Northwestern announces testing requirement following winter break


Daily file photo by Angeli Mittal

Northwestern announced a testing requirement upon return from winter break Tuesday.

Jacob Fulton, Print Managing Editor

All Northwestern students will be required to complete an in-person COVID-19 test during the first week of Winter Quarter classes, the University announced Tuesday.

As students return from winter break, NU will expand hours for its COVID-19 testing centers at both the Evanston and Chicago campuses. The facilities will be open for two additional hours — from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. — for the first two weeks of classes before shifting back to normal hours of operation.

The announcement comes soon after the discovery of the Omicron variant of the virus, which has been labeled a variant of concern. The University also updated its guidance on international travel in light of the variant, encouraging community members to “weigh the necessity” of trips out of the country due to potential health and transmission risks.

NU also encouraged all community members to get booster shots if they are eligible to continue to mitigate the spread of the virus — though a booster mandate is not yet in place.

“We’re going to have to see if we want to make it mandatory,” Provost Kathleen Hagerty told The Daily on Tuesday. “If we need to do it, we’ll do it, but I think we have to get some guidance.”

However, Hagerty said the University doesn’t intend to host on-campus booster clinics at this time. This decision, she said, was made because vaccines have become significantly more accessible since NU last hosted events to administer doses.

Further guidance about winter return policies will be shared ahead of the break in coming weeks.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @jacobnfulton

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