1.24.22: Reminder: COVID Arrival & Surveillance Testing

A message sent to all undergraduate and graduate students

Dear Students,

We hope this new semester is off to a great start, and that you’ve begun classes feeling rested and rejuvenated after the break. As we’re all aware, the fall semester—and, for many members of our community, even the winter break—presented some COVID-related challenges. The Lehigh community remains committed to staying together in person on campus, and we know we are capable of taking the necessary steps to ensure a successful spring semester. Thank you in advance for your careful attention and participation. 

As a reminder, all students must comply with the following COVID testing protocols, unless they have tested positive for COVID in the past 90 days and have already reported their results to the HWC. 

You must take your IntelliSwab tests as instructed and report positive pre-arrival and arrival test results to the HWC immediately. If you test positive and do not report your positive result to the HWC, you are likely to test positive result during the university’s mandatory Vault PCR surveillance testing, which begins next week (see below). If this occurs, you will be required to isolate.


Additionally, if you have not yet uploaded your required booster documentation, please do so immediately, following these instructions. Ensuring you have fulfilled these important COVID-related requirements will help us to start the semester strong and prevent you from being identified as noncompliant. Students who are noncompliant with the booster requirement will be prevented from enrolling. 

Pre-Arrival Testing

If you have not yet arrived on campus, please be sure to get a COVID test within two days BEFORE traveling to campus. Either PCR or rapid antigen tests, including at-home tests, are appropriate for this purpose. Please report only positive test results to the HWC Patient Portal by submitting a picture of the result along with a piece of paper with your full name, birth date and the date the test was taken. 

Arrival Testing 

If you have arrived on campus and have not yet done so, please remember that you are required to complete rapid COVID testing upon arrival. You must have a negative test before participating in academic or social activities on campus, unless you have tested positive for COVID in the 90 days prior to your arrival date and have informed the Health and Wellness Center (HWC) of your positive test. If you have tested positive within 90 days of your arrival, you are not required to test. 

Obtaining Your Test

Undergraduate residential students, fraternity and sorority residents, international students, in-season NCAA athletes and early arrivals should have received their InteliSwab™ COVID-19 rapid antigen test kits either in their residences or through their organizations. Specific instructions can be found on the Arrival Testing page

All other undergraduate students living off campus and graduate students living on or off campus who have not recently tested positive must pick up a test kit within 24 hours of arrival on campus at the LUPD station garage, which can be entered from VanBuren Street or the police parking lot. This includes those who have been in the Bethlehem area throughout winter break. Test pickup will be available in the LUPD garage tomorrow, Tuesday, Jan. 25 from 9am through 5pm. Students arriving after Jan. 25 can pick up their test kits inside the LUPD, which is open 24/7. Please enter through the main doors.

You must show your Lehigh ID to receive your test kit. Only Lehigh students are eligible to pick up one test kit for the purpose of arrival testing (kits may not be shared or distributed to non-Lehigh individuals).

Return to your residence and take the test immediately. Instructions for self-administering the test and what to do after you receive the results will be included with the test. 

Reporting Your Arrival Test Results

You do not need to report negative test results. Report only positive test results by submitting a picture of the result along with a piece of paper with your full name, birth date and the date the test was taken, and upload it to the Patient Portal. Reporting your positive result to the HWC will exempt you from the upcoming mandatory surveillance testing.  

Vault PCR Surveillance Testing Begins Jan. 31

Beginning the week of Jan. 31 and continuing through the week of Feb. 21, we will be conducting mandatory surveillance testing of 100% of the undergraduate and graduate student population (including those who are fully vaccinated), with 50% of the student population being selected for testing each week. All undergraduate and graduate students accessing campus in the spring semester should expect to be selected twice for this mandatory testing during this four-week period, unless they have tested positive for COVID in the past 90 days and reported their results to the HWC. Students are required to make and keep all testing appointments when notified of their selection.       

Thank you for your continued cooperation. Best wishes for a safe and successful spring semester. 

—COVID Response Team