COVID-19 Guidelines

General COVID-19 Guidelines

Penn State has issued rules and precautions which follow, or may in some cases exceed, guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Pennsylvania Department of Health. It is your child’s sole responsibility to follow these protocols and acknowledge that failure to do so may result in your child’s removal from the Program.

As of April 21, 2022, this guidance includes basic health, safety, and sanitation measures (staying home when sick, washing/sanitizing hands often, etc.) in addition to wearing a face mask when directed by Federal, State, or Local directives. Conditions may change if the status of respective counties change (green, yellow, red).

Adherence to these protocols is expected regardless of vaccination status.

Children are not allowed to participate in the Program if they are awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test or if they recently: (1) have been diagnosed with COVID-19; (2) have experienced any symptom of illness which may be associated with COVID-19; or, (3) have been in close contact with anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, is awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test, or has exhibited any symptom of illness which may be associated with COVID-19 or any of its variants.

If a child falls into any of the above categories, they may nevertheless participate in the Program if:

  1. more than five days have passed since their last close contact or symptom; AND,
  2. they have tested negative for COVID-19 on or after the five-day mark

Note: While the current guidelines do not require campers to wear masks in the spaces that will be utilized for this camp, we are fully supportive of mask-wearing for those who choose to do so.

Vaccination Status

  • Although Penn State is a pro-vaccination organization, vaccination is not required for participation in this camp.
  • Staff will only ask about vaccination status if a camper is a close contact of someone who tests positive while at camp, since vaccination and booster status determine whether a close contact needs to quarantine.
    • Please make sure your camper knows their vaccination status and can provide it verbally in case they are a close contact.
  • Camp staff can neither make room assignments based on vaccination status nor share contact information for other campers or their families.
  • A very limited number of single rooms may be available upon request and are not guaranteed.

COVID-19 Infection or Close Contact During Camp

Although COVID-19 cases have declined and we are hoping for a healthy camp season, there is always a chance of a camper being infected with the virus or coming into close contact with an infected person while they are participating in the program. For this residential camp, the following guidelines will be followed.

  • If a camper develops symptoms of COVID-19 during camp, camp staff will call the parent(s)/guardian(s) and inform them of the situation.
  • The camper will be asked to self-administer a rapid test that they have brought to camp.
    • A trained counselor or parent/guardian (via Zoom) will supervise the camper as they self-administer the test.
    • Extra tests will be available for those who need one.
  • If the camper tests positive, they will be immediately isolated from the other participants and asked to wear a mask.
  • Camp staff will call the parent(s)/guardian(s) and inform them of the situation.
  • To mitigate the potential spread to others, we require that a parent, guardian, or designated emergency contact come pick up the camper according to the following timelines:
    • If the camper was driven to camp, pick-up is required within 10 hours. Campers who drove themselves to camp can drive themselves home immediately if feeling well enough to do so.
    • If the camper flew to camp, pick-up is required within 24 hours.
      • This may require parents/guardians to make local lodging arrangements to wait out the isolation period with their child before flying home.
      • Please consider whether you have a trusted friend or family member within driving distance of University Park who could pick up the camper in this situation.
  • In cases where pick-up before bedtime is not possible, the camper will be required to isolate in their dorm room. Their roommate will be moved.
  • Meals will be delivered during isolation, and camp staff, who will be housed on the same floor, will routinely check-in with the camper via cell phone.
  • Note that the camper will be alone in their room and unable to leave until they are picked up other than to use the restroom.
  • If a camper is extremely ill, they will be taken to the nearest healthcare facility.
  • If a camper is a close contact of an infected person during camp and is not fully vaccinated and boosted (if eligible), they will be quarantined, and the aforementioned parent/guardian (or designee) emergency pick-up guidelines will apply.
  • Fully vaccinated and boosted (if eligible) campers are not required to quarantine after a close contact if they have no symptoms. However, they must wear a mask around others for the remainder of camp.
  • Because of the possibility that a camper may be required to isolate or quarantine for a period of time until they are picked up, we ask that you consider your child’s mental and emotional preparedness for this situation as you decide whether to register them for camp.
  • Campers should bring 1–2 rapid COVID-19 tests and well-fitting mask to camp in case they need to be used per these guidelines.

COVID-19 Questions

If you have questions about COVID-19 topics at the University, please review the resources available on Penn State COVID-19 Information website to see if your questions already are answered, or for camp-specific questions or concerns, please reach out to your program manager.

Faculty, staff, and students across all Penn State campuses can contact the Penn State COVID-19 Call Center at 814-865-2121 or submit an online contact form. The Call Center is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (ET) Monday through Friday. The Call Center is closed on Saturdays and Sundays.