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Holiday Operations - Message to Graduate Students

December 06, 2021

To: Caltech Graduate Students 
From: Kevin Gilmartin, Vice President for Student Affairs and David C. Chan, Dean of Graduate Studies
Date: December 3, 2021
Re: Winter Break 

On November 18, 2021, President Rosenbaum together with Institute leaders, wrote to the community to address holiday travel. We appreciate your compliance over the Thanksgiving holiday, and we look forward to an equally successful travel season this winter. Today, I write to you to confirm the Institute's operational and testing plans for the upcoming winter break to best assist you with your own preparations for the end of the term. 

From December 23, 2021 through January 2, 2022, the campus will be closed in observance of the Institute's special release days, and most on-campus services and administrative offices, including food service will not be available. However, we recognize that some students need to remain on campus to participate in research activities, or because of challenges associated with international travel. Members of the Office of Residential Experience and the Caltech Security groups will be on campus to ensure support for remaining students, and health and safety protocols will continue to be observed. Emergency on-call counseling services will be available, and the Athletic Center will remain open. 

For graduate students living in residence on campus, we ask that you please complete the online Graduate Winter Break Housing form and identify the days you will be staying in Caltech Housing. The deadline to submit your plans for winter break is Wednesday, December 15, 2021 at 12:00 PM (noon).

During the break, the campus' surveillance testing will pause. However, consistent with the health and safety protocols established prior to the beginning of the fall term, all graduate students who live in Caltech Housing must present a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72-hours of the start of the winter term. Students will need to make arrangements in the community for testing, as Student Wellness Services will be closed from December 23, 2021, through January 2, 2022. Information on acceptable testing protocol and additional details on this requirement can be found here.

Students must have their testing records checked in the Central Catalina Recreation room. Staff will be available between 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Monday, January 3, 2022, and Tuesday January 4, 2022. Students who receive a positive result must delay their return to campus and report the result through the COVID-19 Reporting Application.

Failing to complete the required testing before returning to campus, and providing evidence of a negative result, will count as a "strike" according to Caltech's testing protocol.

We appreciate your compliance with our plans to keep the campus and our students safe and supported and we look forward to everyone's safe return for the new term.