COVID-19 Response (11.20.20 Update)

Look Ahead to Spring 2021!


Thank you to the entire Mills community for working together this fall to launch our first full online semester in the College's 168-year history. The creativity of our faculty and staff and the patience and resilience of our students is inspirational. The results speak for themselves—Mills has experienced almost no cases of COVID-19 on our campus.

While Alameda County had moved to the moderate "orange tier" from the State of California's "Blueprint for a Safer Economy," due to surges in coronavirus infections, the county moved back to the purple tier on November 18, 2020. We encourage you to continue following the health and safety guidelines that mitigate the risk of spreading the virus as we focus on providing you with the best education possible.

What You Can Expect

Classes Will Continue to be Primarily Online.

Additional In-Person Academic Experiences may be Available.

Housing Remains Open on a Single-Occupancy Basis.

The Campus Will Continue to be Closed to the Public Until Further Notice.

As the state and county public health guidelines evolve, we will be looking at ways to open up more academic and co-curricular opportunities for students when it is safe to do so. Here's an overview of what you need to know:

Please check this page frequently as public health orders and restrictions are subject to change.

What You Need to Know

Health & Safety Guidelines

As we respond to the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on our health, Mills has developed guidelines to be followed by everyone on campus. These measures ensure that we are adhering to public health mandates to mitigate the spread of the virus. As the healthcare situation evolves, we will adjust our policies and practices to protect our community. Please visit our health and safety guidelines page for details.

Student wearing mask
Wear a mask.

Anyone over the age of two must wear a face covering or mask as mandated by the State of California and Alameda County. The mask should cover your nose and mouth and be worn any time you are within six feet of someone else. Wearing a mask minimizes the chance of you and others spreading COVID-19.

Social distancing
Keep your distance.

Keep a minimum of six feet (about two arms' length) between yourself and others following social distancing guidelines. This physical distance helps stop the spread of the virus and minimizes the risk to everyone at Mills.

Hand washing for 20 seconds
Wash your hands.

Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use hand sanitizer made with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not immediately available.

Cleaning bottle
Clean your space.

Mills has instituted stringent cleaning procedures and protocols across campus to protect all members of the community and official visitors. Please protect your environment and your health by following all cleaning requirements.

Wellness checklist
Do a daily health check.

Every member of the Mills community and official visitors are asked to perform a daily health check to determine if they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms before coming on to campus/leaving a residence hall.

Staying at home
Stay home if you feel sick.

If you are sick or have any symptoms of COVID-19, please stay home or in your residence hall and seek medical assistance/diagnosis. You may need to quarantine for up to 14 days to ensure that you do not infect others.

Getting a test
Get tested.

We encourage you to get tested if you are showing symptoms of COVID-19 or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive. Students may contact the Vera Whole Health Center to be tested. Others may access any convenient testing location that offers free COVID-19 tests.

Testing positive
Quarantine if positive.

If you test positive for COVID-19, please contact if you are a student and immediately quarantine for a minimum of 14 days, following all Mills health and safety guidelines. Employees should contact and quarantine at home.

Mills COVID-19 Dashboard

To keep the Mills community informed, we have created a dashboard that will be updated every Monday with the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases on campus, classified by students, faculty, and staff. We encourage any student, faculty, or staff member who is exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 or who has been in contact with someone who has tested positive to get tested.

COVID-19 Dashboard

COVID-19 News Updates

Update 11.22.20:

This week, the steep increase in COVID-19 cases across California brought Alameda County back into the purple tier, the most restrictive tier in California's Blueprint for a Safer Economy. The Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) issued a press release (PDF) explaining the change, and then another release detailing the curfew (PDF) that Governor Newsom issued yesterday. The governor's "limited stay-at-home order" is in effect from Saturday, November 21, through at least December 21. It's intended to limit interactions with non-household members and restrict movement between 10:00 pm and 5:00 am. Because Mills has been cautious in opening the campus to non-essential activities, campus restrictions during this new phase of California's COVID-19 response will be largely consistent with what we've already been doing this fall semester.

While the county remains in the purple tier, we ask that only essential staff come to campus. Supervisors will continue to support remote working when possible and are available to discuss work plans for the spring semester with their departments and divisions. It seems likely that elevated coronavirus risk will continue well into the new year.

See All Updates


The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES Act) established a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) to assist higher education institutions and enrolled students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Current Mills students are eligible to apply for these emergency grants at the beginning of the fall semester. As a participant in this program, Mills reports how funds have been distributed every 45 days at: CARES Act reporting.


If you have additional specific COVID-19 questions that are not addressed on these web pages, contact us at

Public Health Resources