Update regarding mask guidance for spring semester

To the Temple community:

The city of Philadelphia’s Department of Public Health recently released new guidance regarding COVID-19 safety protocols. We are encouraged, both for Philadelphia and Temple University, because this indicates that we are all moving in the right direction. Here at Temple, we thank all of you for getting vaccinated and wearing masks—the two most effective things you can do.

Both COVID-19 cases and positivity rates are down, however, we need to remain vigilant to ensure these trends are enduring and to make sure that we do not see a surge in cases after spring break. We also want to make sure that we get through the remainder of the semester on campus as we have been, and that graduation can take place in person. Therefore, masks will still be required inside campus buildings through next week.

Beginning Monday, March 21, masking will be optional in most campus spaces, including dining halls, residence halls, common areas, nonclinical office spaces, meeting rooms and the Liacouras Center. Masking will be required only in classrooms, labs, studios, healthcare facilities, shuttles or other locations where in-person classes are taking place. Know that we plan to continue to closely monitor the data in the weeks and months to come and we will notify you if circumstances require that we change our plans.

Please remember that even when masks are optional in many campus spaces, everyone should consider their own personal risks and decide for themselves whether they want to continue to wear a mask in all or certain situations. The university continues to recommend masking as a personal protection measure and endorses wearing masks that offer good protection (a surgical mask with multiple layers of nonwoven material), better protection (a surgical mask with a cloth mask over it) and best protection (a KN95 mask).

Additionally, in an effort to protect the most vulnerable members of our community, all of us should carry a mask at all times and be willing to put it on if asked. Mutual respect is of the utmost importance as we move into this next stage of the pandemic.

Our Temple community has shown amazing resilience and agility in responding to some incredibly challenging circumstances. Let’s continue to demonstrate flexibility moving forward. 

Thank you for your time and continued commitment to keeping both Temple and North Philadelphia safe.


Ken Kaiser
Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

Gregory Mandel
Senior Vice President and Provost