Tips for Socializing Safely on Campus

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As students return to campus, many are excited to see the friends they might not have been around since March. But socializing on campus — like everything else — is looking a little different this semester, with new safety guidelines and protocols in place. Here are a few tips for staying safe when reuniting with your friends.

Avoid large gatherings. The likelihood that someone in a group is infected increases as the size of the group grows. While there’s no official number that constitutes a “safe” small group, public health guidance has recommended limiting groups to 10 people.

Follow social distancing protocols. Maintain at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and others when spending time together in person. Face coverings are also required while inside campus facilities and buildings where 6 feet may not always be possible (though not inside one’s own living space). Masks aren’t a substitute for social distancing; the two should be practiced in tandem. And while masks aren’t required outdoors, you’re still safest when wearing one, even if you’re already social distancing.

Hang out outside. There are several outdoor spaces on campus for students to utilize, including Tech Green on East Campus and Burger Bowl and Roe Stamps Recreation Fields (SAC Fields) on West Campus. Note that the SAC Fields are sometimes reserved in advance by different organizations. Many small courtyards and lawns, perfect for small outdoor hangouts, are located between various sets of on-campus dorms and apartments.

When spending lots of time outside, bring lawn chairs, towels, or blankets for comfortable seating. Sunscreen is also highly recommended, especially during the intense heat and sun of late summer in Georgia.

Remember that others will also want to take advantage of outdoor spaces. While it’s important to spread out, don’t do so in a way that takes up more space than you need. If you’re participating in an activity that involves moving around, make sure you don’t cross over into someone else’s personal space.

Avoid sharing food, drinks, and others items. It’s possible that Covid-19 can be spread from an object that has the virus on it. Therefore, it’s safest to avoid sharing anything with your friends, especially food and drinks.

Utilize the contact tracing app NOVID. Georgia Tech is now using NOVID, a contact tracing app that will anonymously notify those who might have been exposed to Covid-19. Keeping the app on standby mode whenever you’re outside of your usual living space can help keep track of those you come into contact with and notify you when someone you’ve been around tests positive for Covid-19. Learn more about the use of the app on campus here.

Regularly sanitize your hands while socializing, and wash them thoroughly once you get home. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone frequently wash their hands, especially after having recently returned from a public place. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Get tested regularly. Consistent testing is one of the most important parts of containing the spread of the coronavirus on campus. Georgia Tech offers free surveillance testing for asymptomatic students at multiple locations on campus, and students are encouraged to get tested once a week. Register for testing at and see testing site locations here. Symptomatic students can get tested at Stamps Health Center.



  • Workflow Status:Published
  • Created By:gwyner3
  • Created:08/26/2020
  • Modified By:Kristen Bailey
  • Modified:08/27/2020