cross country runners wearing masks
COVID-19 Student Testing Dashboard 

Catholic University will resume updates to the testing dashboard in late January upon the start of the spring 2021 semester. View the final fall 2020 testing dashboard showing the total number of student tests reported and positive cases identified.  

Frequently Asked Questions

Student Quarantine Reminders

Jan. 25, 2021

As a reminder, through Sunday, Feb. 7, ALL students arriving in Washington, D.C., to study at Catholic University will be quarantined in order to comply with the District of Columbia mandate for those students arriving from high risk areas.

(An exception to this quarantine timeline is the law school, which began classes earlier in January and will resume in-person classes on Monday, Jan 25. The Law Library will be open starting Jan. 25, but only to students of the Columbus School of Law.)

In order to maximize the effectiveness of the quarantine and support of the health and safety for everyone on campus, the University decided it best to require all resident-students to quarantine. This will provide the very best conditions for the start of the Spring semester. 

Students who are residing off campus and who recently traveled should remain in quarantine in their residence for 14 days from their return to D.C. Read more about the District’s travel requirements.

Until Feb. 8, non-resident students will not be permitted to visit campus unless they have an appointment with Student Health Services or the Counseling Center (except for law students visiting the law school and those who have meal plans who should ONLY come to pick up their meals as they are directed). 

Campus facilities including the library, computer labs, and Pryzbyla Center will be closed to student visitors until Monday, Feb. 8. (The library will have curbside pick up available.)  

The Pryzbyla Center is closed to student visitors in general (students should not go there to congregate or study) but is open for meal pickup for students who have meal plans. Students should please observe social distancing signage. 

Any student who becomes ill during that time should contact Student Health Services (202-319-5744) to schedule a visit. Note: Health Services will only be accepting patients who call ahead for screening. 

Additionally, anyone returning from international travel is required to follow the current CDC recommendation of a 14-day quarantine.

Starting on February 8, all students will have access to the campus, though often with conditions such as reserved time slots, advance notice, and limitations on capacity. Updates will be communicated via emails, the COVID Updates page, and this FAQ for students

Prior to coming to campus, students should complete student COVID training online and the daily online symptom checker; students should not come to campus if they are experiencing any symptoms of COVID and should contact Student Health Services.

Faculty and staff are not under general quarantine and should continue to operate as they have been instructed by their supervisors. However, faculty and staff should NOT schedule any in-person meetings with students before Monday, Feb. 8. If an employee has recently returned from travel, please review your specific situation with your supervisor or Employee Relations. Read more about the District’s travel requirements.

Vaccine Information

Jan. 14, 2021

The University is not a location authorized for distribution of the vaccine. Members should consult the sites below for guidance. Please note that eligibility for the vaccine is generally determined based on residence, though for some individuals, such as first responders and other emergency personnel, it can also be based on where you work. Right now, the District does not have a specific eligibility category for people who work in higher education, but all members of the community should be alert to the categories that they might be a part of (such as age) that would make them eligible. 

  • Washington, D.C.: D.C. Health has announced that District of Columbia residents who are age 65 and older will be able to schedule a vaccine appointment starting the week of Jan. 11. Register for email updates from D.C. Health here.
  • Maryland: Maryland has not announced their plan for registration for individuals other than healthcare workers. Governor Hogan recently announced that vaccination for patients in some high-risk groups will not begin in Maryland until later in January. Residents who are signed up for the state’s emergency text alerts will get a text message each time the state starts vaccinating a new group. To sign up, text "MdReady" to 898211.
  • Virginia: Virginia has not announced their plan for registration for individuals other than healthcare workers. You can locate the state's vaccine plan here.

Catholic Athletics Intends to Offer Spring Semester Competition

Jan. 11, 2021

In conjunction with today's Landmark Conference announcement, Catholic Athletics intends to attempt to offer its student-athletes opportunities for competition throughout the spring semester.

The Landmark Conference Presidents' Council has endorsed a plan to conduct collegiate competition during the 2021 spring semester. As consistent with all decisions at the conference level, the safety and well-being of student-athletes remains the primary goal of the Landmark Conference.

In light of the varied rates of COVID-19 spread and the differences in legal restrictions across the jurisdictions where the Conference plays, the Presidents have proposed that Conference activities occur only among member schools that are willing and able to compete. They also agree that participating schools should refrain from playing if they pose or face a danger of spreading the virus.

Read the full story on the Athletics website.

Spring 2021 Reminders

Jan. 11, 2021

Dear Students,

I hope this email finds you and your families well and that you are enjoying your break. As we prepare for the spring semester there are a few reminders that I want to share with you.

Request for Remote Instruction

Students who are requesting to remain home and participate in fully remote instruction for Spring 2021 should complete this form.  After your request has been reviewed, you will receive an email from the Office of the Dean of Students (undergraduate students) or your Academic Dean's Office (graduate students) regarding your request. 

Note that some courses will be offered, "in-person" which is reserved for cases in which the course content makes it impossible to have fully remote participation. If you see that one of your courses is listed in this category, but you are considering studying remotely this spring, please consult with the professor for the course to see if remote participation is possible and if not then consult with your academic advisor about postponing the course in question until a later semester.

Updating Local Address and Cellphone Number

Students residing off-campus in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area should ensure that their local address and cellphone number are updated in Cardinal Station.  Follow these steps to update this information:

  1. Log into Cardinal Students and select the Profile tile.
  2. Select the Addresses option (for local address) or Contact Details (for phone) from the left-hand menu.
  3. Hover over and select the item you wish to edit.
  4. Make any needed edits and then select the Save button.
  5. Repeat steps 3-4 to update any additional addresses that need edited.

COVID Training and Daily Health Checker

All students who are taking in-person classes or who are living in Washington, DC should complete this COVID-19 training program available at prior to January 24, 2021.  This training session is designed to provide you with information about University protocols and expectations related to the pandemic.   This training will be supplemented throughout the semester with updated guidance and policy statements. 

Beginning on January 18, students will receive a request via email each morning to complete the health checker.  As a reminder, students living in Washington, D.C., (whether on or off campus) and any student who lives outside of D.C. (but is coming to campus) should complete the health checker each day. In addition to helping monitor your own health, completing the health checker allows the University to identify students who should be tested for COVID-19.  

We look forward to the start of the semester.  Please contact with any questions.

Kathryn Jennings
Associate Vice President for Student Engagement

Changes to Zoom Cloud Recordings

Jan. 11, 2021

As we move to the beginning of the spring 2021 semester, the University is quickly approaching our storage limit with Zoom. Therefore, in order to accommodate the upcoming semester's courses, lectures, and events, we will need to remove all Zoom Cloud recordings made prior to January 1, 2021, with deletion currently scheduled for Friday, January 15, 2021.

Before this deletion occurs, and if you want to save your recordings from the past year, I encourage you to download your Zoom Cloud recordings and archive them to your Cardinal Google Drive. Directions for this downloading and storage process can be found at the following Technology Services website.

In the future, the deletion of all Zoom Cloud recordings will take place one week after final grades are due for a given semester, so please plan accordingly moving forward.

Board of Trustees Resolution of Commendation

Dec. 16, 2020

In a resolution of commendation, the Board of Trustees of The Catholic University of America has expressed its gratitude to the students, faculty, and staff of Catholic University for the response to the coronavirus crisis.

Read the full resolution here

Student Services and Schedules

Dec. 3, 2020

Catholic University students who live near campus will continue to have access to the following services until the University closes on Friday, Dec. 18, at 5 p.m.

Students are reminded that if they traveled over the Thanksgiving break, the District of Columbia recommends they quarantine for 14 days or obtain COVID-19 testing within 3 to 5 days of their return to D.C. They should continue to self-monitor for the two weeks following travel. The Student Testing Center is open and available to students. 

  • Libraries: Curb service will be moved to inside the main entrance. Study space in Mullen can be reserved through the end of the semester (and even in the intersession with reduced hours). Visit the library website for more information. 
  • Bookstore: Barnes & Noble at Catholic University is operating on reduced holiday hours: Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. They will be closed Dec. 25 to Jan. 3. 
  • Computer Labs: Labs will be available for printing and other needs.
  • Pryzbyla Center: Will be open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; but dining services are closed until the spring semester. 
  • Cardinal Cupboard: Any student or staff members experiencing food insecurity can contact the food pantry at  
  • Student Health Center: Services and testing will be available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., through Friday, Dec. 11. Please call 202-319-5744 to arrange an appointment. 
  • Counseling Center: The Counseling Center will continue to operate virtually for scheduled sessions. Visit their website for more information. 
  • Masses: There will be no daily Mass for the rest of the semester on campus. Sunday Mass will be livestreamed on Dec. 6 and 13. Students and alumni living in the area may attend these Masses (as long as they follow the District guidance above if they traveled recently). Those planning to attend in person should sign up in the Nest

The Kane Fitness Center will be closed until Feb. 8. Online fitness resources and classes are available at

The DuFour Center and all athletic facilities (indoor and outdoor) are closed for the remainder of the semester. Updates on the Spring Semester will be posted online when they are available.

Landmark Competition Will Not Begin Before February 5

Dec. 2, 2020

The Landmark Conference Presidents' Council announced Thursday that sports competition in the spring semester will begin no earlier than Friday, Feb. 5 and that it will not conduct Indoor Track & Field Championships.

The group continues to meet diligently while they consider the most up-to-date information and data as it pertains to the COVID-19 pandemic and a safe return to play for their collegiate sport programs.

The council has agreed to reconvene during the first week in January to allow for more fact-gathering and the latest regional and local recommendations and guidelines to be considered when making a final decision regarding the resumption of athletics.

Read the full story on the Athletics website

Updates on Spring 2021

Nov. 18, 2020

President John Garvey sent a letter to the campus community on Wednesday, Nov. 18, outlining the University's plan for the spring semester. 

Read President Garvey's letter here

Updated Travel, COVID Testing, and Work from Home Guidance

Nov. 13, 2020

Especially as we approach the holiday season, the University wants to ensure that our community members are aware of the latest guidance (effective Nov. 9) provided by the Government of the District of Columbia. 

Mayor Muriel Bowser asks that District residents returning to the District after traveling to any place other than Maryland, Virginia, or a low-risk state (currently Hawaii and Vermont) or country must either:

  • Limit daily activities and self-monitor for symptoms 14 days upon their return or
  • Limit daily activities until they get tested for COVID-19 (within 3-5 days after their return) and receive a negative result.

“Limiting daily activities” does not apply to going to work, obtaining medical care, food, or pharmaceuticals. During those 14 days, a person who has recently traveled should check their temperature twice daily (for any reading higher than 100.4) and self monitor for symptoms: sore throat, congestion, cough, headache, and loss of taste or smell. If they do exhibit any symptoms, the person should cease any activity involving close contact with others and contact a medical professional. 

District guidelines suggest that those traveling should:

  • Choose destinations with COVID-19 transmission rates in mind
  • Maintain physical distance from non-household members at all times
  • Avoid mass gatherings (more than 50 people)
  • Wear masks whenever possible if in the presence of non-household members
  • Follow other recommended good hygiene habits (hand washing, avoid touching your face, etc.)

Residents of Maryland and Virginia are exempt from Mayor Bowser’s guidelines. Residents of these jurisdictions should check for the current guidance in their states and counties, because many of them have changed in recent days (e.g., Maryland reducing indoor gatherings to 25).

If you confirm that you have been in close contact with someone who tested positive, please do not report to campus for at least 14 days. “Close contact” is defined as spending at least 15 minutes within 6 feet of someone over a 24 hour period. The incubation period for COVID-19 is 14 days, so even after one negative test, a person who has been exposed should remain in quarantine, continue to monitor their symptoms, and retest, if possible. 

Testing — Err on the Side of Caution
Dr. Loretta Staudt, director of Student Health Services (SHS), wishes to remind the community to please exercise caution if you experience ANY (even mild) COVID symptoms. The majority of positive cases identified in the student body this semester have been in individuals who experienced relatively minor symptoms (sore throat, congestion, headache).

Especially as individuals prepare to travel for the holidays, they should remain vigilant and contact SHS (if they are a student) or their primary care physician to report any symptoms.

SHS hours of operation and contact information can be found on its website. Faculty and staff can find additional resources on Human Resources’ webpage

COVID Work from Home Policy
The University’s COVID Work from Home (C-WFH) program will be extended through the end of March. The C-WFH program is designed to allow those employees whose work activities can be completed from home to work from home for up to 2-3 days per week. The University is continually tracking the District of Columbia's current guidance to ensure the safety for our employees, and will adjust the policy as needed as the pandemic evolves. 

Any questions or concerns related to these topics should be directed to


University Reaches Tentative Plan for Spring Semester — Open as Safely as Possible

Oct. 27, 2020

Read the President's Letter

Updates on COVID-19 Testing and Notification Processes

Sept. 23, 2020

Dear University Community,

Now that we are several weeks into the semester, we have seen the effectiveness of both the quarantine period and the reduced density on campus. Now, after several hundred student tests, we have had and will continue to have students on campus who test positive for COVID-19. We expected this to happen and many of you have seen or experienced the processes that are in place to both support those who become ill, and to slow the spread of the virus. 

Read the full announcement



On-Campus Testing for Students and Other Health Measures

Aug. 17, 2020

The University has contracted with Ascension Healthcare through Providence Health Services to host a COVID-19 testing site on campus for students. It is available for all students, whether they live on campus or off campus. 

Students who experience a fever or other symptoms of COVID-19 should call Student Health Services. A healthcare professional will discuss their symptoms with them, and may schedule them for testing.

Read the full story.

District Clarifies Mask Mandate

July 22, 2020

Mayor Muriel Bowser issued Mayor’s Order 2020-080 to clarify and extend requirements related to wearing masks indoors and outdoors in Washington, DC.

Under the new Mayor’s Order on masks, people must wear a mask when they leave their homes if they are likely to come into contact with another person for more than a fleeting moment. Exceptions are listed in the Mayor’s Order, and common exceptions include: children under the age of three; a person who is in an enclosed office that no one else is allowed to enter; a person who is actively eating or drinking; and a person who is engaged in vigorous outdoor exercise and is maintaining social distance of at least six feet from other people. The full Mayor’s Order on masks can be found at

Catholic University Is Committed to International Students (UPDATED)

July 15, 2020

The  Office of International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) is relieved to hear that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has agreed to  rescind the July 6, 2020 policy that threatened international students with deportation if their U.S. institutions turned to online-only instruction. ISSS will continue to communicate with and update our international students as further DHS guidance is available pertaining to the Fall 2020 semester and course registration.

As University President John Garvey and Provost Aaron Dominguez said in a letter last week:

"Every year Catholic University is home to hundreds of international students from all over the world. They are here to learn, to conduct research and to contribute to our global community. We embrace their cultural diversity, and we welcome the unique gifts and perspectives they bring to the academic enterprise. We support policies that welcome international students to our country, and incorporate them into our community. We stand in solidarity with the international students at Catholic University, and across the nation." 

McMahon Classroom Upgrade for Hybrid Learning

June 16, 2020

McMahon Hall 112 (the Fulton Sheen Classroom) has received updated technology this summer and is being rearranged by facilities staff to demonstrate how learning will be supported in the fall while focusing on the health and safety of faculty and students in the ongoing COVID pandemic.

Read the full story.

COVID-19 Working Groups

May 28, 2020

Focused working groups have been meeting since the beginning of March to discuss the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on the University. There is at least one group meeting each day of the week to examine the current situation. 

  • Three times a week, the Roadmap 20/21 Task Force meets virtually. This was the first working group formed in March, and is led by Lawrence Morris, chief of staff in the President’s office. The Provost and vice presidents were invited to select members of their teams to be a part of this group. Up to 20 people participate each day in a meeting that starts with Dr. Loretta Staudt, director of Student Health Services, updating the group on the health crisis. Within the group are multiple representatives of academics, admission and enrollment services, advancement and finance, communications, human resources, student life, facilities and environmental health and safety.
  • As the pandemic has developed, sub committees and task forces have formed to evaluate possible changes to academics (instruction and learning, research, classroom configuration and sanitation, and the Library), student affairs, facilities, and return-to-campus measures. The return to campus group is focusing on topics ranging from the placement of additional hand sanitizer around campus and how to encourage proper social distancing and mask usage to how to resume in-person Mass on campus.

The working groups continue to monitor the latest guidance being presented by the CDC and District of Columbia. Reopening measures will meet (if not exceed) those safety precautions. 

Employees who have specific questions or concerns about the pandemic and its effects on the University should contact their direct supervisor so that concerns can be forwarded to vice presidents and/or their representatives on the working groups. They can also send questions or suggestions to

  • Health and Safety Flyers

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  • Travel Restrictions

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  • Updates Regarding Catholic University Athletics

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  • Responding to the Novel Coronavirus Archive

    Previous updates issued by Catholic University on the COVID-19 outbreak.

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  • Campus Reopening

    Catholic University's fall reopening plan includes information about returning to campus for the 2020-2021 academic year. It provides COVID-related updates for students, parents, faculty, and staff.

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  • COVID-19 Student Testing Dashboard

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