Dear Members of the TC Community,

It is hard to believe the end of the Fall 2021 semester is almost here! With the Omicron variant dominating the news, we want to share some reminders about how to protect yourself and others, especially during the holiday season when many of us will be traveling and gathering with loved ones. We also want to reiterate some important mental health and public safety resources available to you, especially in light of the tragic assaults near campus last week.

COVID-19 Health and Safety Tips for Winter Break

  • Get your COVID-19 booster shot.
    Vaccination is still our best defense against slowing the spread of the virus. TC strongly recommends community members follow CDC guidelines and get a booster shot when you are eligible. Visit to find a vaccination site near you
  • Follow travel guidance.
    Remember that masks are required on public transport, even if you are vaccinated. Familiarize yourself with the CDC’s current travel guidance—as well as guidance from local governments at your destination—before you begin any travel.
  • Be smart.
    The New York City government currently recommends that individuals wear masks in all public indoor settings, regardless of vaccination status, and maintain physical distance when you are unable to wear a mask. If you come in contact with anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 and/or you start to experience symptoms of the virus, follow the CDC’s guidance for quarantine and isolation. Please also alert TC to your situation via the Daily Health Screening, so we may perform any necessary contact tracing.

Your Mental and Emotional Well-being

Though the upcoming winter break will offer a chance to recharge, the effects of the pandemic continue to take a toll. The tragic loss of Columbia Engineering Ph.D. student Davide Giri and attack of Roberto Malaspina, a CU School of Arts Visiting Scholar, also weigh on our minds. Remember, if you need support, students may visit the Student Health and Wellness page and faculty and staff may visit Human Resources’ Self-care, Support and Benefits page to find mental health resources.

Public Safety Services

As previously communicated, TC and CU Public Safety teams, along with the NYPD, are increasing patrols on campus and in the Morningside Park area following last week’s violent incident. Public Safety also offers an on-demand evening shuttle. This shuttle, which replaces walking escort services, provides transportation on request through the Via app, including corner-to-corner and door-to-door service, depending on the hour. The service start time varies based on the time of year, but it runs until 3:00 am each night. The coverage area is from West 103rd Street to West 135th Street. Anyone can access this service by downloading the VIA app through Columbia’s transportation page.

We will continue to provide updates on Spring 2022 policies and procedures related to COVID-19 in the coming weeks. If you have any questions, feel free to email

Lisa Seales
Vice President for Administration 
Co-Chair, COVID-19 Working Group
Hank Perkowski
Vice President for Finance and Operations 
Co-Chair, COVID-19 Working Group