Pre-arrival and upon arrival protocol for joining (or re-joining!) campus this fall:

Daily Wellness Check-In banner with the test on a mobile phone.

PRE-ARRIVAL: Stay home, stay healthy

All students should complete the daily pre-arrival Wellness Check-In beginning at least 14 days before arriving on campus. All students are strongly encouraged to follow public-health guidance, limit activities, and stay close to home for the 14 days prior to joining campus life.

Students who have opted for 100% remote learning through the fall semester and will not be coming to campus for any reason are excused from the Wellness Check-In requirements.

UPON ARRIVAL: Quarantine, test, quarantine (QTQ)

Testing all PLU community members at different points throughout the fall is an important component of our mitigation measures; however, the following student groups have been identified for initial testing:

  • All students living in a PLU residence hall
  • All students not living in a PLU residence hall, who plan to be on campus for any reason.

When a student (identified on the initial testing list above) arrives at their on-campus residence or their off-campus home, we are requiring three days of self-quarantine followed by testing for COVID-19, and another period of up to five days of quarantine while waiting for results.

Students who have opted for 100% remote learning through the fall semester and will not be coming to campus for any reason are excused from testing and quarantine requirements.

Student employee expectations to quarantine, test, and quarantine (QTQ)

Students who have been living or working on campus this summer and have been observing public-health guidance do not have to self-quarantine. If they are identified as being within the criteria above (live in a residence hall, have traveled by air, or have engaged in high-risk behavior), they are required to be tested.

It is an expectation that student workers who have been identified on the initial testing list above will quarantine-test-quarantine (QTQ) before starting work. Student employees should communicate with their supervisors to amend their work schedules for the required period of QTQ, until test results are available.

Consistent with public-health directives, students in on-campus roles that are considered to be critical to infrastructure (Campus Safety, Information & Technology Services, Campus Restaurants, Facilities, Mail Services, etc.) may be allowed to continue work as they wait for their test results, provided that they are not sick with COVID-19-like symptoms. Check in with your supervisor.

Students who are testing and who have off-campus employment, internships, or other equivalent commitments are encouraged to communicate with their employers/supervisors to determine whether they can be released from that experience for the period of testing and quarantine. Click here for a letter from PLU, expressing the importance of this arrival protocol, that can be shared with your supervisor.

How will COVID-19 testing work at PLU?

In partnership with the Tacoma–Pierce County Health Department and the county Emergency Management team, PLU will be testing on campus on the dates below.

Residence hall early arrivals only
August 18
August 25
September 1
All other students (who live in a residence hall, have traveled by air, or have engaged in high-risk behavior)September 8
September 9

If you are a PLU student who plans to participate in any activity on campus this fall and have not participated in COVID testing and submitted your results to PLU’s Health Center then you should sign up for a testing time frame during the two large scale testing events that will take place on campus next Tuesday, September 8, and Wednesday, September 9.

These free COVID-19 mobile testing events are part of our strategy to care for our campus community this fall and are important to mitigating the spread of COVID. Please sign up for a testing time frame here. Testing on both September 8th and 9th will be located on PLU’s golf course on lower campus and will be offered between 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. We expect these events to be well-attended, so your pre-registration is necessary and appreciated.

You will most likely experience a short wait no matter what time you select.
Pierce County Emergency Services (PCES) will not begin testing until 10:00 a.m.

Please see the map below for the golf course location:

Map of the testing location. at the old golf course

Once your form is submitted, please take a moment to read the message that will appear on your screen. Please do not delete this message as you will need to reference it again when you submit your test results.

As a reminder, you must remain in quarantine until you receive your test results and are provided directions about next steps. Please refer to the Quarantine Q&A on the Residential Life COVID information page for more details about this process.

For questions about testing requirements that are not addressed in the Quarantine Q&A, please contact the Health Center at 253-535-7337. You also may choose to secure your testing at one of the other community testing events offered by PCEMS. For dates, times, and locations see here. As with on campus testing, you must submit your results to the Health Center,, to be checked out of quarantine.

Depending on what day you arrive on campus, all early arrivals will self-quarantine (a minimum of three days) until able to participate in testing. You will be required to self-quarantine again until you receive your test results.

On-campus residents will be assigned a testing day based on their assigned move-in day, and students should plan to be available to participate in testing on either of these days. Students will commit to testing times through a sign-up process. On-line sign-up forms will be shared with students 24–48 hours prior to each testing date.

As stated above, students who have been living or working on campus this summer and have been observing public-health guidance do not have to self-quarantine. If you are identified as being within the criteria above (live in a residence hall, have traveled by air, or have engaged in high-risk behavior), you are required to be tested.

Once tested, you must self-quarantine until you receive your test results. Our county partners are currently estimating a wait time of up to five days following a negative test. The county will use the Everbridge texting system to communicate negative results. Positive test results are typically communicated more quickly (within 24-48 hours) via a phone call or text. Students must remain in quarantine until learning of a negative test result or being instructed about next steps in care following a positive test result.

  • If your test results are negative, you are released from quarantine and are able to resume limited activities consistent with public-health and PLU directives.
  • If your test results are positive, you will hear from Tacoma–Pierce County Health Department about what to do next, including participating in contact tracing and communicating with PLU’s Health Center to confirm your best location for isolation and care.

For students who feel sick, as well as the close contacts of positive cases, PLU’s Health Center has obtained a rapid-testing device that will produce results in 15 minutes, along with a ready supply of testing kits. Any student who develops symptoms of illness while they are in quarantine should contact the Health Center (by phone or email) or Lute Telehealth (available 24/7/365) for evaluation and possible additional testing.

Testing is also available through personal healthcare providers and local and mobile testing sites. Commuter students and students who live on campus and are scheduled to arrive early may utilize these options to secure testing no more than three days prior to coming to campus, provided no air travel occurs and there is no engagement in high-risk behaviors after testing. Students choosing this option must self-quarantine after testing until results are received, and must submit their test results to the Health Center via email prior to participating in any in-person campus activity.

Residence hall early arrivals will receive additional information about the move-in process from, and should direct questions to, Residential Life.

Testing throughout the semester

The county will assist us in hosting regularly scheduled batch “surveillance” testing across campus for groups of students, faculty, and staff. This testing will not require self-quarantine.

Watch for more information about testing dates via your PLU email throughout the semester.

Helpful Reminders

Earlier this summer, faculty, staff, and continuing students received an email from PLU-Safe Colleges with a link to complete a required Coronavirus Awareness training program. If you have not completed this brief training, you should plan to do so no later than Tuesday, September 1st. New students will receive an email from PLU-Safe Colleges this week. Keep a lookout!

We are following the recommendation of the CDC Immunization Division by asking all PLU students, staff and faculty to get a flu shot before arriving on campus this year. Most pharmacies and many medical clinics will have the flu vaccine available by the middle of August.

The flu vaccine will not protect you from COVID-19, but it may decrease the severity of illness and potential complications if you end up with both the flu and COVID-19. We strongly urge you to consider this as part of your “coming-to-campus” planning and your individual responsibility in maintaining your health wherever possible during the ongoing pandemic. If you are unable to obtain a flu shot before arriving, these will be available on campus in late September.