5Cs largely lift mask mandates, testing requirements

With summer just around the corner, most students have left Claremont. This time around, mask mandates and testing requirements have mostly left as well. (Larkin Barnard-Bahn • The Student Life)

As the 5Cs transitioned from hosting graduation ceremonies to summer research, several of the colleges announced changes to masking and testing requirements. 

Pomona College will no longer require COVID-19 testing for fully vaccinated faculty and staff on campus, according to a May 19 message to students, faculty and staff. The changes goes into effect May 23. However, students working on campus will continue to test weekly. 

Indoor masking at Pomona is now optional for vaccinated students, faculty and staff working on campus. For those not up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccinations, Pomona will require indoor masking along with weekly testing. Additionally, masks will continue to be required in classrooms and dining halls.

Claremont McKenna College announced it will provide diagnostic testing only to those experiencing symptoms, according to a message from the college’s COVID Compliance Committee. 

“We are optimistic that the pandemic outlook will continue to improve,” the committee said. “We will only reinstate requirements such as mandatory testing and indoor masking if public health conditions so warrant. We hope that the worst is behind us, but we remain mindful that COVID-19 is stubbornly persistent and always has the potential to reemerge when mitigation measures are relaxed.” 

While Pitzer College also moved to lift the indoor mask mandate, professors and students can request to reinstate mask policies in their respective classes, according to a May 23 update. Weekly testing is optional for students, faculty and staff.

On May 16, Scripps College replaced its weekly testing requirements with an opt-in system for faculty and staff, regardless of vaccination status. As laid out in an April 28 update, students do not have to test after May 13, and masks are optional except in academic classes, Malott Dining Hall and the 240 House Testing Center. 

Harvey Mudd College also removed its testing requirements on May 20 but announced it will continue to provide free testing for students, faculty and staff.

As a “mask friendly” campus, Harvey Mudd will no longer require masks but will allow faculty and event organizers to decide whether to reinstate the mandate for classes and gatherings. While groups are strongly encouraged to meet outdoors, size restrictions and social distancing guidelines have also been lifted.

Harvey Mudd also announced that visitors touring the campus may now enter buildings, without proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. However, indoor masking will be required for visitors.

For The Claremont College Services staff, masks are strongly recommended indoors, with weekly testing required only for those not fully vaccinated, effective May 16. However, masks are required in SHS, MCAPS and the Honnold Mudd Library, according to Laura Muna-Landa, TCCS Assistant Vice President of Communications and Community Relations. 

This is a developing story and will be updated as details become available. TSL is awaiting responses from the communications teams at CMC and Scripps on whether free testing will be offered for the summer. 

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