Behavior Guidelines

Behavior Guidelines

Mask Guidance and Promotion of Healthy Hygiene Practices


Mask Guidance on TC Campus

TC is "Mask Mindful." In essence, this guidance means that masks will become optional on campus for faculty, staff and students who are vaccinated and boosted. Please keep in mind:

  • As of December 15, 2022, TC strongly recommends all individuals wear high-quality surigical masks when gathered indoors or at crowded outdoor events, in accordance with the recent NYC Department of Health Advisory.
  • The decision to wear a mask belongs solely to the individual. Those who wish to continue masking may do so.
  • Caring for one another’s physical, mental and emotional wellbeing is a core TC community value. It is vital that you respect any individual who chooses to wear a mask without questioning their decision.
  • As we continue to navigate the current Public Health concerns caused by COVID-19, seasonal flu, and RSV, TC is monitoring NYC and NYS public health data. Based on the recommendations of local and state health officials, we will adjust our on campus and response around masking and other mitigation strategies accordingly.
  • Please be assured that the College will continue to follow established health and safety measures, including maintaining air purifiers throughout campus.

Any questions about this guidance may be sent to returntocampus@tc.columbia.edu.

Promotion of Healthy Hygiene Practices

The College recommends the following healthy hygiene practices to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other viruses.

  • If you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19, do NOT proceed to campus. Report your symptons via the Daily Health Screening and wait for a member of the Environmental Health and Safety team to follow up with next steps.
  • Coughing and sneezing etiquette: When you must cough or sneeze, cover your nose and mouth with a tissue or the crook of your elbow. Do not cough and/or sneeze into your hands. Throw away used tissues into no-touch trash cans and immediately wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Hand Washing: Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available. Key times for cleaning hands include:
    • When arriving to the office
    • Before and after work breaks
    • After blowing of nose, coughing, or sneezing
    • After using the restroom
    • Before eating or preparing food
    • After putting on, touching, or removing cloth face coverings
    • Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Hand sanitizer use: If soap and water are not readily available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer in touchless hand sanitizer dispensers that is at least 60% alcohol. The College will ensure that adequate sanitizer and soap supplies are maintained in restrooms, public spaces, building entrances and office entrances.
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