COVID-19 Housing Information

Changes to COVID Isolation and Quarantine Support
On Oct. 31, Gov. Jay Inslee lifted the COVID state of emergency that had been in effect since February 2020. This is another step in the state’s drawdown from the pandemic, and it is being mirrored here at Western. If you have not read the entire statement from Western, please view it here.

What does this mean for residents living on campus?
Currently, students who share a bathroom with six or less students self-isolate in place for five days after testing positive for COVID. Students who share a bathroom with six or more students isolate in Birnam Wood. Beginning on January 2, 2023, all students who test positive for COVID will self-isolate in their room.

How can you prepare for these changes?

  • Review campus Isolation and Quarantine Guidelines, which includes information on what to do if you test positive for COVID or if you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive.
  • Identify your self-isolation plan before returning from winter break or while you are here over winter break. Things to consider include your ability to travel to a permanent residence for your isolation period or the need to isolate in place on campus, access to food, laundry needs, etc.
  • If you do test positive, campus dining offers a sick meal program. The sick meal program provides an opportunity for friends or roommates to use your Western ID to pick up a to-go meal in any of the three dining commons locations (Viking Commons, Fairhaven Commons, Ridge Commons).
    • If you are unable to find anyone to assist you with meal deliveries, you also have the option to mask up and pick up a to-go meal from the dining hall or one of the many retail locations across campus.
  • If you do test positive for COVID and have a need to move to isolation (high-risk residents) or if you have a strong desire to quarantine away from roommates who have tested positive, we have isolation/quarantine housing in Birnam Wood that can be offered on a case-by-case basis as space allows. If you need isolation or quarantine housing in Birnam Wood, please contact your Resident Director or the Resident Advisor/Apartment Advisor on call for your community at night and on the weekends. Transportation will be provided to Birnam Wood. Meals will not be provided; however, residents will continue to have access to the sick meal program in isolation and quarantine housing.

University Residences primary goal is to provide safe residential communities. To promote a healthy and safe living environment, University Residences will continue to partner with public health officials to make changes in response to the COVID pandemic.

COVID Vaccinations

WWU requires all students to be COVID cleared before living on campus. This means students will either submit proof of vaccine completion or submit a COVID vaccine exemption form.

For vaccination info, visit the Student Health Center website.

More information is available here:

There's a lot going on.

How can we help?

It's easy to be overwhelmed with information on various impacts of COVID-19 on the campus community.

Check out the resources below for important information for WWU campus life.

Latest Webinar (View All)

Updated COVID Isolation and Quarantine Guidelines
January 12, 2022

Can't find what you're looking for?

Contact us at 360-650-6565 or housing@wwu.edu.

WWU Testing

Housing works closely with University, local and state health officials to stay up to date on COVID-19 best practices and safety guidelines. For more information, on testing in the residence halls, visit Campus Virus Testing.

Isolation

Depending on room type, students who test positive for COVID will be expected to self-isolate in place or isolate in Birnam Wood. See below for more information:

  1. Students testing positive for COVID residing in a suite or apartment space (shared bathroom with six or less students) are expected to:
    1. Self-isolate in their room, suite, and/or apartment for five days
      1. Residence Life staff will provide Uber Eats vouchers for meal delivery
    2. Roommates of students testing positive should get tested at College Hall, but can remain in their suite or apartment
  2. Students testing positive for COVID residing in a room with community bathroom facilities (shared bathroom with more than six students) are expected to:
    1. Relocate to Birnam Wood for five days
      1. Western’s isolation transport team will provide transportation logistics to Birnam Wood
      2. Residence Life staff will deliver meals to students while in isolation

Whenever possible, we encourage students who live within a close proximity to Western to return to their permanent residence to isolate after testing positive for COVID. Roommates and suitemates of students who have tested positive for COVID should follow CDC guidelines or refer to the Student Health Center's website for information about close contacts.

Spaces will include at a minimum: bed, mattress, dresser and internet access. There will be basic bed linens and towels provided as well as toilet paper, paper towel roll, cleaning spray can, and toiletries. We encourage students to bring what will make them comfortable for the 5 days. 

Since you will be in the room for 5 days, please bring anything you need to be comfortable during that time, as well as plenty of clothing. You will not be able to do laundry during the time you are in isolation.  

If you are moving to isolation, we have a trained team who will be in full PPE to move you and your belongings.

Yes, you can. The transport team can assist with the transport of your animal too. You will need to pack what your animal needs for 5 days and you will be able to utilize certain outside spaces of isolation to care for your emotional support animal. 

Residence Life staff will provide you with Uber Eats vouchers for both lunch and dinner. If you need more food, please contact housingcovidsupport@wwu.edu. 

COVID 2022 Holiday Message

Traveling home for the holidays?  Please remember - we are still in a pandemic and nearly 400 Americans are dying every day from COVID-19.  This means we need to do everything we can to stop the spread of COVID before we gather for the holidays. This includes…

At least three weeks before event:

  • Make sure you and your family are up to date on their flu shot and fall booster.  Free flu shots are available at the Student Health Center as supplies last.  Make your appointment on your MyWesternHealth portal.  COVID boosters are available at local pharmacies and pop-up clinics. See COVID 19 Vaccines for more information. 

One week prior to the event:

  • Wear an N95 mask in public. This will help ensure you don’t bring COVID-19 (or flu) to Thanksgiving dinner. It will also help make sure you don’t miss the event because you’re sick.
  • Test. Get a COVID-19 at home antigen test two days before your event and the morning of the event.
  • If you’re positive a few days before the event, stay home.  Antigen tests are very good at telling us when we’re not infectious anymore. If you get a negative result after a positive, then it is safe to assume that you are no longer contagious and can go to the event.  If you turn positive again, assume you’re infectious until you turn negative again.

Day of the event:

  • If you have symptoms, stay home.  If you have symptoms and test negative, it’s a good idea to re-test in 24-48 hours. But, with flu and other viruses circulating, there’s a good chance it could be something other than COVID-19, too. Just stay home.

We can enjoy the holidays this year while staying healthy: get vaccinated, mask (at least leading up to the event), test and stay home when you’re sick.  This may seem like a lot— especially when it looks like everyone else may not be doing anything— but it really isn’t.