Panther Central

Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find answers to frequently asked questions for University-owned Housing for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Spring Move-In

When will spring term move-in begin?

Spring move-in will begin on January 29 and will continue on January 31, February 3, and February 5. This phased return supports the de-densification of campus and allows students to move-in on the same day as members of their cohort. Find your assigned spring move-in date. 

Where can I find my assigned spring move-in date?

Find your spring move-in date here. Dates have been carefully scheduled to ensure physical distancing and adherence to safety precautions in place for the well-being of our Pitt community. Students must move in on their assigned date, and we cannot accommodate changes at this time. If you cannot move in on your assigned day, contact Panther Central. Do not plan to move into your on-campus residence until 24 hours after you receive your negative test result. If you receive your result less than 24 hours before your assigned move-in day, move in on the next scheduled Arrival day. 

Can I change my assigned spring term move-in date?

No. Move-in dates have been carefully scheduled so that residents will move in on the same day as their floor and or other students living near them. Students must move in on their assigned date, and we cannot accommodate changes at this time. If you cannot move in on your assigned day, contact Panther Central

Can I return to campus earlier than my assigned move-in date?

No. Move-in dates have been carefully scheduled so that residents will move in on the same day as their floor and or other students living near them. We strongly encourage all students to move in on their assigned date and cannot accommodate early move-ins at this time

When will spring term classes begin? 

Spring classes will begin on January 19, 2021 using the Flex@Pitt model. See the full Academic Calendar. 

Will I receive a proration adjustment for my spring housing and dining? 
  • Yes, prorations for housing and dining costs will be calculated based on the date housing was originally scheduled to open (January 10) to the newly announced date (January 29). Proration adjustments will be posted to PittPAY. If the adjustment creates a credit balance on a student’s account, it will be sent to the eRefund bank account you have designated on the student side of PittPAY.  If you are not enrolled in eRefunds, log into PittPAY now to designate where your student account refund should be deposited.  
  • If you do not to return to campus for the spring term, your housing and meal plan charges will be reversed provided that you notify Panther Central of your cancelation before February 5, 2021. 

  • Similarly, meal memberships will be prorated for meal swipes. Dining Dollars will not be adjusted, and the full amount will remain on your account. 

If I am not returning to campus for the spring term, how can I cancel my housing and dining? 

Follow these instructions to complete the housing withdrawal process by February 5, 2021. You are required to notify Panther Central of your cancelation via the form and to indicate your anticipated move-out date on the form. You will receive further instructions from Panther Central.

If I am moving out of on-campus housing for the spring, can I have helpers? 

Students are allowed one helper to assist with move-out. You must contact Panther Central via email to make arrangements before you depart for campus. 

Will I need to shelter in place when I move in for the spring term? 

Yes, you need to shelter in place for at least seven days prior to traveling to campus. After arriving on campus, students will shelter in place until at least February 15. 

Is Ship2Pitt available for spring term move-in? 

No, Ship2Pitt is not available for the spring term. 

How can I get my spring term course materials? 

The University Store on Fifth has multiple options available for you to easily and conveniently get your spring course materials. Learn more on their website

 

COVID-19 Testing for Spring Move-In

Can I use a test from a different provider and if so, how do I share the result with Pitt? 

No. The Quest test is provided to you free and will be coordinated with Pitt. Use of any other testing provider may delay your ability to arrive on campus. 

How do I get my COVID-19 test and send the results to Pitt?

Pitt has partnered with Quest to provide students with COVID-19 tests. Visit the Quest website to create an account and order your test. Follow the instructions on the Quest site to receive and return your test. Pitt will receive the results. 

How do I get my COVID-19 test result? 

Your test result will be available on the Quest website in your account. Do not plan to move into your on-campus residence until 24 hours after your negative result is received. 

If I have had a COVID-19 vaccination, do I still need to take a test before returning to campus? 

Yes. All students are required to follow guidance from the COVID-19 Medical Response Office and provide a negative test result before they can move into university housing.

If I have recently received a negative COVID-19 test result, do I still need to take a test before returning to campus. 

Yes, unless you have been tested in the last week before arrival, you are required to take another test. All students are required to follow guidance from the COVID-19 Medical Response Office and provide a negative test result before they can move into university housing. 

If I return to campus before I receive my test result, will I be allowed to move into my university residence?

No. All students are required to follow guidance from the COVID-19 Medical Response Office and provide a negative test result before they can move into university housing. If you return to campus without a negative test result, you will immediately move into alternate housing with other students who have not complied until you can provide a negative test result. 

What do I do if my test results are delayed and I have not received my COVID-19 test result prior to traveling for my assigned move-in day? 

Do not depart for campus until you have received a negative test result. If you miss your scheduled move-in date due to a delay in test results, please plan to move into your campus residence on the next scheduled move-in day after you receive your negative test result. Find spring move-in dates.  

What do I do if I have not received my test results before the last scheduled move-in day?

If the test is performed and sent to Quest as directed, the results should return in time for move in. However, if you have not received results, contact Panther Central.

What do I do if my COVID-19 test is positive?

If your test is positive, Student Health Services will contact you with next steps. 

What should I do if I am moved to alternate housing and need items from my permanent campus residence? 

Email Panther Central at panthercentral@pc.pitt.edu

 

General Questions:

 

\What does de-densification mean?

A decrease in the density or concentration of something. To de-densify student housing, we will spread out the number of people per square foot to support a safer environment. This plan allows the university to provide housing placements to all students who have fall housing guarantees following required CDC and university safety protocols. We are doing this in our communal bathroom buildings that have doubles, triples, and quads.  

What hotels will be used for student housing in the 2020-2021 academic year? 

Pitt will partner with three hotels: Residence Inn Pittsburgh University Medical Center on Bigelow Blvd., Residence Inn Pittsburgh University Place on Forbes Ave., and Wyndham Pittsburgh University Center on Lytton Ave., utilizing the entire hotel at each location only for Pitt students.

Are hotels for students only?

Yes, the University will utilize the entire hotel at each location for Pitt students, providing a dedicated housing experience just like traditional residence halls with a Resident Assistant and a Resident Director.

What are the advantages of living in a Pitt Experience partner property?

Most students who reside in a partner hotel will have a roommate. They will also have a private bathroom for their residence vs. communal bathrooms found in most residence halls and enjoy quality accommodations. Most importantly, the same commitment, care and attention given to students in residence halls will be provided to students who reside in a Pitt Experience partner property to ensure a positive, fully integrated student experience. This support will include a Resident Assistant, Resident Director, student life activities, 24/7 security, and campus shuttle.

Will hotel properties be on or near campus?

All hotels are within a 15-minute walk of the Cathedral of Learning, comparable to many other residence halls including Forbes, Lothrop, and Sutherland Halls. Students residing in hotels will also have access to campus shuttle services for transportation to/from campus for classes, dining and student activities. 

What will be in place to support student safety in hotel properties? 

All properties will have 24/7 security in place, along with a Resident Assistant and Resident Director. Campus shuttles, as well as after-hours SafeRider services, will be available to provide transportation services to/from campus. 

Will students who reside in hotel properties have a different academic experience?

No, the experience will be just like living in a traditional residence hall with a Resident Assistant on each floor. The Flex@Pitt academic experience will be available to all students, regardless of where they live on campus or off campus, which allows for in-person, remote, synchronous and asynchronous learning approaches. 

How do lock outs/lost keys work at the hotels? 

Each partner property will have 24/7 University security assistance and the ability to help if you are locked out of your room or lost your key. Learn more about what you can expect at your housing location.

Will I receive a refund on housing/dining if the University closes?

We do not intend to close University operations and have comprehensive plans in place to support the health and safety of the Pitt community. With this in mind, in the event of extraordinary circumstances that require the closure of residence and dining halls, we will make every effort to work with students and families on housing/dining pro-rata reductions as completed in spring 2020.

Will these hotel leases carry into the Spring semester or will students be expected to relocate at that time? 

We anticipate that these arrangements will continue throughout the 2020-21 academic year.

Guests in University Housing:

Am I allowed to have guests in my assigned University housing room?

Yes, but students are urged to limit the number of close contacts, and are required to limit guests per our Occupancies for Guests in University Housing Chart. In addition, permitted guests only include those students who are residents of your assigned building. Pitt affiliates living in other locations (on or off campus) are not permitted to enter your assigned building or your assigned room. Likewise, non-Pitt affiliates are not permitted to enter your assigned building or assigned room.  

How many guests am I permitted to have in my assigned room?

The number of guests permitted in an assigned room varies by building and room size, please refer to our Occupancies for Guests in University Housing Chart for more detail.  

Are my guests required to wear a face covering while in my assigned room?

Yes, our health and safety standards require that guests always wear a face covering. Face coverings should only be removed while eating. 

What are the consequences for failing to abide by the University's health and safety standard and protocols generally and specifically related to guests in assigned University housing? 

Failing to comply with guidance set forth by the University, federal, state and/or local authorities regarding public health and/or safety is a violation of the Student Code of Conduct. Potential sanctions include a written reprimand up to and including dismissal from the University.

Where can I find the University's health and safety guidelines, as well as other information related to housing, dining, etc.? 

Visit Pitt's coronavirus site for the most up-to-date information regarding the University's ongoing response to the current pandemic. 

 
Where can I report a concern regarding coronavirus on campus or refer a student to the Office of Student Conduct?

You can report a concern regarding coronavirus on campus or refer a student to the Office of Student Conduct via Pitt's coronavirus site

What are the maximum occupancy limits at given time in individual student rooms?

Provided guests can maintain social distancing and wear a face covering, the following Occupancies for Guests in University Housing Chart lists the maximum occupancies for all of our on-campus accommodations.

 

Housing Policies:

Will the same Pitt housing policies apply to the hotels as the residence halls?

Yes, students will be required to follow all policies and protocols whether living in a residence hall or Pitt Experience partner property.

Can I have guests in my residence hall or my hotel?

Guest visitation rules will follow CDC, ACHD and University guidelines. All requirements are subject to change based on safety protocols.

Will students have to share a residence hall or hotel room?

This will vary by accommodation, based on required health and safety protocols for each space. 

What other steps are being taken to de-densify housing areas, including study lounges and laundry rooms?

Access to these spaces will be modified to follow current required health and safety protocols throughout residence halls and Pitt Experience partner properties. Additional details will be provided in the coming weeks.

If I am unable to attend the fall 2020 semester, will I be able to keep my housing guarantee?

If you will be a guaranteed First-Year student or Sophomore for the 2020-2021 academic year and you meet the applicable housing deadlines, you will have a housing guarantee for the 2021-2022 academic year. 

If I take the 2020-2021 academic year off, will I be able to keep my housing guarantee?

If you remain a registered student for the 2020-2021 academic year, you will retain your housing guarantee.

If I take the fall semester off, will I keep my selected room for the spring semester?

No. Housing will be available for you, but you may be assigned to a new bed space for the spring semester. 

I was planning to study abroad for the 2020-2021 academic year. Is housing available for me?

If you were given a housing guarantee in January 2020, you will have housing for the 2020-2021 academic year.  

 

Security

What will be in place to support student safety in hotel properties? 

All properties will have 24/7 security in place, along with a dedicated Resident Assistant. Campus shuttles, as well as after-hours SafeRider services, will be available to provide transportation services to/from campus. 

Will security oversee the entire hotel?  

24/7 welcome attendants will be accessible in each hotel lobby, as they are in each residence hall lobby. 

Who can I contact if I see any irresponsible activity happening in my neighborhood, including excessive noise or litter?

Students are required to follow the University’s Code of Conduct at all campus locations, including all residence halls and Pitt hotel properties. Should you observe a violation, please use the “Report a Concern” button at the top of the Environmental Health and Safety website, or submit a tip using the RAVE Guardian mobile safety app. 

 

Dining Services

Where can I find current dining hours and locations? 

Find current hours of operation as well as locations on our campus dining website.  

When will I be able to dine-in at campus dining locations? 

We are as eager and excited to have dine-in service available as our students; we will be following guidelines from the COVID-19 Medical Response Team and the Pennsylvania Governor’s office. You can find CMRO updates here.

Will all of my meal membership’s dining dollars be available?

Yes, you will retain all of the dining dollars attributed to your plan; plus, any remaining dining dollars from the fall term will roll over to this term as long as you continue to have a meal membership.

What amount of my meal membership charges are being prorated? 

Meal membership prorations were based on the difference between the number of week that students were expected to be on campus for the spring 2021 term and the number of weeks that students will actually be on campus this term. 

Where can I find information on allergy-based dining and special diets?

We have a full-time Registered Dietitian on-staff who is always available to help guide students to both menus and venues that are best suited for them. Contact our dietitian here. 

What safety precautions are in place in the dining halls?

The University of Pittsburgh and Compass Group have instituted a number of measures so that the campus community can safely pick up to-go meals across campus. See the latest updates on our dining website.