Carnegie Mellon University

COVID-19 Updates

Information and resources for the CMU community

Scotty with mask and vaccination bandaid
June 16, 2021

Easing of COVID-19 Mitigation Protocols

Dear Members of the Carnegie Mellon University Community:

I write today with updates to the news last week announcing the easing of COVID-19 mitigation protocols on campus for those who have been fully vaccinated. As we approach the summer, with high vaccination adoption rates and continued low COVID-19 case numbers within the region, we are amending our campus posture, updating the minimum requirements and restarting domestic business travel. We will continue to provide additional information as we get closer to the start of the fall semester.

New Campus Posture
Since February, Carnegie Mellon’s Pittsburgh campus has been operating under a Modified Services posture. Effective July 1, CMU will shift to a Transitional Posture, which, as the name indicates, is designed to support our community as we transition back to daily in-person experiences.


The Transitional Posture includes the following changes:

  • For STUDENTS: We expect most instruction to be in person, with remote instruction occurring on a limited basis. Housing and dining facilities will increase their capacities, as will other common spaces. Extracurricular and co-curricular student activities may also resume, and provided those activities are in compliance with CMU’s risk mitigation protocols, pre-approval is not required.
  • For FACULTY AND STAFF: We are expanding in-person delivery of services supporting CMU’s core education and research functions. Administrative units will begin transitioning back to on-campus work, especially those that support in-person on-campus activities. Provided this is done in accordance with CMU’s risk mitigation protocols, pre-approval for returning to campus is no longer required.
  • For RESEARCHERS: We are increasing capacity for on-site activities. Research labs and facilities are to be managed in accordance with revised guidelines, which unit supervisors will receive in the coming days. Provided research activities return to campus in accordance with revised guidelines, pre-approval for resuming research is no longer required.

Updated Minimum Requirements 
We have also updated the minimum requirements that apply to all faculty, staff, students and visitors who will be on campus, reflecting the revised guidelines announced on June 7th. As we explained in that announcement, the relaxation for fully vaccinated individuals is currently based on the honor system (as it is throughout the Commonwealth). While we fully expect that our community will comply, any concerns about noncompliance may be brought to your supervisor, who will follow up with HR to address.

As a reminder, the new minimum requirements for being on campus are as follows:

  • Fully vaccinated individuals are no longer required to wear facial coverings on campus (indoors or outdoors), though they are welcome to continue doing so at their discretion. They are also no longer required to participate in the daily symptom self-assessment or the Tartan Testing program, the university’s COVID-19 asymptomatic testing program.
  • While on campus, individuals who are not fully vaccinated for COVID-19 must wear facial coverings (over the nose and mouth) at all times indoors, and whenever physical distancing of 6 feet or more cannot be maintained outdoors. They must also continue to participate in the daily symptom self-assessment (including temperature monitoring) and participate weekly in Tartan Testing.
  • The capacity limit for in-person meetings and gatherings has been increased to 50 persons for indoor meetings and up to 50% of facility capacity for outdoor gatherings.

Resumption of Domestic Business Travel
Finally, effective July 1, the university will lift the suspension of domestic business travel. Consistent with CDC guidance, we continue to advise low-risk travel behaviors for those traveling. University-sponsored domestic travel is still subject to unit-based approval for all CMU community members. International business travel remains suspended until further notice.

We will continue to publish further information leading up to the fall semester, including the process for documenting compliance with applicable vaccine requirements. In the meantime, thank you for your continued support of our mitigation plans, including our recent vaccine data collection effort.


Daryl Weinert
Vice President for Operations
COVID-19 Coordinator