Testing

All students who are approved to be on campus are required to participate in frequent COVID-19 testing. Testing determines campus prevalence and identifies individual cases.

At this time, faculty and staff should continue to take advantage of the testing resources within the Greater Rochester community.

Ongoing Student COVID-19 Test Requirements

In order to ensure the safety of our campus, RIT is conducting weekly testing of students. Testing determines campus prevalence and identifies individual cases. Students are likely to be selected for testing multiple times this semester.

If you have completed your spring circulation requirements and are approved to be on campus, you are expected to make an appointment when invited for a COVID-19 test. You will schedule your test for a day and time that is convenient for you. Invitations are sent on Sunday and testing appointments are available Monday-Saturday. If you have signed the attestation, indicating you do not plan to circulate on campus for the spring semester, you will not be expected to participate in Tiger Testing.

Students will receive an email from tigertesting@rit.edu that will “invite” students to make an appointment through CampusGroups; however, keep in mind that testing is mandatory.

During your appointment, you will conduct a painless, self-administered nasal swab test in front of a trained specialist. We are administering two types of tests on campus: a rapid antigen test or a PCR test. The email invitation will indicate which type of test that will be administered for the upcoming week of testing. RIT covers the cost of the test.

Alternate Testing and Exemptions

Students may choose to schedule a test off-campus if that is best for their schedule. Students testing at an off campus site will be required to complete the COVID-19 Alternate Testing and Exemption Form to notify RIT of their intended testing plans. They will then be required to submit their COVID-19 test result. Instructions will be sent to the student via email upon completion of the COVID-19 Alternate Testing and Exemption Request Form.

Students in isolation or quarantine and students who tested positive in the past 90 days will be exempt from testing.

Learn more about alternate testing and exemptions

Testing Process and Compliance

A campus-wide testing effort to identify individual cases and determine the prevalence of COVID-19 is underway. Students who are invited to participate in a Tiger Testing window are required to sign up for a testing time and show up for the test. Any students who fail to report for testing are considered non-compliant for this requirement. RIT has built a scaled response plan, which includes system access interruption (including MyCourses and Zoom) and referrals to the Student Conduct Office, which may lead to suspension or removal from housing, for those not in compliance.

Students Experiencing Symptoms

This testing is not intended for those who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. Students experiencing symptoms should contact the Student Health Center at 585-475-2255 or log into the RIT Wellness Portal to access the patient chat.


Tiger Testing Frequently Asked Questions

Tiger Testing is mandatory for all students, including those who live on and off campus, who are approved to circulate on campus for the spring semester. This does not include students who have signed the attestation through the Spring Circulation Plan process, indicating they will not be on campus for any reason during the spring semester.

Students may choose to get tested at an off-campus location, but are required to submit their test results. To begin this process, students must complete the COVID-19 Alternate Testing and Exemption Request Form. They will then be required to submit their COVID-19 test results via the RIT Wellness Portal. Instructions will be sent to the student via email upon completion of the COVID-19 Alternate Testing and Exemption Request Form.

Students may choose to get tested at an off-campus location, but are required to complete the COVID-19 Alternate Testing and Exemption Request Form. They will then be required to submit their COVID-19 test results via the RIT Wellness Portal. Instructions will be sent to the student upon completion of the COVID-19 Alternate Testing and Exemption Request Form.

Students who are unable to participate in Tiger Testing must complete the COVID-19 Alternate Testing and Exemption Request Form. Requests will be reviewed by the Tiger Testing Team.  Approved alternate testing options and exemption rationales can be found on the Tiger Testing website.

We advise that you limit travel throughout the spring semester, in order to protect the health and safety of our community. If you do need to travel at any point and are unable to schedule your weekly COVID-19 test on campus, you will need to complete the COVID-19 Alternate Testing and Exemption Request Form and will be required to submit your COVID-19 test results via the RIT Wellness Portal. Instructions will be sent to the student upon completion of the COVID-19 Alternate Testing and Exemption Request Form.

RIT has been able to secure both PCR and Antigen tests for our community’s use. The two tests have different advantages and disadvantages. By using these high quality tests in combination, we can leverage the benefits of both tests. Students will not have an opportunity to select the type of test they wish to receive, however they will be notified of the type of test that they will receive in the Tiger Testing email invitation.

Find more information about Tiger Testing and schedule an appointment on the CampusGroups Tiger Testing website.

Wastewater Testing

Due to the fact that the virus is shed in feces within three days of infection and symptoms can take much longer to present, wastewater testing is an important early detection tool. While a sample of wastewater cannot determine an exact number of people with COVID-19, it indicates whether incidence of the disease is increasing, decreasing, or unchanged. If a spike is detected in one of the sampling areas, targeted testing will be conducted to identify and isolate infected individuals.

Pre-Arrival COVID-19 Test Requirements for Spring Semester

All faculty, staff, and students are required to get a COVID-19 test on or after January 7, 2021, and must provide evidence of a negative result before circulating on campus for any reason.

New York state has set up a free testing site at Monroe Community College. Details and registration are available online, or call 888-364-3065 to schedule an appointment. You can also contact your personal health care provider or find other testing locations.

Acceptable COVID-19 tests include PCR tests on saliva, nasal swabs or nasopharyngeal swabs and Antigen tests on saliva, nasal swabs or nasopharyngeal swabs. Antibody tests are not accepted.

In addition to adhering to RIT COVID-19 test protocols, you must review and adhere to the New York State Travel Advisory Guidelines.

Students

Upload an image of your test results to the Student Health Center using the COVID-19 Test Spring Semester 2021 form available through the Wellness Portal. The image must include your full name, date of birth, and date and type of test. All test results must be uploaded to the portal, whether they are positive or negative.

If you have tested positive within 12 weeks prior to the start of classes (on or after November 2, 2020), you are not required to complete a COVID-19 test. Instead, you are required to upload proof of prior infection and/or your release from isolation letter in lieu of a COVID-19 test.

Employees

Test results should be uploaded to Oracle on or before January 25, 2021. A new, negative COVID-19 test is required even if you work during the holiday break period and/or do not travel outside the Finger Lakes region during the holiday. Employees may report to work without a new negative COVID test or with results-pending through January 24, 2021. Employees should contact their manager with any questions specific to their personal situation. All test results must be uploaded to Oracle, whether they are positive or negative.

If you have tested positive and have uploaded the positive results information into Oracle within 12 weeks prior to the start of classes (on or after November 2, 2020), you are not required to complete a COVID-19 test. You do not need to provide additional documentation. Communication on the release from isolation or quarantine is provided to both you and your supervisor from Rochester Regional Health (RRH).

Isolation and Quarantine if Ill or Exposed

Isolation will be mandated for anyone who tests positive and anyone deemed to have been in close contact with a confirmed case. If directed to quarantine or isolate, students will not be allowed to leave their quarantine or isolation space for 14 days from last exposure unless released earlier by the local public health department or designee. During this period, students will undergo active monitoring by the Student Health Center and self-monitor for potential symptom development.

Students in quarantine and isolation are being supported with meal delivery, and trash pick-up and laundry services are available upon request. RIT has designated its property at 175 Jefferson Road, the former Radisson hotel, for students in quarantine or isolation.

Daily Health Screen

To assist with symptom monitoring, faculty, staff, and students must complete the RIT Daily Health Screen every day, seven days a week, whether or not they are coming to campus. The screen will provide users with instructions on how to proceed if they are experiencing symptoms or have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19. If someone experiences symptoms after completing the Daily Health Screen, they must complete it again that same day.

Access the screen online

Learn more about the Daily Health Screen

Contact Tracing

Location Check-In: Location Check-In posters are being installed across campus for contact tracing. The posters are printed with QR codes embedded with a URL and location-specific information. Scanning the QR code with a smartphone (by opening the device’s camera app and pointing the camera at the code) opens the check-in website and automatically populates the “area” (room, bus, etc.) and “location” fields. The large-scale QR codes are meant to be scanned from a distance to encourage physical distancing. Area and location information printed on the bottom of the poster can be entered manually on the website using a browser on the smartphone or computer. The secured data is restricted for contact tracing by authorized personnel.

Sample poster and ordering instructions

Wireless Access Data: As a matter of course, RIT does not generally capture or retain wireless access point data except to the extent required to provide such access to the RIT network. This data shows roughly where a person may be on campus as a result of their device(s) connecting to wireless access points on the RIT network. The wireless access data retained by RIT is securely stored in the University’s secure and FERPA-compliant on-campus data center. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and in support of contact tracing requirements, this data may be used by the Monroe County Department of Health contact tracers for contact tracing efforts to help identify members of the RIT community who may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 symptoms as a result of being in proximity to that person during potential exposure periods.

Learn more about data privacy

COVID-19 Dashboard

RIT COVID-19 Dashboard

Using data from multiple sources to illustrate and track various metrics, the RIT COVID-19 Dashboard will inform RIT’s decision-making related to campus operations and the RIT COVID-19 Alert Levels. The dashboard includes information on the number of positive cases, number of students in quarantine and isolation, and quarantine/isolation bed availability on campus.

Learn more about the dashboard

Quarantine, Isolation, and Contact Tracing

Information on quarantine and isolation due to illness or exposure, as well as the New York State Travel Advisory, is available on the Quarantine and Isolation page. Information on RIT's contact tracing efforts is available on the Contact Tracing page.

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Frequently Asked Questions

In lieu of a negative COVID-19 test, faculty, staff, and students can provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination.

RIT employees can find information about COVID-19 testing, testing options in Rochester, and other information on the Information for Employees webpage.

You will not be permitted to circulate on campus or move into a university-owned residence until a test is taken and negative results are submitted to the Student Health Center.

If you are coming from an area where you cannot get a test, you can search your current location to find a COVID-19 test location near you. Students waiting for test results will need to quarantine off-campus until results are available.

We recommend contacting your local county or state health department for a list of testing resources in your area. Many primary care physicians are aware of testing availability as well. You can also search your current location to find a COVID-19 test location near you.

Testing at the Student Health Center is only for students with symptoms of COVID-19 illness, including: fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea. Testing at the Student Health Center requires an appointment with one of our providers.

Yes. The Student Health Center will review and approve your negative COVID-19 test result or release from isolation letter and/or proof of prior infection (if you have tested positive on or after November 2, 2020). Please allow up to three business days for this process.

Your updated status will appear in the RIT Wellness Portal and on your customized Spring Circulation Checklist available on the MyLife Portal.

Students planning to come to the RIT campus during the spring semester must take a COVID-19 test. This includes coming to campus for classes, laboratory work, meetings, dining, socializing, etc. If you do not plan to come to campus AT ALL during the spring semester, you must sign the Attestation Statement as part of your Spring Circulation Plan, available on the MyLife Portal. By signing this form, RIT reserves the right to deny your access to campus.

If your plans change and you need to come to campus, please cancel your attestation via the MyLife Portal. You will receive a prompt to submit a new Spring Circulation Plan indicating that you plan to be on campus.

If you receive a positive COVID-19 test result, the health department in the state in which you tested in will reach out to you regarding the need for isolation until the infection clears. This may mean your arrival to RIT is delayed. We are prepared to support your educational efforts if this must occur.

Tests prior to arrival are covered by the individual. Surveillance testing of students throughout the semester will be covered by the university. We recommend checking with your local testing locations and insurance company regarding payment options. If you are unable to pay for a COVID-19 test out-of-pocket and it is prohibiting your return to campus, contact our Case Management team at casemanagement@rit.edu.

The RIT COVID-19 Alert Level system will enable RIT to respond quickly to rapidly evolving health conditions. COVID-19 alert levels will be posted daily on the RIT homepage and RIT Ready homepage. An email will be sent to RIT students, faculty, and staff through the Important Institute Announcements category of Message Center if the campus status elevates. All messages that are sent through Message Center will also be posted to the RIT Ready Communications page. RIT social media accounts will also be used to disseminate information, including daily on Twitter.

We created a public dashboard populated with metrics to inform decisions that will be made regarding the COVID-19 alert levels. This will help us better assess how to modify current practices and protocols to support the health and safety of the RIT community.

Yes, once testing data has been reconciled, faculty will be notified of students enrolled in their classes who have not complied with university requirements.

Individuals exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 or who have been in close contact with individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 should speak with their personal health care provider (employees) or the Student Health Center (students). Need for testing, quarantine, and isolation will be determined based upon each individual’s situation and risk assessment. 

Testing for cause (having symptoms or significant exposure) and randomized surveillance testing for students will be overseen by the Student Health Center, in an on-campus testing area dedicated to COVID-19 testing. Faculty and staff will be directed to their personal provider for testing or a New York State Department of Health testing site. Most insurance covers testing for cause.

Any student reporting symptoms via the Daily Health Screening will be directed to contact the Student Health Center to be assessed. Assessment will include a review of symptoms and their health history. If a symptomatic student does not reach out directly, a staff member from the Student Health Center will make contact with the student. If testing is recommended and/or symptoms are of sufficient concern, students will be placed in precautionary quarantine or isolation, depending upon the circumstances. Testing for cause (having symptoms or significant exposure) will be available on campus at the Student Health Center. In the event of a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19, contact tracers will interview the student and determine whether there are additional individuals who need to be placed in quarantine or isolation. RIT will have trained contact tracers to assist the Monroe County Department of Health.