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College will institute mandatory COVID-19 testing for students, beginning Aug. 31

SUNY New Paltz’s COVID-19 response team has approved a new, mandatory testing policy for students who are on campus during the fall 2020 semester.

As large universities in other areas of the country experience COVID-19 outbreaks and return to fully remote teaching and learning, we are reminded of the importance of taking every possible precaution to ensure that our own fall semester can proceed safely and uninterrupted. This new mandatory testing policy is being instituted as an additional measure to help ensure the safety of all members of our community.

All students who live on campus or who are attending in-person classes are required to get tested. Options are available for on- or off-campus testing. Tests will be billed to students’ insurance with no out-of-pocket cost to students.

Mandatory testing will begin on Monday, Aug. 31, according to a weekly schedule with students selected for testing based on their housing status. Students will receive multiple notifications to make sure they understand the College’s expectations for their testing.

Please use this link to view the complete mandatory testing schedule.

In week one, Aug. 31 – Sept. 4, students who live in the basement level of any on-campus residence hall, as well as students who live on the fourth floor of Lenape Hall, will be required to get tested for COVID-19.

Students can fulfill the mandatory testing requirement in one of two ways:

  1. On-campus testing during your assigned week: Students can make an appointment to get convenient testing on campus at Awosting Hall, through the Student Health Service’s Testing Registration Link.
    1. Example: If your assigned mandatory testing week is Sept. 21 – 25, you can schedule an on-campus test for that week to satisfy the requirement.
  2. Off-campus testing within the two weeks prior to your assigned week: Students can also make an appointment to get tested off-campus via the Testing Registration Link. However, because these off-campus tests may take longer to return results, students who wish to use the off-campus option must get tested during the two weeks prior to their assigned week.
    1. Example: If your assigned mandatory testing week is Sept. 21 – 25, you can schedule an off-campus test anytime between Sept. 7 – 18, and still satisfy the requirement.

Voluntary on-campus testing continues to be available to any students who want it through the College’s partnership with Enzo Labs, though the new mandatory testing policy and related capacity constraints may require students to make appointments far in advance.

Whether they get tested on or off campus, students are responsible for submitting their test results to the Student Health Service no more than 5 business days after their mandatory testing week – so, if you are required to be tested during the week of Aug. 31 – Sept. 4, you must submit your test results by Friday, Sept. 11.

Please use this link to submit COVID-19 test results to the Student Health Service.

Positive test results should be reported to the Student Health Service immediately by calling 845-257-3400 (use the answering service if after hours). The Student Health Service will provide information on next steps, including isolation, contact tracing and medical support.

We thank all students and community members for their perseverance during an unprecedented time on our campus, and as always, for adopting a “We, not Me” attitude this semester.