Information for Families

We are looking forward to welcoming students back to campus and have developed our plans to safeguard the health of our community, based on best practices in public health and government direction.  As we embark on this plan, we ask that all community members commit to following the measures outlined, with which we can help keep each other safe and healthy.  We may need to adjust our fall plan in accordance with forthcoming guidance from state and county public health authorities and will keep the community informed of any updates.

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Academic Calendar

Q: When will classes begin and end in the fall semester?

A: Classes will begin for the term on Monday, August 24, 2020, and end on Tuesday, November 24. Finals will occur and final assessments like papers will be due during the week following Thanksgiving.

Q: When are students supposed to leave at the end of the semester? Are students allowed to travel over the Thanksgiving break? Are students allowed to stay on campus through final exams?

A: If you choose to leave campus for the Thanksgiving break, you will not be allowed to return to campus until the start of the spring term. Final assessments for all students will be given  remotely.  We believe that this measure is necessary for the safety of our community. Thanksgiving is one the busiest times for travel in the U.S., and the risk of students potentially being exposed to COVID-19 while traveling back and forth to campus is too great for us to allow them to return after they leave. 

We encourage students and their families to consider carefully whether they would like to return home for the holiday this year. We are allowing students to stay on campus through the end of the fall term. However, students who elect to go home for the holiday—even if they live in Southern California—will not be allowed to return to campus and will need to complete their exams remotely. We are happy to have our students remain on campus during Thanksgiving if they would like to take their exams on campus.  

Students who do choose to leave November 24 will receive a room and board credit on their student account for the days not used (the time period from November 25 through December 4, the end of the semester). This will be reflected on their statement dated December 31.

Q: Will there be a fall break this year?

A: No.. Given the new start of the academic term is now Monday, August 24, classes will continue through Tuesday, November 24. To provide for sufficient instructional days, classes will be held on Labor Day, there will be no Fall Break, and two Saturdays (tentatively September 12 and November 14) will be designated as class days.  The winter break, however, will be longer than usual.

Q: I am an International student. What happens to my visa if I choose to take a semester or year off?

Incoming Students: If you choose to defer admittance to HMC for a year, your visa will not be impacted as you have not received one. You will not be allowed to get your visa until you attend HMC. Your SEVIS record will reflect a new start date and you will need to be issued a new I-20 or DS-2019 to show at your consular appointment.

Returning Students: If you choose to take a semester off please be mindful of the expiration date of your current visa. If your visa expires prior to your return to campus you WILL need to apply for a new one. If you are in the USA and choose to take a semester off, you will need to leave the country as you will not be in status.

Q: I am an International student. What happens to my SEVIS record if I choose to take a semester or year off?

Incoming Students: If you submit your paperwork to the ISS, a SEVIS record will be created when all the required documents are received. If you choose to attend at a later date the program start date of your SEVIS record will be pushed back to reflect your new start date. This will preserve your I-901 fee if it has already been paid. Upon your return, you will need to submit new documentation before a new I-20 or DS-2019 is sent to you for your consular appointment.

Returning Students: If you choose to take some time away from Mudd, your SEVIS record will be terminated for Early Authorized Withdrawal. Please keep in mind that this may affect your ability to participate in CPT, OPT and AT. For F-1 students: If you plan to return within 5 months of the date of termination, there may be a possibility to reactivate your SEVIS record. If you do not return within the 5 month window, you will need to get a new SEVIS record and your employment clock will restart and you will need to be enrolled for 9 months (one academic school year) before you are eligible for CPT/OPT again. For J-1 students: you will need to get a new SEVIS record, there is no ability to reinstate your previous record. You will need to submit new documentation before a new I-20 or DS-2019 can be issued to you. If your visa will still be valid when you return, then you will not need to apply for a new one; a valid visa is a valid visa.

Q: For international students on an F1 visa, how does the online option affect the visa status, record and internship opportunities in the future?

A: This will be addressed in webinar on July 17, 2020 with Dr. G. & Evelyn Real, RSVP to ereal@hmc.edu.

Q: If the courses appropriate for my progress toward graduation are all available in an online format, may I choose to study from home or elsewhere (not on campus) in the fall term?

A: If appropriate courses are available to you remotely, and you can participate in any required synchronous elements in those courses, you may study from elsewhere during the fall term. We will not offer every course in this format and make no guarantees that all courses necessary to each student’s progress will be available online. Students are encouraged to contact the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs or the Associate Dean of Academic Resources and Student Success with questions. As previously communicated, tuition has been set regardless of the mode of instruction and will not be refunded in the event that instruction occurs remotely for any part of the academic year.

Q: For the CA/LA county approval, is it going to be on a case by case basis or will it be one encompassing verdict of: colleges are (not)allowed to open?

A: One decision for all institutions.

Q: What metrics and evidence are being used to decide what the College will do in the fall? Is the decision in the hands of the state or county, or is HMC considering students being remote even if the state or county allow them to return?

A: Our guidance has been developed using information provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and preliminary information provided by LA County Department of Public Health. In addition, DSA has been working with student leaders to develop revised protocols for students to follow on campus and the Academic Contingency Planning Committee has been working to develop plans around delivery of the academic program. All of this information is at StaySafe@Mudd. That said, ultimately the decision of whether or not the College will be allowed to have students on campus in person this fall will be up to state and county public health officials.

Q: When will we know if we can move on campus for sure? When is the last day that living on campus could be cancelled? As of July 29, what is the recommendation of the LA County Health Department for the reopening of colleges and universities? Have they approved HMC reopening plan for students to return to campus? Is HMC going to set a date for a decision to go all online? Can families expect an update/communication soon as to where things currently stand with this evolving situation?

A: The College has not set a deadline for the decision. It’s important to note that under current orders from the State of California, in-person higher education is not permitted. In planning for the fall semester, Harvey Mudd College decided to proactively develop guidelines that we believed would allow us to open for in-person instruction once the state rescinds its original higher education closure. Our guidelines have been developed based on information gathered from discussions with LA County Department of Public Health (LADPH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). There is no review/approval of the College’s guidelines from the county or the state; the College must certify that it is in compliance with the guidance required for reopening by both Los Angeles County and the State of California.

In a July 29 call with institutions of higher education, LADPH released draft guidance for higher education. This guidance will not be finalized until the state issues its own guidance for higher education. The date for that release has not been set. Our hope is that the state will release its guidance in the coming days. Once that happens, we should be able to announce to students, faculty, staff and families if we believe the College will be able to have the necessary protocols in place to meet the requirements of both the county and state. We are in the process of reviewing the draft guidance from LADPH to ensure the College’s current plans are aligned with the requirements and to make necessary adjustments. We appreciate your patience and we continue to adjust on a daily basis as the situation continues to evolve.

Q: Will there be any classes held on Saturdays?

A: The fall semester plan adopted by The Claremont Colleges schedules classes on two Saturdays.  Instructors will have discretion regarding the scheduling alternatives to these days.

Fall 2020 Schedule

First-year and returning students will follow the same schedule for the beginning and ending of term, as well as the taking of finals. The revised academic calendar for fall is available in the registrar’s website.

Q: I am a continuing student. Given my own health and safety concerns and/or my strong preference to have my academic experiences at HMC occur when the campus is again fully operational, may I take a voluntary leave? Would that leave have to be for a full year? By what date would I need to let you know if planned to take a leave for 2020-2021?

A: Voluntary leaves are processed through the offices of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and the Associate Dean for Academic Resources and Student success. Please reach out to deans Marianne De Laet or Amy Bibbens with specific questions.  We are asking that students who plan to take a full-year voluntary leave to notify us by July 10.

Q: Will students who take a yearl-ong leave of absence be able to do room draw and course registration for fall 2021 as part of their new class year?

A: Yes.

Q: Will on campus housing be guaranteed?

A: Yes.

Q: My daughter does not need to take classes in a particular order and would like to take just one semester off, not an entire year. Is this possible?

A: Whole year leaves are being approved, not single semesters.

Q: If my student goes on leave of absence will he still receive his merit financial aid award for each of the remaining two years of his HMC career.

A: Yes, merit scholarships are reserved for the following year.

Q: If a student takes the fall semester off can they take classes from another university for Mudd credit?

A: The student should work with their academic advisor in advance to ensure they will receive credit for the courses before they make arrangements for this option.

Q: Can students defer a semester?

A: Due to the way classes have been structured, only full year deferments are taken into consideration at this time.

Q: Given that more students may defer this year, will you maintain the current class size or increase it to accommodate the possibility of a larger class of 2025 than anticipated?

A: We will take class sizes into account to the extent that we can in subsequent semesters, but it is likely that there will be some larger classes to accommodate the displacement of enrollments.

Q: If the College is not able to reopen physically due to state or county restrictions, would students still be allowed to take a year or semester off, and would you get a refund for the July payment of the monthly payment plan?

A: Yes. If the College is not permitted to reopen, we will allow students who had previously told us they planned to join us on campus to either defer or take a leave of absence. In addition, in this situation, we would follow the procedure used previously to credit student accounts for the unused portion of room and board.

Co-Curricular Life on Campus

Q: What are the consequences to students when they are found breaking safety rules? (As we all know, teenagers and young adults they will like to push boundaries, they have already been away for a long time and have lot of stress, anxiety, and would want to meet up with their friends, go for a late night run etc. etc.)

A: This was discussed in one of the “Inside Mudd” parent’s panels. We will be working on norming practices for students to help build a culture of how to manage this situation, and reporting options. Students who do not comply will be asked to leave-campus (cannot live on-campus) for the safety of self and others.

Q: How will we enforce these safety measures?

A: We outline that in the FAQ. First this is about safety. We will engage with students and utilize the Honor Code and the res life teams will be key in this as well. Living on campus and making that choice means you have to decide that you need to live within these boundaries and rules for your own safety and the safety of others.

Q: How will you monitor if the kids are ONLY going to grocery store not to restaurants?

A: This is an example of how our Honor Code operates and student self-reporting.

Q: Will there be Career Fairs?

A: Yes, The Office of Career Services plans to host all our career fairs and other on-campus recruiting events and interviews virtually. We are taking advantage of being virtual and are teaming up with Caltech for our career fairs this fall. In addition to our STEM and Software Engineering Virtual Career Fairs, we are also hosting a smaller Virtual Graduate School and Fellowships Career Fair inviting programs Mudders have applied to and attended.

We understand participation in a virtual career fair will be a new experience for many of our students, therefore we will have workshops and guides prior to the events to help students prepare and stand out at these virtual events.

  • September 2: Virtual Graduate School and Fellowships Career Fair
  • October 1: Virtual Software & Data Science Fair with Caltech & Mudd
  • October 8: Virtual STEM Fair with Caltech & Mudd

Q: What is going to happen with Dry Week and Wet Season?

A: 1C/5C parties will be canceled for the fall, and possibly into the spring. Therefore, we will not have a “dry week” and “wet season” this year. When it is determined that social gatherings can happen in some form (either later this fall or next spring semester), it is important to note they will include social distancing precautions such as requirements for small numbers, face coverings, outdoor spaces, and other social distancing measures.

Q: How will you meet special dietary needs during the first 2 weeks and beyond?

A: We will be offering three types of meals daily for delivery (unrestricted meals, vegan meals, and allergen-free meals). Our allergen-free meals will be free of the FDA’s Top 8 major allergens and therefore will contain no milk, egg, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, wheat, peanuts, or soybeans. If you have a special life-threatening dietary need that is not met by the meals mentioned above, please contact the Office of Disability Resources Amy Bibbens at abibbens@g.hmc.edu who will work with Dining Services and the student to develop a plan for meals that meet their dietary needs.

Q: Will students have to leave the meal plan?

A: Students will not have to leave the meal plan. Dining Services will do their best to meet the student’s dietary needs. If students want to petition to leave the meal plan they need to email reslife@hmc.edu.

Q: What kind of meals will be available during the quarantine period?

A: We will have a combination of hot and cold entrees that will be served with a beverage, side dish, snack, and dessert. We will offer three types of meals daily for delivery (unrestricted meals, vegan meals and allergen-free meals) based on the student’s meal plan selection. Our allergen-free meals will be free of the FDA’s top 8 major allergens and therefore will contain no milk, egg, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, wheat, peanuts, or soybeans.

Yes, a student will need to be on a meal plan to receive the delivered meals during the initial 14 day quarantine period.

The Huntley Bookstore has remained open and will continue to remain open throughout the fall semester to support students and the campus community. Starting August 24 the hours will be Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Currently the store is open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Students are encouraged to order books early, and ship to their home. Shipping is free for orders over $65, and $7.50 for orders under $65. There is also a 30% off promotion for new students and their families and the Huntley Bookstore will send an email that contains the 30% off promotion information to new students soon.

COVID Safety Plan

The Huntley Bookstore is taking the same precautions you’ve experienced at many other retail stores such as:

  • Face masks required for all staff and customers.
  • Thorough cleaning, including wiping down commonly touched surfaces.
  • Promoting social distancing by limiting the number of customers in the store.

Additionally, the store will offer limited contact/curb side pickup for the first two weeks from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. This will take place near the bookstore courtyard entrance on Dartmouth Ave. Directional signs and posters will help direct students to this area. Mailroom delivery will also be offered for the first two weeks of class for schools that have students on campus. Students can order online and select ‘Mailroom Delivery’ from the delivery options.

Currently we are not changing the process of student mail receipt and distribution for the upcoming season. Families should still send packages in the same manner and they can refer to Mailroom for more information.

Mail sent to the college should have a complete address identifying the student recipient. See example below:

Harvey Mudd College
Student Name
Student Mail Box No. (If known, not necessary)
340 E. Foothill Blvd.
Claremont, CA 91711-3116

Courier deliveries, USPS First Class, overnight, certified, registered and insured letters/packages for students are accepted in the mailroom during regular business hours.

All students will be assigned a mail slot, locker and combo lock for the duration of their time at HMC. First year students can obtain a locker and combo lock at the start of the first semester of classes by stopping in at the mailroom to obtain the lock and proper info.

Q: Can I mail items to the mailroom and pick it up during my move in time slot?

A: You may mail items to yourself and they will be delivered to your residence hall. Students will be in quarantine for the first 14 days on campus, and we will use contactless delivery for mail and packages.

Q: What will HMC do to support students’ mental health under these unusual circumstances this fall?

A: The effects of COVID-19 and the way it has changed how we live and work as a nation have been significant for all of us. HMC is committed to the health and well-being of our community. Students will continue to have access to virtual health and well-being resources. We anticipate Student Health Services (SHS) and Monsour Counseling and Psychiatric Services (MCAPS) will be open for students for both in-person and virtual appointments, in addition to continuing the TimelyMD telehealth services and MIResource that were implemented this past spring for students. The Division of Student Affairs (DSA) will continue to provide student engagement opportunities (such as Muchachos events, Office of Institutional Diversity (OID) webinars, Wellness YouTube activities) for students in a virtual format this fall, and will continue to reassess in-person activities as guidance and mandates evolve. Additionally, we have been working hard to create a plan to safely re-open the Linde Activities Center (LAC) for students to have access to physical activities and exercise.

Q: Will there be intercampus students interaction with 5C students during the fall semester?

A: All 5C and 7C social gatherings and collaborative events will be postponed or offered virtually until further notice. Any permissible in-person gatherings at HMC will be campus-specific and not open to attendance from students of other colleges.

Q: What are gathering limits going to look like in the fall?

A: Gatherings should be 8 people or less in an appropriately spaced area.

Courses and Modalities of Instruction

Q: Will courses be taught in online or in-person formats?

A: Both. Some number of courses will be taught exclusively online; some, like labs and studio art courses, will be taught largely in person (with rigorous social distancing and other safety measures in place), and some will be taught in hybrid formats that use both in-person and online modalities

Q: Which courses will not be online only?

A: We are in the process of designating what we are calling “Tier One” courses, courses where hands-on work is integral to the learning objectives. Tier One courses will include some laboratories and studio courses, some clinics, and likely some in-person research, particularly for thesis students with lab components to their work.

Q: What will access to the library look like?
A: Order books online and pick up only. No study spaces.

Q: Why are so many courses going to be online only?

A: Online courses offer us the greatest opportunities for flexibility and safety. An online only course can serve HMC students on campus, cross-registrants, and possibly even HMC students who are not able to return to campus. These courses also are well-suited for students who may need to self-quarantine for some time during the semester, and offer a safe teaching assignment to faculty members who may be particularly vulnerable to COVID-19. But we will only assign courses to this designation where we are confident that we can continue to meet core learning objectives successfully.

Q: How many courses will be online only?

A: We anticipate that between 50% and 70% of courses will be delivered online only. That number may change throughout the summer as additional information becomes available to us about safety protocols required by public health officials.

Q: What support will the students who are staying off campus receive from Mudd faculty and how the online learning with remote learners can be facilitated?

A: Plan to model this very similarly to how the spring semester was delivered. HMC also had a robust summer courses offering and additional learning was realized during those courses to better facilitate online learning. Tutoring and grutoring will be available online as well as the Academic Excellence (AE) office and The Writing Center. Faculty will have online office hours by appointment and group meetings. Faculty office hours actually had better attendance in the spring semester as an online offering than in person office hours earlier in the year. Very popular with students.

Q: Can a student start on campus, and switch to remote learning later in the semester if they choose?

A: Yes, but not the reverse.

Q: Can students take one or two Mudd classes online for credit?

A: No, part time online is not an option.

Q: If students stay home and take online classes for the fall semester, will they have access to the same classes for the spring semester as other students who were on campus in the fall?

A: Students who engage in remote study will participate in course registration on an equal footing with students who are present on campus in the fall.

Q: There are two core labs (physics and engineering) required for sophomores which are not available online this fall. Will students choosing to live off campus be delayed in graduation (at great expense) due to this or will these required courses be offered later in spring and/or summer so that they can complete core requirements on time?

A: E 79 has dropped its practicum offering for this semester and will waive the practicum requirement for this year and fold its lessons into the main course material. Downstream engineering courses will accommodate. Sophomores therefore will be dropped from E79P without consequences.

PHYS 50, Physics lab, will be taught in online and remote versions. Students have been placed in sections by the registrar; there is a mechanism to swap sections if absolutely necessary, but in principle students do not need to act in order to get in the right section.

Q: If students chose the “remote semester option,” how could they stay on track with Mudd graduation requirements given that almost all students have one or more lab requirements?

A: individual academic advising is available from the academic deans at: academicdeans-l@g.hmc.edu.

Q: Can the physical education (P.E.) requirement be met remotely via exercise at home, etc.?

A: Yes. We plan to offer virtual, online P.E. courses.

Health and Safety

Q: What happens when a student has been diagnosed with COVID-19? What happens when a student thinks they have COVID-19? What happens if a student thinks they have been exposed to COVID-19?

A: If a student believes they may have COVID-19 or if they are experiencing signs and symptoms, they should immediately isolate and contact Student Health Services at 909.621.8222 or Campus Safety after hours at 909.607.2000. If a student has been diagnosed with COVID-19, they should inform the Division of Student Affairs (DSA) of the positive test ASAP by calling 909.621.8125 or emailing dean_of_students@hmc.edu.

Isolation is used to separate people infected with the virus from people who are not infected. Students who are in isolation should remain until it’s safe for them to be around others. DSA will help coordinate isolation for the student as well as meals, coursework and other needs while in isolation. Contact tracing will be conducted to determine what other community members may have had contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 and any individuals who have been identified as close contacts (defined as having close (within 6.6 ft) and prolonged (generally more than 30 minutes) contact with a person displaying symptoms of COVID-19) will be instructed to quarantine.

If a student believes they have been exposed to COVID-19, they should immediately begin quarantine procedures and contact Student Health Services at 909.621.8222 or Campus Safety after hours at 909.607.2000. Quarantine is used to keep someone who might have been exposed to COVID-19 away from others to help prevent spread of disease that can occur before a person knows they are sick or if they are infected with the virus without feeling symptoms. DSA will help coordinate quarantine for the student as well as meals, coursework and other needs while in quarantine.

Students experiencing any of the following symptoms should contact Campus Safety at 909.607.2000 immediately:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Pressure or pain in chest
  • Blueish face or lips
  • Confused or hard to wake
  • Other serious symptoms

For more information, please review LA County’s Home Isolation Instructions for People with COVID-19.

Q: What will the exact (or near exact) restrictions/availability of resources be when a student is sick?

A: Since the vast majority of students are not covered by the Student Health Insurance Program (SHIP) they should establish a relationship with a health care provider in this area (search zip code 91711 on their provider’s website) PRIOR to arriving on campus. Making sure that the health care provider is accepting new patients. All students, whether covered by SHIP or not, have access to the Student Health Services (SHS) of The Claremont Colleges Services (TCCS). Testing of symptomatic students will be available at SHS. It is unclear at this time if an adequate number of tests will be available to proactively test all students.

Q: How will contact tracing, symptom checking, medical care, and isolation/quarantine work for students at HMC?

A: Much of our specific protocol for managing confirmed COVID-19 cases will depend on the technology that is selected for our contact tracing management at HMC. Several of the frontrunners we are considering have useful symptom-checking applications that would connect directly to Student Health Services (SHS), the HMC Contact Tracing team, and HMC On-Call team. These symptom checking applications allow for students to report directly to trained medical professionals to communicate their symptoms, receive medical treatment, and to alert if symptoms become dangerous.

It is important for us to be transparent with students and families that students who are ill with COVID-19 would not receive in-person symptom checking or care from non-medical professionals on our campus, as this would put our staff at risk. The College is planning to provide thermometers and some basic supplies for students upon their arrival to campus, while also encouraging students to pack (a packing list will be provided) supplies such as medications including fever reducers, cleaning supplies, and various items should they become ill. Additionally, all of our students, whether choosing to return to campus or to engage in remote learning, will have access to medical and psychological care via Student Health Services (SHS), Monsour Counseling and Psychiatric Services (MCAPS), or the telehealth company TimelyMD.

Students who have tested positive for COVID-19 will be moved to isolation rooms for ten days plus a reduced fever for three days plus declining symptoms (per CDC guidance). Students will be cleared by a medical professional from SHS prior to finishing their isolation period. Students who either live with a student who has tested positive or who have been identified as potentially exposed close contacts through the contact tracing process will be asked to quarantine in their current rooms for 14 days and until they are cleared by a medical professional at SHS. During isolation and quarantine:

  • All students will receive surgical masks, regular virtual check-ins from SHS and On-Call Deans, as well as information about what to do if their symptoms worsen or become dangerous.
  • Students will receive cleaning supplies to maintain their rooms and keep their bathrooms and common areas clean.
  • Students in quarantine (not isolation) will be given scheduled access to designated outdoor spaces and reasonable requests for wellness needs will be considered.
  • Meals, mail, and medications will be delivered to all students for the duration of their isolation/quarantine.

Students who are in quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19 illness or exposure will be connected to the Academic Deans for support.

Once our protocols have been more fully developed, based on our housing numbers and contact tracing software, they will be communicated with students. For now, this should provide a broad picture of what students and families can expect regarding caring for students who become ill with COVID-19, as well as our limitations for in-person monitoring and care.

Q: Will students that tested positive for COVID-19 and now test negative be allowed to move back to campus?

A: Yes. Students who test negative and no longer have symptoms will be allowed to return to campus.

Q: Since the CDC released new guidance recommending isolation of only 10 days after onset of COVID symptoms in most patients, will HMC adjust their requirements?

A: In the absence of additional guidance from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health or the State of California, Harvey Mudd will follow the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Q: Will COVID-19 testing be available on campus?

A: Student Health Services will have testing for students who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. Faculty and staff who are experiencing symptoms should contact their health care provider to discuss whether testing is necessary. Students who are experiencing symptoms should self-isolate and not attend any in-person classes or other activities until they have been cleared to do so. Faculty and staff who are experiencing symptoms should NOT report to campus for work and should contact their direct supervisor.

Q: How readily available will coronavirus tests be? Will all students, staff, and faculty be tested before the start of classes? How often will we all be tested?

A: Right now, the advice (Read ACHA COVID-19 Testing: What We Know as of June 3, 2020 (PDF) and LAOCPH COVID-19 Testing Strategy (PDF) guidance) is not to test students at the start of term and not to test until someone exhibits symptoms or has come into direct contact with someone who has tested positive. Due to shortage of testing nationally, we believe this is more of an equity issue in that if colleges and universities over-consume available tests, it leaves fewer for the people who really are more vulnerable. Our plan, assuming we are able to have students on campus and based on advice from medical experts, is doing daily symptom checks for everyone who is on campus. It is possible there will be some campuses that decide to test every student despite medical advice, but we are not planning to do that.

Q: Will Student Health Services charge a fee for COVID-19 testing?

A: Student Health Services will not charge students to test for COVID-19. However they are reserving tests for symptomatic individuals.

Q: Why are we not testing on day one of return to make sure that the 0.5% of asymptomatic cases are caught and then again on week 2 for any new cases? That would set you up for the least risk going forward and would allow for a reduced quarantine. Tests are available and this is a logical and reasonable use of them.

A: Over the last week or so, medical advisors have advised against testing the students upon arrival. The reason is twofold, one is you can get a negative test on day one and test positive on day two. If the students test negative it may cause students to be a little less inclined to follow the strict guidelines. The other reason is that if all colleges test students upon return, it will use up a lot of resources that are available in the county and medical experts feel it is inappropriate because students of this age range are less likely to have a serious case of the infection. Only symptomatic individuals will be tested.

Q: If students want to get tested outside the school administered tests, or if they have a health question, will there be a simple way?

A: Students are only allowed to leave campus and return for essential needs, that includes doctor visits.

Q: What are the expectations for students to follow the health & safety protocols?

A: Students who make the choice to come back to campus this fall will be expected to follow specific COVID-19 protocols and policies for their safety and for the safety of the larger HMC community. These protocols and policies will be clearly outlined for all students prior to their return, and students will sign a document acknowledging these protocols and policies prior to being permitted to move into the residence halls or begin classes on campus.

The HMC Honor Code states that students are expected to act as responsible individuals, to conduct themselves with honesty and integrity both personally and academically and to respect the rights of others. The College considers these standards to be essential to our ability to physically reopen this fall. Students who violate the COVID-19 protocols and policies will be subject to a student conduct process. This will be true for HMC students who have been alleged to violate other 7C College policies, as the HMC Honor Code also expects that students will exhibit “responsible behavior both on and off campus”.

Students who behave in a way that presents a substantial risk of harm to self and/or others may be subject to the involuntary leave process as outlined in the Leave of Absence, Withdrawal, and Readmission Policy.

Q: How will you monitor if the kids are ONLY going to grocery store not to restaurants?

A: This is an example of how our Honor Code operates and student self-reporting.

Q: Does HMC have a deadline before the school shifts to online courses if the situation worsens, or that decision has to come exclusively from the CA/LA government agency?

A: The College intends to open for in-person classes unless ordered to shift to online coursework only by the county or state. We cannot anticipate when or if that might happen, but we will notify our students, families, faculty and staff as quickly as possible should that be decided.

Q: How many positive cases among students, staff, or faculty will cause the school to shut down in the fall? Will we announce this number before we make the decision to bring students back to campus?

A: We anticipate we will receive additional guidance in this area from the state once the governor announces the guidelines for reopening higher education.

Q: Will Monsour be open? Will we have only online counseling available or can we have in person counseling?

A: Monsour Counseling and Psychological Services (MCAPS) is planning to open beginning August 24, 2020, from 8 a.m.–5 p.m. for appointment scheduling. Students are expected to first call 909.621.8202 to determine with MCAPS whether an online or in-person meeting is appropriate to meet the needs of the student. At this time, MCAPS is looking at solutions to have both in-person and online counseling available in the fall, and will continue to offer crisis counseling for students.

Q: If there is an outbreak or shutdown at one of the other 7Cs, how would that affect HMC, and is the “outbreak” criteria of three cases on a college campus still accurate?

A: LA County Department of Public Health has mentioned that at three cases they will come to campus to investigate and assist in contact tracing. However, they have not yet published their formal guidance for higher education, so there could still be changes. It’s important for everyone to realize that if we have people on campus, it is highly likely we will have someone who becomes infected. When that happens, it is very important that we have contact tracing available to help us identify and isolate anyone who came in contact with that person.

Q: Will a student who contracts COVID and decides to go home immediately be considered part of the 3 person limit by the LA County Department of Public Health?

A: The number of infected students is 3 per institution, so yes.

Q: What kinds of PPE will be provided to students?

A: All students will be supplied with cloth masks, hand sanitizer and digital thermometers. Cleaning supplies will be provided in residence halls and bathrooms.

Q: Have any staff, faculty, students or family members tested positive?

A: Yes. The announcement was posted on this website. It’s important to note that patient confidentiality requirements will not permit us to tell people the name of a person who tests positive, merely to inform people that someone they may have been in contact with has tested positive for COVID-19.

Q: Will staff and faculty have to use their own sick time to quarantine if there is a positive test on campus?

A: If you are sick, we ask that you do not come to campus, alert your supervisor as soon as possible, and you record your time away from campus as sick time. The response to the question of what to do if someone on campus has tested positive is nuanced.  Just because someone tests positive on campus does not necessarily mean that employees should quarantine themselves and not report to work. The response depends on whether an employee has been in close contact with a person who has tested positive for COVID-19.  Close contact is defined by LA County Department of Public Health, as an individual who has been was within 6 feet of the infected person for more than 15 minutes and an individual who had unprotected contact with the infected person’s body fluids and/or secretions, for example, being coughed or sneezed on, sharing utensils or saliva, or providing care without wearing appropriate protective equipment.  If you believe you have had close contact with a person who has tested positive for COVID-19, and you are otherwise healthy and not showing symptoms, you should speak to your supervisor, who as necessary, will put you in touch with HR so they can walk you through an assessment of whether quarantine is advised by HMC.

Q: Are you allowing yourself the potential for things to loosen in the second semester? Would it be an advantage to those on campus that protocols might relax and clubs, sports, cross college classes, etc. might resume after winter break?

A: Wholly dependent on the virus and a vaccine and LA County allowing it.

Q: What are the changes in campus protocol around cleaning and sanitizing residential spaces? Bathrooms? Academic spaces? Food service?

A: Using current CDC and LA County Public Health recommendations and following the manufacturer’s instructions for EPA approved disinfectants, staff will disinfect restrooms three times daily including all “high-touch” surfaces such as counters, doorknobs, light switches, restroom fixtures, toilets, showers and trash cans. Additionally, staff will be assigned to continually sanitize common use areas throughout campus such as tables and chairs in our dining facilities, handrails, stairwells, restrooms, and elevators to disinfect these high traffic high touch areas. While cleaning, staff will follow social distance protocols and wear the appropriate personal protective equipment. The Facilities and Maintenance Office will continue to monitor CDC and LA County Public Health recommendations and will modify the cleaning and sanitizing process, as considered necessary.

Students, faculty and staff are highly encouraged to frequently sanitize the high touch areas within their personal residential and office spaces such as keyboards, phones and others used throughout the day.  Cleaning supplies will be made available in various locations throughout the campus for use by students, faculty and staff.

Q: What does #StaySafeAtMudd mean? Can students go into the Village? Go on a run or bike ride off-campus? How will student personal travel over the weekends be limited, if at all? Will my student be able to come home to visit at all during the fall semester?

A: #StaySafeAtMudd is modeled after the California “Safer at Home” initiative and is guided by health risks and a commitment to equity on campus. Because college campuses are considered to be “high risk” environments for COVID-19, special policies and protocols will be in place to help reduce health risks for our community.

Students will be required to remain on campus except for “essential purposes” such as doctor visits, therapists, pharmacies, curbside pickup, and groceries. Students will not be permitted to visit the other 7C campuses or have visitors at HMC, with the exception of one person who can assist them with moving-in to their residence halls for a designated period of time.

Students will be permitted to go on jogs, runs or bike rides off campus as long as they adhere to COVID-19 safety precautions including physical distancing and wearing face coverings.

In addition to special policies, protocols around wearing masks, social distancing, cleaning schedules, dining operations, common spaces, contact tracing, testing, and isolation/quarantine spaces have been established to protect our community members.

Q: Our student on occasion comes home for the weekend. Will this be possible?

A: No, once they leave campus they may not return.

Q: Can you explain how it would look if living in a double room dorm and one person travels and then has to quarantine does the roommate who didn’t leave also have to quarantine?

A: Students are not allowed to travel until the end of the semester when they go home. Once a student leaves campus they are not allowed to return to live in their residence hall.

Q: Is the botanic gardens across the street an option for outside exercise/walk during quarantine?

A: Yes, students can purchase a membership and walk in the gardens.

Q: Could HMC expand the boundaries of its “closed campus” to include the facilities of the colleges who are not reopening?

A: Pomona, Scripps and Pitzer campuses are fully closed and have stated that they will not allow us to use their facilities, including their residence halls.

Q: If the situation in Los Angeles County/the state changes, will the College decide to send students home early before the end of the semester? How will the decision be made?

A: There is no way for us to predict how COVID-19 might spread or when/if the state might experience the beginning of a “second wave” of infections. As we did last spring, the College will closely follow the guidance of state and county public health officials in making any determination about closures. In the event we are forced to send students home, we would anticipate following a similar procedure to that followed last spring, pausing instruction briefly and providing students and families with as much notice as possible regarding the transition to online-only coursework and issuing room and board refunds as appropriate.

Q: What will the metrics be for sending students home?

A: LA County Department of Public Health, upon inspection, can shut the school down for cause. Or, the county or state can declare the Shelter In Place (again) and all students would be sent home at their direction.

Q: If HMC has to go back to online classes only this fall will students be able to stay on campus? If they have to move out for a period of time can they leave their personal belongings in their dorm rooms? Will everything have to be packed up and removed again?

A: if HMC has to go back to online only it will be because the state or county has deemed that necessary. In that case students will need to pack up their belongings and remove everything from their residence hall.

Q: Will SHIP cover COVID related expenses?

A: SHIP covers COVID related expenses (Aetna handout).

Q: In the case that on campus learning is not allowed by the State of California, how will that affect the school health insurance for students?

A: There is no negative effect, students can still be covered by the Student Health Insurance Plan.

COVID Testing Capabilities

Student Health Services (SHS) is attempting to secure COVID-19 testing capability and will provide such testing to any local students based on meeting their guidelines-based criteria for testing. In the event that SHS does not have this capacity, SHS will provide students with information for current public health and private testing options.

Students Living on Campus or Locally Off-campus

Student Health Services (SHS) will continue to operate during the academic year, but with a modified schedule. Medical services through SHS can be received on an appointment basis only. Walk-in appointments will not be allowed due to COVID-19 pandemic related restrictions. As a result, same day appointment availability will be expanded to accommodate most students in a timely manner. SHS can be contacted at 909.621.8222. Review the SHS website to get more detailed information about the services provided.

For those students who wish to avoid in-person visits at SHS or require non-emergent medical care outside of SHS hours of operation, they still have the option of utilizing the contracted telemedicine service, Campus.Health. This no-cost option is available to all students at The Claremont Colleges, regardless of whether they are living on campus, locally off campus or in a different part of the country. Please note that all telemedicine services will be provided through Campus.Health, not SHS.

Lastly, students may also choose to receive medical care through local community physicians, urgent cares or hospitals that are covered in their network, utilizing their private medical insurance or Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP). Please contact your insurance company directly to verify that a provider is covered by your insurance plan prior to obtaining services.

Students Living in a Different part of the Country

While SHS is unable to provide you services directly, The Claremont Colleges have contracted with a telemedicine service, Campus.Health. This no-cost option is available to all students at The Claremont Colleges, regardless of whether they are living on campus, locally off campus or in a different part of the country.

Students may also choose to receive medical care through local community physicians, urgent cares or hospitals that are covered in their network, utilizing their private medical insurance or Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP). Please contact your insurance company directly to verify that a provider is covered by your insurance plan prior to obtaining services.

Students Living Internationally

For those students living internationally, unfortunately, neither SHS nor the contracted telemedicine service will be able to provide medical services to you at this time. You will most likely need to arrange for your own medical care locally where you reside. Please contact the dean of students if you require any further assistance in this matter.

Q: Will everyone be tested before returning back to campus? Staff as well as students?

A: A lot depends on access to tests. If for example there are tests that can be done easily, then yes, we would do that. We also are investigating the use of apps for daily health check questionnaires as well as for assistance in contact tracing if necessary. We also are discussing the possibility of conducting temperature checks. As these plans continue to evolve, we will update you.

Q: Why can’t you require testing before they come back and bring results?

A: Medical records are confidential and covered by HIPAA, the college cannot compel anyone to reveal their medical test results.

Q: Will anyone be taking students’ temperature when they move in?

A: Students will conduct their own symptom checking including taking their temperatures.

Q: With all students coming back from abroad and other US states that have opened with people being more relaxed with masks and social distancing it is highly likely many students will arrive asymptomatic and possibly cause a rapid community spread. How will you mitigate that?

A: That is what the 14 day quarantine will address.

Q: My student has to fly back to California. Will he have a place on campus to stay a day or two before he can move into the dorm or do I need to get him a hotel?

A: Students will only be allowed to move back to campus on the day and time they are assigned. Those assignments will be communicated in August. If a student arrives earlier they will need to provide for their own accommodations.

Q: Do you plan to quarantine students when they return for the Spring semester?

A: Entirely dependent on the virus and a vaccine at that time.

Illness and Academic Accommodations

Q: How will learning accommodations be handled during final exams?

A: As is always the case, our Office of Academic Accessibility will partner with faculty and students to recommend practices for final exams for all students with documented accommodations. The recommendations will be tailored to the specific needs of the student and the nature of the desired assessment.

Q: What if a student has accommodations that affect their abilities to attend 100% online? Can we expect some options to meet those accommodations?

A: Please contact: academicdeans-l@g.hmc.edu.

Misc

Q: When will financial aid info be available? And will payment be allowed to be delayed?

A: The Office of Financial Aid is working on revising student award letters as they make the college aware of plans to live at home and/or study remotely. Payments will not be delayed.

Move-in and Orientation

Q: Does the July 10 deadline to decide if coming back to campus mean we are required to pay room even if things change before the move-in date which would cause our student to not be able to move on campus?

A:

  • All students expected to be enrolled for FA20 already have fall semester charges posted to their student account as of July 1.
    • If the student is on the monthly payment plan, their first installment is due by July 20
    • If the student is on the full payment plan, their payment is due by August 20.
  • If college housing is not an option later due to campus closure by county health or state mandate, the room and board charge would be credited at that time. Otherwise, students are still expected to pay under the normal contract dates specified above.
  • If the student opts to cancel their housing contract after July 15, they would be responsible for the $300 cancellation fee.
  • If the student is on the monthly payment plan, they are required to pay their first installment by July 20. Delinquent accounts are subject to a 1% late fee.
  • For returning students, as indicated in the housing contract, the cancellation fee is applicable if the student terminates their housing contract after participating in draw and prior to the start of the contract period.
  • Cancellation by the student after the contract period is at the discretion and approval of the student’s petition cancellation petition due to a documented personal hardship or unforeseeable extenuating circumstance.

Ultimately, we want students to make their housing decision based on what they are comfortable with and what is the safest for them. We are trying to balance that with our need to know that decision far enough in advance to plan a smooth and safe move-in for those who choose that option and so that we can budget the resources necessary to make this possible.

Q: My daughter has heard rumors that school might be moving students rooms who are returning to campus. She is living in a single in a suite, and is basing part of her return decision on living in that room with her current suitemates. If they decide to move students and she is not happy with her rooming situation, is she able to change her mind and stay home without financial repercussions?

A: Cancelation should occur prior to the start of the contract period: August 22 for new students and August 23 for returning students. Also, students who cancel prior to the start of the housing contract period, there is a $300 cancellation fee.

Q: If we choose to attend in person by July 10, later on find out that all classes are going to be online classes, can we change to not attend in person and get a refund on room/board?

A: Yes.

Q: The defer date (July 10) is days away. This is not enough time for students to determine other options and make decisions. Can ED students defer? If they defer, can they take classes at a local Community college or other institution online and keep their status at HMC?

A: If you decide to defer, the only conditions are that you are not allowed to become a fully matriculated student at another college or enroll at another college. If you want to take a few classes during your deferment, contact the Office of Admission.

Change of Mind After Enrollment Confirmation

Q: What happens if a student wants to change their mind after completing the Enrollment Confirmation & Housing Reservation Form by July 15?

A: For returning students who previously signed the housing contract and went through the room draw process last spring:

If students state that they will NOT be living on campus by July 15, they will not be charged the housing deposit of $300 or they get a refund if they have already paid.

For students who indicate that they intend to live on campus by the July 15th deadline but then change their minds after that date:
If a student confirms that they would like to be on campus by the July 15th deadline, they can still decide to change that decision after and receive a full refund prior to the move-in day. The student would, however, not be refunded the $300 housing deposit in this scenario. There would be no refund of housing once a student moves in. The only exception to this policy is our one-time COVID-19 exception, which is that if a student chooses to leave on 11/25/20, they recieve a 10 day refund. Note the following refund policy:

  • A 100 percent refund of charges and fees is made if withdrawal occurs before the first day of classes.
  • A 75 percent refund of the tuition charge is made if withdrawal occurs on or after the first day of classes, but before the eighteenth day of classes.
  • A 50 percent refund of the tuition charge is made if withdrawal occurs after the first seventeen days of classes, but before the thirtieth day of classes.
  • No refund of the tuition charge is made after the thirtieth day of classes.
  • Refund of board charge is on a pro rata basis.
  • There is no refund of the room charges or fees.
  • Refunds are made by the college within 30 days of receipt of the Withdrawal/Leave of Absence Form by the Dean of Students.
    Visit Refunds for more information.

A: For students who indicate that they intend to live off campus by the July 15 deadline but then change their minds after that date:

A student may decide to indicate by July 15th that they will not physically be on campus this fall, and change their mind before the beginning of the fall semester. In this scenario, we would not be able to honor room draw selections for returning students or room/roommate requests for incoming students, but we would be able to offer rooms that would be available for students to pick from if they change their minds. We intend to do our best to help students in this scenario, but we cannot make any guarantees.

A: For students who indicate they intend to return to live on campus but the College is not able to reopen physically due to local or state-wide restrictions:

Students in this situation would receive a full refund including the $300 room deposit if we are not able to open as intended in August. If students move into their rooms but the College must close physically earlier than planned in the semester, their room and board fees would be prorated based on the date that they leave campus.

Q: When can I move in on campus?

A: Information about the fall move-in process is below. Also, we want to help you think about your travel plans should you decide to return. As a reminder, if you are in a position to let us know whether you 1) intend to live on campus and be available to participate in in-person classes; 2) study remotely; or 3) apply for a leave of absence/defer, by the original deadline of July 10, that will be incredibly helpful in making sure we can secure the necessary resources. If you need a little more time, we ask that you complete the HMC Fall 2020 Enrollment Confirmation & Housing Reservation Form no later than July 15.

Making Travel Arrangements

We recommend that you do not purchase flights or make travel arrangements until July 20 at the earliest. We will be assessing how many students will be living on campus and assigning move-in times based on this information, which we will be unable to do before July 15.

When purchasing flights and making travel arrangements, we suggest that you select options that are refundable. While HMC is making preparations to re-open this fall, the LA County Department of Public Health has not yet approved the reopening of higher education institutions. California is still in the early stages of Phase 2 of its re-opening plan, and in recent days, we have seen a concerning trend in Los Angeles County of increasing infection rates and hospitalizations. We do not have an estimate of when we will hear from the LA County Department of Public Health, and it is possible that they may tell us we are not approved to re-open later in the summer after you have already made travel arrangements.

Q: Can the College could provide a pick-up service from the airport?

A: We ask that students and families arrange their own transportation to and from the airport. Most rideshare companies (Uber, Lyft) are still operating with drivers wearing face coverings, and there also are private car services available.

Move-in Days

As of now, here are anticipated move-in days:

  • Thursday, August 20: Student Leaders (Proctors, Mentors, Head Mentors, NISSO Mentors, SI Mentors, and select members of ASHMC)
  • Friday, August 21: SI students and new international students
  • Saturday, August 22: New students
  • Sunday, August 23: Returning students

All students will be permitted three (3) hours to move-in and may have one (1) person to help them move-in to their residence hall room. Any helper(s) will also be expected to follow COVID-19 policies and protocols and will need to leave campus at the end of the designated three hours.

Move-in Day Procedures

Q: If I arrive at the allotted time to drop my child off, and must stay with my student, how do I park the car that I arrived in after dropping off the bags?

A: We encourage families to review the instructions we send to your students on the process for checking in and to follow signage posted on your assigned day of move-in.

New Students

Due to various program designs, all new students (including SI students and new international students) will be assigned move-in times in the order of arrival of their respective programs.

Returning Students

Returning students will have the opportunity to sign up for move-in time slots based on reduced capacity per building. As of now, we are anticipating four (4) time periods (7–10 a.m., 11 a.m.–2 .p.m, 3–6 p.m., and 7–10 p.m.) from which upperclass students can choose. We will be determining the number of students who are able to move-in on a per building basis, with no more than 25% capacity during each time period. Additionally, if you have a roommate, we will be asking you to move-in at different times. While we are working on the details of this process still, we anticipate that we will have slightly different protocols for suites. After we know how many students will be on campus, we will communicate more details about the move-in times and process.

Special Circumstances

While we are asking you to prepare for more strict arrival and move-in regulations, we will work with people who have extraordinary circumstances (such as international students with limited flight availability) regarding move-in times. Students who have extraordinary circumstances should complete this Move-in time change request for returning students form to request a new move-in time.

Move-in Shopping by Families

Q: On move in day will families be allowed to leave campus to purchase necessities for the residence hall, and deliver them to their student?

A: Families will not be allowed to pick up last-minute items students need after they have arrived to campus. We encourage families to plan ahead and bring these items with them, or utilize our mail room to ship items to campus. On Monday, August 24th, we will begin delivering mail and packages to students in their rooms.

Move-in Quarantine

Q: What will the two-week quarantine look like?

A: A full quarantine in the sense that students will be in their residence halls with very limited contact with others, food delivery, mail delivery, outside scheduled exercise, no mass gatherings of any sort.

Grocery Shopping During Quarantine

Q: Students who stay on campus and do not have meal plans or have very reduced meal plans, how will they be accommodated as they will be making grocery runs (and so will have exposure to others)?

A: During the two-week quarantine, students will not be able to go to the grocery store. It will be a true quarantine and we will ask students to utilize the delivery systems available to them.

Q: Can we order from UberEats during the two week quarantine?
A: Yes, with contactless delivery.

Laundry

Q: Will they be able to do laundry in the first 2 weeks?
A: No. We encourage students to bring enough clothing for 14 days for the quarantine period. Students have sinks in their rooms and can hand wash items if needed. You may want to bring detergent and consider a drying rack for this purpose.

Q: Will there be a laundry service?
A: Possibly but for a fee that the student will pay.

We have compiled a packing list of what to bring to Mudd this fall.

Please make sure to pay extra attention to what you might need during the two week quarantine period.

Q: When will New Student Orientation start?

A: Most of New Student Orientation (NSO) will take place virtually over the summer months. New students will be connected to student leaders, called Mentors, who will guide them through the online orientation program. There will be a NSO program that adheres to social distancing regulations beginning right after move-in on Saturday, August 22 and continuing through Sunday, August 23. More details will be communicated over the summer to incoming students via the Orientation Student Newsletter and the Orientation website. We hope to have a welcoming experience which can help new students get to know Mudd, while keeping everybody as safe as possible.

Q: Are you still having the on campus parent reception in August?

A: No, parent and student orientation will be online this summer, beginning in mid July.

Q: Will Summer Institute be cancelled?

A: Summer Institute will not be canceled. However, the format of the program will be modified and adjusted to adhere to our updated academic calendar and social distancing protocol. This year Summer Institute will begin in late July with online modules and mentor group meetings. The on-campus portion of the program will also be adjusted. As dates become available, we will notify participants via their hmc email so they may continue to plan their arrival to campus.

Q: Will International Students Orientation be cancelled?

A: New International Student and Scholar Orientation (NISSO) will not be cancelled. The Office of Institutional Diversity is working hard to provide an online orientation for students followed by a socially distant on-campus orientation on Saturday, August 22 after their move-in on Friday, August 21

Student Housing

Q: Are parents allowed to “contactless” drop off supplies or food?

A: We are allowing curbside and contactless pick up of groceries and supplies. This does mean that the contactless pickups and drop-offs done by family members should be done quickly and not be a visit.

Q: Who will take care of my ESA if I am too sick to care for it or have to isolate or quarantine?

A: As stated in the HMC Assistance Animal Policy, owners are responsible for the care and supervision of an Assistance Animal at all times. HMC is not responsible for supervising and caring for an assistance animal in the case that an owner is unable to do so. Students should work with Student Accessibility Services at ability@g.hmc.edu with regards to this issue.

Q: Can my partner visit me in my residence hall? What about other guests and family? Will 7C students be able to come to HMC?

A: For the fall, no guests will be permitted to visit on campus, which unfortunately includes fellow students from the other Claremont Colleges. However, an exception will be made for one person who may help students move-in during their assigned time slot in August.

We realize this will have serious implications on students’ social lives, and are working on ways to make sure students can still be a part of an active community. For example, there will be outdoor covered common spaces that we will create as alternatives for students wishing to spend socially distanced time together to study and work collaboratively.

Q: Can students visit each other in dorm rooms?

A: We have different outdoor spaces in the residence hall communities where students can visit. We will begin by not allowing students to visit each other in rooms and will revise that as we are able to.

Q: If we change our mind half-way through the semester, would we be allowed to go back to our homes and stay there for the remaining of the semester?

A: We will permit students to return home to complete the fall semester from there, provided they do not attempt to return to campus after leaving. You will need to notify the Office of Residential Life as well as the Associate Dean for Academic Resources and Student Success as soon as possible before leaving campus so that appropriate arrangements can be made. Please keep in mind that that if you choose to return home, you will be subject to the College’s normal refund policy in regard to room and board.

Q: What percentage of first-years are planning to live on campus?

A: As of July 20, about 77% of incoming first-year students have indicated they plan to enroll and live on campus.

Q: Can I apply to live at home or off-campus while I am an enrolled student at HMC in the fall semester?

A: Students interested in living off-campus or at home and completing their courses through the HMC Remote Learning Semester should indicate their preference on the Enrollment Verification and Housing Form. These students who will be participating in Remote Learning should work with the Academic Deans (academicdeans-l@g.hmc.edu) to review their course schedule and discuss whether courses will be accessible in an online format. Students should be aware that some required courses, including labs, may have in-person components which are not able to be offered in an online format.

Students choosing to live away from campus and participate in Remote Learning due to underlying health conditions are encouraged to register with HMC’s Student Accessibility Services through the AIM Portal or speak with Dean Amy Bibbens (abibbens@g.hmc.edu).

Off-campus Living and Financial Aid

Q: If students choose to stay off campus, will they adversely be impacted by financial aid or housing in Spring?

A: If a student chooses to live off campus their cost of attendance will change and their need-based financial aid will be adjusted accordingly. We prefer each student to reach out to Financial Aid directly at financial_aid@hmc.edu as every student’s financial situation is different. Housing in spring will be available to students who live at home in the fall, however we will not be able to honor your selected room draw room on campus in this circumstance.

Q: Do residence hall rooms have connected vents and is that a cause for concern?

A: Harvey Mudd College Residence Halls each have a different configuration for heating and cooling vents.

  • The Quad dorms (North, South (Marks), West and East) have dedicated units; the vents are not shared with other rooms.
  • Linde Hall is suite style with 3-4 rooms and a connected common lounge area. Each of these suites is served by a common unit with vents going from the dedicated unit to each room and lounge area. Vents are shared within the suite but there is no sharing of vents with neighboring suites.
  • Case Hall has dedicated units; the vents are not shared with other rooms. In some instances, some of the dedicated room units distribute air to the hallway but do not share with other rooms. DSA is working on a plan to manage the isolation protocol for students living in these specific rooms whose dedicated vents distribute air to the hallway.
  • Drinkward Residence Hall does not have any shared units; therefore, vents are not shared between rooms, O’s or suites.
  • Atwood Hall is suite style with 3-4 rooms and a connected common lounge area. Each room has a dedicated unit and each suite area has a dedicated unit. These units do not share vents with other rooms or suites.
  • Sontag Residence Hall is suite style with 3- 4 rooms and connected common lounge area/ kitchen. Each room in the suite has dedicated units to each of the rooms with no shared vents between rooms. All common areas in suites have a dedicated unit with shared vents serving the common areas within the suite. There is no sharing of vents with neighboring suites.

Currently, all guidance from the CDC and LA County Public Health has not indicated any concerns with shared vents in living spaces. The main recommendation is to increase outside air circulation as much as possible by opening doors and windows wherever feasible. All college buildings have well maintained properly functioning ventilation systems and as long as social distancing is adhered to, we do not anticipate the spaces that have shared vents presenting health risks to our students. The WHO had previously reported airborne transmission of the virus could occur only in health care settings through aerosol generating procedures. Most recently, the WHO stated some outbreak reports related to indoor crowded spaces have suggested the possibility of aerosol transmission, combined with droplet transmission, for example, during choir practice, in restaurants or fitness classes in spaces with inadequate ventilation. Furthermore, the WHO stated the proportion of exhaled droplet nuclei or of respiratory droplets that evaporate and generate aerosols, and the infectious dose of viable SARS-CoV-2 required to cause infection in another person are unknown and further testing is required. The College is evaluating and monitoring the implications of this new development. At the present time, we do not believe the residence halls fit into this category, since all residence halls have a properly functioning and well-maintained ventilation system.

Q: Do you anticipate roommates or singles for first years?

A: First year and transfer students will be assigned either single rooms or double rooms (one roommate).

Q: If our roommates aren’t returning for the school year and we are in a triple, would we be forced to have a random roommate in the spring? Alternatively, if we choose to have a single instead, would we get a say in where we live?

A: We would encourage you to reach out to our Residence Life staff to discuss your specific situation and possible solutions. All students should have received an email from Dean Leslie Hughes on July 20 that included a link to a form for students to request room relocations.

Q: Will students already placed in suites that now have empty rooms because their suitemates are not returning on campus this semester have a say in whether someone who requested a single will be be placed into their suite?

A: Most likely, not. If you have specific concerns, please contact the Office of Residential Life.

Q: If I don’t come back to campus for the fall semester, how come the room I pulled during room draw can’t be guaranteed for the spring semester? e.g. If I pulled DW 222C but decided to live off-campus in the fall, how come I can’t go back to that room in the spring?

A: You will be guaranteed housing, but we cannot guarantee the same room that was pulled during room draw. After July 15th, we have a final number of students who will be returning to campus and we will know what our housing occupancy will look like for the fall semester. In order to safely open this fall, we must have reasonable protocols and systems developed for contact tracing and reducing the spread of COVID-19 infections on our campus. Therefore, we need to examine bathroom ratios and reducing density throughout campus to safely do this. Additionally, we will be looking to hold a minimum of 3% of on campus rooms as isolation rooms when students are diagnosed with COVID-19. Therefore, we are working to identify the best ways to do this, and it is likely some students will need to be moved around a little to accomplish these goals. We will not be able to hold rooms for students who may or may not come back in the spring on top of these priorities. For the spring semester, we will reassess what our housing capacity looks like and offer available spaces to students who wish to physically return to campus. We anticipate honoring room draw numbers when offering spaces to students on a housing waitlist so that they may select available rooms based on the best room draw number at that time. We will do our best to help students find rooms that are suitable for their preferences and needs if they decide to return in the spring.

Q: If I have housing accommodations for a single for the fall and I’m choosing to live off campus, would I be able to get the accommodation if I end up returning to campus in the spring?

A: You would need to reapply for the accommodation for the spring semester.

If returning to on campus housing this fall and stored items in the HMC provided pods last spring

HMC will bring back the storage pods that were provided to students last spring in early August this year. Storage items will be delivered to student rooms before students arrive. Any items that were stored without proper labels will be unable to be delivered. There will be a storage space dedicated to these items after students arrive, that students may be able to locate/claim unlabeled items.

As a reminder based on the liability waiver signed when the HMC provided pods were assigned, Harvey Mudd College, Harvey Mudd College’s agents, affiliates, and authorized representatives are not responsible for any loss, liability, claim, expense, or damage to property related to the storage pods or delivery service provided to students.

If living in Arrow Vista and have stored items in the HMC provided pods last spring

HMC will deliver items that were stored by the College last spring to Arrow Vista residents for students to retrieve their items on move-in day (Sunday, August 23).

If returning to on-campus housing or Arrow Vista apartments but secured own storage (not HMC provided)

Students who chose to secure off campus storage (not organized by HMC) for their items last spring may retrieve their items from off campus storage locations on the day that they are permitted to move-in to their residence hall rooms. We ask that students in this situation plan ahead so that they are able to retrieve their items prior to their designated move-in times. Returning students will be able to sign up for move-in times that work with their personal needs, and can fill out this
form to request changes in move-in times based on extraordinary circumstances. If students stored items off campus in groups with other HMC students, we recommend that students sign up for similar times so that they may retrieve off campus storage items together before coming to campus.

If items stored in the HMC provided pods last spring but not returning to on-campus housing in the fall

HMC will store students’ items on campus for students who are not returning to campus this fall. Students will have the option to keep items stored until the spring semester or may schedule a time to retrieve their items from on campus Storage before August 20. Students should contact the Office of Housing and Residential Life if they are not returning to campus and have items in HMC provided storage by emailing reslife@hmc.edu.

Q: What will be the College’s response to students who violate the “visitation” rules for HMC’s campus? What about the other campuses?

A: The College considers these standards to be essential to our ability to physically reopen this fall. The policies exist because we think it’s the only way for us to be able to open, so it’s important to make sure that they are followed.

If students feel like they cannot abide by the policies and protocols, they have the opportunity to make an active choice not to return this fall. Students, staff and faculty in our community all have different circumstances and backgrounds, and we hope to provide a stable, safe environment without putting people at risk.

If a student gets sick, the most important thing is for us to connect them with healthcare and mitigate risk to the rest of the community. Because of this, when a student tests positive for COVID-19, a member of the contact tracing committee will reach out and ask questions about individuals you may have had contact with during the incubation phase of your sickness. The contact tracing committee is not responsible for Honor Code or COVID-19 Policy enforcement, and will be focused on public health, not student conduct enforcement. This is always a public health issue first, and students will be encouraged to honestly report contact with community members, regardless of if they were following COVID-19 Policies.

Our expectation is that those who actively choose to return to the residential campus environment will keep each other accountable and safe. The Student Advisory Board and the DSA are still working together on determining how violations will be handled from a student conduct perspective. We respect the Honor Code at HMC and we recognize that it is important for students to be transparent about their social activities for the purposes of contact tracing. Thus, this sentiment will be taken into consideration when determining sanctions for students who come forward with an unprompted self report regarding COVID-19 policies. We will focus on working with the student first and ensuring everybody on campus is staying safe and healthy. However, in the case of repeated violations, the school will take action to make sure we can maintain the safety of the community. In extreme circumstances, students who continue to violate policies, despite warnings, may be subject to the involuntary leave of absence process as outlined in the Leave of Absence, Withdrawal, and Readmission Policy.

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