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Penn Nursing Updates: Week of December 21st

Dear Penn Nursing Students,

In this holiday season, all of us at Penn Nursing send our warmest wishes to you and your loved ones. As we close 2020, please reflect on all you have accomplished personally and collectively during this challenging time. During the winter break, I encourage you to “unplug” and stay away from e-mail (as much as possible). Please note that most of the University (including the School of Nursing) will be closed for the winter break from December 24th through January 5th. We must be committed to our own self-care and the wellness of others. Taking this time for rest/reflection is very important.

I also recognize that many of our graduate students will continue to work at various health care agencies/hospitals throughout the winter break. Please know how grateful I am to all of you for your immense contributions to the health and healing of our communities this past year. Even though the pandemic will still be with us as we enter 2021, we have greater hope as we begin the new year.

Information Updates

  • A Message to Penn Undergraduates sent on 12/17/2020: Please read the message sent to Penn Undergraduates from President Gutmann online here.
  • Student Group Leaders Spring 2021 meetings: Please save the dates for our spring 2021 virtual Student Group Leaders meetings at 12:00noon:
    • Wednesday, January 27 with Deans Sochalski and Costanzo
    • Wednesday, February 17 with Deans Sochalski and Costanzo
    • Wednesday, March 17 with Deans Sochalski and Costanzo
    • Wednesday, April 21 with Deans Villarruel, Sochalski, Lewis, and Costanzo
    • Wednesday, May 5 with Deans Sochalski and Costanzo
  • Picking up your PennCard: The Office of Academic Affairs is working with the PennCard Center to distribute PennCards to new students (summer 2020, fall 2020, and spring 2021) required to enter the building for simulation in the Spring 2021 semester.  All PennCards will be issued only from Bodek Lounge in Houston Hall between January 6 and January 22, 2021.
  • Penn Nursing’s Plans for the Spring Semester: As you are aware, the cases of COVID-19 continue to rise around the country. At this time, we are still planning to implement our plans for the Spring Semester as outlined online here. Should these plans need to be modified based on University, state, city, and/or health agency guidance, we will be in contact with you over the winter break. We are working closely with our University and clinical partners as things evolve.
  • Quarantine, Testing, and Quiet Period for Spring 2021 – Penn Nursing (as recommended by Student Health Service) will be following the guidelines issued by the CDC, Pennsylvania Department of Health, and Philadelphia City Health Department regarding quarantine/testing (this can be found online here) for return to campus in Spring 2021. This will apply for residents of PA as well, not just those students returning from out of state.
    • All BSN sophomores, juniors, seniors and ABSN students need to return to Philadelphia (on-campus or off-campus housing) between 1/10/21 and 1/14/21 to begin the minimum 7-day quarantine and testing requirements by Penn Wellness/SHS.
    • All BSN freshmen should select their move-in date as directed by Residential and Housing Services. In-person simulation for freshmen will occur in April.
    • All BSN students (including ABSN students) will need to COVID test twice per week. Penn Wellness/SHS will be sending out more information to students.
    • All MSN/DNP students will need to return to campus and quarantine for a minimum 7-days prior to beginning in-person simulation or clinical (if you have left the campus/area). MSN and DNP students will need to test once per week per Penn Wellness/SHS guidelines (unless you are completing your clinicals outside of the tri-state area). The tri-state area includes: Philadelphia and its suburbs, northern DE, Southern NJ. You must complete your test prior to resuming in-person simulation and clinicals in January 2021. The testing sites will open on January 4, 2021. If you have traveled, please be sure you wait 5 days before testing and complete the minimum 7-day quarantine.
    • Information about Quarantine and Testing (named PennCares) for Spring 2021 can be found on this Penn website.
    • Quiet Period – Students contribute to a safe University community and Philadelphia neighborhood at the start of the spring semester. University-wide quiet period will be observed from January 6 through 31, 2021. The University will not plan or conduct group activities.
  • Last Call for Alumni Award Nominations: The deadline is approaching, and nominations will be accepted until Thursday, December 31. Learn more about how to nominate here online.

The Office of Academic Affairs will continue to send regular email announcements in the Spring 2021 semester which can be found archived online.

Please continue to follow all public health guidelines: wash your hands regularly, practice physical distancing with those outside your household, and wear a mask.

Wishing you a restful break, a safe and happy holiday season, and a peaceful and brighter New Year,


Christina M. Costanzo, EdD
Assistant Dean for Admissions & Academic Affairs