COVID-19 Response and Reopening

COVID-19 Health and Safety

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Health and Safety

COCC's Face Mask Policy

As of June 30, 2021, COCC will no longer require face masks on any campus, except in instructional settings where face masks were required before the coronavirus pandemic, and while riding in an official COCC van or vehicle, per CDC and OHA guidelines for public transportation. In instructional settings and on COCC vehicles, all individuals will be required to wear a face mask over their nose and mouth, regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination status.

The College strongly recommends the use of face masks across its campuses for those who are unvaccinated or not yet fully vaccinated.

This face mask policy is subject to change, and will be frequently reassessed based on local, state, and national public health recommendations.

COCC supports all individuals who choose to continue to wear masks in any campus setting. There are many reasons why one might continue to wear a face mask to reduce the risk of COVID-19. People who should take extra precautions include those who are unvaccinated, at increased risk for severe illness, living with at-risk dependents, pregnant, etc. Mask-shaming has no place at COCC, and we honor everyone's personal choice to continue to wear a mask. As the College and the state transitions away from COVID-19-related restrictions, please continue to practice COCC's principles of community: respect the rights and dignity of all persons, be compassionate and considerate, and act with empathy. 

Need a mask? Just ask! The College will provide free disposable masks to any student, employee, or visitor to campus who needs one.

A recommended "mask" for use in preventing the spread of COVID-19 is defined by the CDC as having two or more layers of washable, breathable fabric; completely covering your nose and mouth; fitting snugly against the sides of your face without gaps; and having a nose wire to prevent air from leaking out of the top of the mask. The College also recommends an FDA-cleared surgical mask (fluid-resistant, disposable, and loose-fitting).

The CDC does not recommend gaiters, plastic shields, or masks with exhalation valves or vents as a substitute for other kinds of recommended masks. The College does not endorse bandanas as a substitute for other types of recommended masks.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Face Masks

Where can students get a free mask if they need one?

On the Bend campus, please visit the Bookstore (ring bell at the receiving door at the back of Newberry Hall).

On the Redmond campus, please visit the reception desk (Building 3 – MATC).

On the Madras and Prineville campus, please visit the campus reception desk.

Where can faculty and staff get a mask if they need one?

All COCC faculty and staff will receive a reusable cloth mask prior to the start of Fall Term. Additional disposable masks for employees who may need one will be available at the Bookstore on our Bend campus, Building 3 on the Redmond Campus, and at the reception desks on both the Madras and Prineville campuses.

I am being harassed for wearing my mask. What should I do?

COCC's commitment to diversity and inclusion ensures that everyone has a right to a learning and work environment free of discrimination. COCC takes any situation of harassment or discrimination seriously and will not tolerate such actions. If you experience or witness this type of harassment, please report them immediately. 

Students are welcome to contact Christy Walker, Director of Diversity, and/or Andrew Davis, Director of Campus and Student Life for support. Employees can also contact their supervisor, and/or Human Resources.

Still have questions? Please contact

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COVID-19 Health Information

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the most important health and safety precautions I can take?

Please refer to and bookmark COCC’s one-page health and safety action guide for students.

What if I think I have COVID-19?

Each day before coming to campus, please perform COCC's symptom self-check. If you believe you may have COVID-19 or the related symptoms and you are not on campus, please remain at your place of residence, contact your heath provider, alert your COCC instructor or supervisor, and get tested.

If you are on campus, immediately return to your place of residence or, if you cannot leave right away, you will be guided to one of COCC's designated isolation areas until you can safely return to your place of residence or be transported to a health care facility.

What if I test positive for COVID-19?

Alert your COCC instructor or supervisor immediately. You should remain in your place of residence for at least 10 days after the illness onset and 24 hours after your fever is gone (without use of fever-reducing medicine) and follow the guidance from your health care provider.

What if I've been exposed to someone who has COVID-19?

Alert your COCC instructor or supervisor immediately. Remain in your place of residence, contact both your primary care provider and your local public health authority.

  • Deschutes County Public Health: 541-322-7418
  • Jefferson County Public Health: 541-475-4456
  • Crook County Public Health: 541-447-5165

Who will contact me if I've been exposed to the virus, and how will they contact me?

COCC will notify the local public health authority of any known confirmed cases on the COCC campus. The College, in coordination with the local health authority, manages contact tracing and COCC will reach out if it is believed that you have had sustained exposure to the virus. It is important that anyone who is exposed to COVID-19 or is a confirmed case contact their instructor or supervisor as soon as possible upon knowing.

How do I get tested and what if I can't afford testing or treatment?

Many health providers in Central Oregon are now offering expanded testing for COVID-19. This directory from Oregon Health Authority can help you find a location for testing.

Still have questions? Please contact