, you may request service as follows:

  • For any building-related emergency, call Campus Security at 626-395-5000.
  • For any urgent requests that need attention within 24 hours, call the Service Center at 626-395-4717 and press 9 to be connected to an on-duty facilities operator.
  • For any routine service requests that can wait until the Service Center reopens on January 3, please submit your service request online through the AiM Customer Portal in Access.Caltech. Additional information on facilities services is also included in the Facilities Special Release FAQ.

The Central Utilities Plant is staffed during the holidays and the special release days to maintain utility services and to dispatch personnel for facilities maintenance emergencies. For any facilities emergency, call Campus Security at 626-395-5000. 

Custodial and Grounds Services:

  • Student housing: Custodial Services will provide services to designated isolation areas per COVID–19 protocols, as necessary, and will also provide service to occupied areas on December 23, 28, and 30.
  • General campus buildings: Custodial Services will provide service to restrooms and occupied spaces on December 26, 29, and January 1, or per a pre-arranged schedule.
    • For any urgent needs, such as COVID–19 response, spills, water leaks, or similar events, call the Service Center at 626-395-4717 and press 9 to be connected to an on-duty facilities operator.
  • Exterior trash service: Grounds Services will provide exterior trash service on December 26, 29, and January 1.

The Caltech Post Office and FedEx services will be staffed from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on December 28 through December 30 for postal and FedEx needs. Mail Services and regular campus mail deliveries will close at 4 p.m. on December 22 and reopen on January 3. If mid-holiday campus mail service is required, please contact Mail Services at 626-395-6371 no later than 3 p.m. on December 22 to make arrangements for deliveries or pickups. 

The Faculty Housing Office will be closed during the special release days. All guest arrivals must be scheduled in advance so that the office may arrange for a member of the team to greet guests as part of their one-stop concierge service. 

  • Routine and non-emergency maintenance service will not be available. Central Plant will be staffed to dispatch personnel for maintenance emergencies (e.g. loss of power, broken water pipe). For maintenance emergencies that need attention within 24 hours, call the Service Center at 626-395-4717 and press 9 to be connected to an on-duty facilities operator.

For Environment, Health & Safety (EH&S) services in an emergency, please contact the Caltech Security at 626-395-5000. Security will contact the appropriate Safety Engineers who are on-call 24/7 to respond to an emergency. For all other EH&S related services please refer to the EHS Winter Break Modified Services memo

IMSS will perform scheduled annual year-end activities.

  • The IMSS Help Desk will continue to serve and triage most support requests during the Institute's special release days as needed, and may be contacted by phone at 626-395-3500 or by email at help@caltech.edu.
  • In an emergency, individuals will be directed to use the on-call number, 626-602-0480, or email holidayhelp2021@caltech.edu. 
  • All other IMSS support services will be available on a limited basis.

Dining services and all other administrative support offices will be closed from December 23 until the campus reopens on January 3.

Caltech's athletic/recreational facilities will be open to eligible members for much of the holidays, but with reduced hours. The facilities will be closed on December 25 and 26 and on January 1 and 2.

  • Beginning December 20, these facilities' hours will be 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. weekdays, with the exception of December 24 and 31, when the facilities will close at 6 p.m.
  • Regular hours (6 a.m. until 10 p.m. weekdays; 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. weekends) will resume on Monday, January 3.
  • APER will have limited capacity to sell or renew memberships during the winter recess, due to campus closures.

The Caltech Library's services and hours are posted on their website. Key service hours for the Sherman Fairchild Library are:

  • December 28 through December 30: Service Window for DocuServe, Caltech Library book pick-ups: 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
  • January 2: Service Window for DocuServe, Caltech Library book pick-ups: 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Advancement and Alumni Relations staffing will be limited to those individuals who directly support year-end giving. Individuals interested in making a gift to Caltech are encouraged to do so

  • Online at www.caltech.edu/give;
  • By mail. Checks must be postmarked no later than Friday, December 31, 2021, and mailed to the California Institute of Technology, MC 5-32, 1200 East California Boulevard, Pasadena, Ca 91125;
  • By phone at 1-877-CALTECH (1-877-225-8324).

Individuals seeking information on how to make a gift of stock or securities should call (626) 395-4863.

Business Administration and Finance staffing and operations will be reduced to the greatest extent possible. Critical financial and accounting work will continue through on-call services. Departments and managers have received a separate memo with contact information for designees in procurement, payroll, the controller's office, research administration, and other areas, as well as information on how to make cash deposits.

It is my hope that all of us will find opportunities for rest, recreation, and recharging during the Institute's special release days and may we look forward to a hope-filled New Year.