Updated July 2022

Dear Prospective and Returning UCI Students,

We are happy to tell you that beginning Monday, July 18, 2022, UC Irvine will change its COVID-19 rules as follows:

  • When you are indoors, face masks will be required, whether you are vaccinated or not, except when alone in an enclosed place. Face coverings are optional outdoors.
  • UCI will stop doing COVID-19 testing for randomly selected people who are up to date with their COVID-19 vaccinations and who do not have COVID symptoms.
  • We will still have the daily symptom checker, but you only have to respond if your answer is “yes” to one of the questions.

Students, instructors, and staff who have exemptions, deferrals or who aren’t in compliance with the COVID-19 policy must continue to do weekly COVID-19 tests. Drop-in testing will still be available six days a week. Spring quarter PCR testing will be at two locations: Student Center and Plaza Verde. Please visit https://uci.edu/coronavirus/testing-response/testing.php for more information about these testing locations.

UC Irvine recommends that students who leave campus for spring break take an antigen or PCR test 48 hours before returning to campus.

  • Students who are not up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines are required to take two PCR tests through campus testing sites. The test must be five days apart and the first test must be taken within 48 hours after returning to campus.
  • Students who are up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines are recommended to test at least once by home antigen or PCR test within 48 hours after returning to campus.

COVID-19 antigen test kits are widely available at pharmacies and online sellers, as well as for free if ordered from the federal government. UCI also plans to make kits available directly to students and employees at no cost before spring break. We will share this information as soon as it becomes available.

Of course, we will continue to be very careful in watching the data and changing our plans if it’s needed. For the latest COVID-19 information, please continue to visit the UCI Forward website.

This is good news for all of us – students, instructors, and staff alike – as we look forward to a more normal teaching, learning, and working experience. We wish you a successful close of the winter quarter and an even brighter spring!


Ian Gibson

UC COVID-19 Vaccine Policy Information for Students

As part of your enrollment at UCI Division of Continuing Education, you are required to comply with the UC COVID-19 Program.

  • DCE students will be able to upload their vaccine records through the Student Health Center portal (instructions for this will be made available to students after their acceptance to their program) using their UCInetID
  • DCE students can request an exemption, exception or deferral of the vaccination through the same process as main campus UCI students
  • UCI can help students with finding vaccine appointments in California
  • View instructions on how to upload your vaccination record

The deadline to submit your proof of COVID-19 vaccination or your request for exception on medical, disability, or religious grounds, or a deferral based on pregnancy is before your program start date. Students who are not in compliance by this deadline will experience the following:

  • Have a hold placed on their records with the risk of being dropped from their classes
  • Lose access to UCI’s Wi-Fi system: UCI Mobile Access
  • Be referred to the DCE’s Student Affairs & Student Services Office for disciplinary action including, but not limited to, probation, suspension, or dismissal

COVID Boosters Are Required 
On December 21, 2021, UC President Drake announced that University of California policy requires students, faculty, and staff to keep their COVID-19 vaccination status up to date. This includes COVID-19 boosters for those who are eligible.  

To comply with this policy, UCI is requiring boosters for all eligible individuals – both students and employees. Those who are eligible and not boosted will be considered non-compliant with the university’s vaccination policy. More information can be found at https://uci.edu/coronavirus/messages/211222-COVID-boosters-required.php  

Please contact the DCE Student Affairs & Student Services office by phone at (949) 824-5414 or by email at dce-services@uci.edu for further assistance with the following: 

  • How to submit the required documentation of vaccination 
  • How to submit your exception or deferral request, if needed 
  • Locating a vaccine site near you 
  • Help with issues related to vaccine documentation received internationally 
  • Answer questions as to whether vaccines received internationally meet the UC COVID-19 Vaccine policy requirements 

To view the full memo on this policy from our Dean, please click here. 

COVID Testing
DCE students who are not able to schedule an appointment for COVID testing in the patient portal may walk-in to any test location during their hours of operation without a scheduled appointment. For a list of testing locations, please visit https://uci.edu/coronavirus/testing-response/testing.php

Winter Quarter


Winter 2022 will be my first quarter at UCI and I have an initial I-20.  Can I still attend?Expand

Yes. Instruction for the Winter quarter will be hybrid. This means a combination of in person and remote instruction. The first four weeks of the winter quarter will be taught remotely from January 3 to January 28. This decision made by our chancellor is based on the best scientific evidence, which indicates that UCI will be able to return to in-person instruction on January 31. If information over the next two weeks calls that into question we will adjust accordingly, as we have done since the beginning of the pandemic.

Students are expected to enter the U.S. by their program start date, which is listed on their I-20. Entering the U.S. after the program start date is not guaranteed and is at the discretion of the Port of Entry Officer at the airport. To avoid any issues at the Port of Entry, please arrive by your program start date.

Orientations will be held remotely via Zoom. The campus tour and “meet and greet” event will be rescheduled to a later date and time.

The campus will remain fully operational during the first four weeks of the quarter. Our advisors will be available to assist you by email, by phone, and video conferencing (i.e., Zoom).

Can I return home for winter quarter and still take classes?Expand

To maintain your F-1 status, you must attend in-person classes on campus once in-person instruction resumes this quarter.  Currently, only the first four weeks of instruction are scheduled to be held remotely. 

If you are a continuing student and wish to return home to study remotely, you must first speak with an academic advisor and an international student advisor.

How do I maintain my F-1 status during the winter quarter?Expand

It is important that you attend and participate in all remote meetings during the first four weeks of the quarter (January 3 to January 28) and all in-person meetings on campus when in-person instruction is scheduled to resume on January 31. 

While your classes are remote during the first four weeks of the quarter (January 3 to January 28), you must attend and participate in all remote class sessions.  Your classes will have the same schedule based on California time.  You must participate in your courses during these times.  Contact your instructor for more information. 

  • Your instructor may mark you absent if you are not logged in during class time.  Please check your syllabus and/or Statement of Understanding for the attendance policy for each of your courses. 
    • ACP students: Contact your instructor for more information. 
    • STAR and Academic Study Abroad Program (ASAP) Students: Contact STAR@ce.uci.edu in addition to the above for more information. 
  • Complete and submit your assignments, quizzes, tests on time (California time). Contact your instructor for more information. 
  • If you become sick during the quarter, you must tell your teacher, academic advisor (academicadvising@ce.uci.edu), and immigration advisor (immigrationofficials@ce.uci.edu).  You must give us a letter from your doctor so that we can help you maintain your F-1 status while you cannot attend classes.  Contact immigrationofficials@ce.uci.edufor more information. 
  • Tell us if you change your email address or your phone number so that we can update your student information at UCI DCE.

Can I enroll in a winter 2022 program and/or courses if I do not need an F-1 visa?Expand

Please contact our International Admissions Office at ip@ce.uci.edu or +1 (949) 824-5414 to inquire if the program you wish to attend is available for students who do not require an F-1 visa.

Can I postpone my application and payments to a future quarter?Expand

If you received an initial I-20 for winter 2022, you may postpone your application to a future quarter.  Please contact ip@ce.uci.edubefore the start date of your program to request to postpone your application.  Some programs, such as STAR, ASAP, CAP, and 3+2 may have special deadlines.  Please contact the STAR office at STAR@ce.uci.edu for more information.  

If you are a current student and would like to postpone your studies to a future quarter, such spring 2022, please contact ip@ce.uci.edu or +1 (949) 824-5414 for more information about next steps. You may be required to formally withdraw from your current program and/or submit a new application for the new program/quarter you wish to attend.

Are there any accommodations or changes to tuition payment dates/deadlines for the winter 2022 quarter?Expand

Payment deadlines for tuition remain the same and students will be notified by email with more information and instructions approximately four weeks before the program start date.

Can I get a refund if I don’t like the remote sessions?Expand

All requests for refunds are subject to review and are not guaranteed if you withdraw after the last refund date.


I am a continuing student, and my I-20 and F-1 status are active.  Can I study remotely from my home country during the first four weeks (January 3 to January 28) of the quarter while instruction is remote?Expand

Yes, if you are currently in valid F-1 status, your I-20 is active, and you continue full-time studies.  You must continue to follow the rules of your F-1 status including attending and participating in all remote and in-person class meetings. If your F-1 visa expires while you are outside of the United States, you must renew your F-1 visa before you can return to the U.S. Please contact the U.S. embassy in your home country to make an appointment to renew your visa. Please be sure to plan carefully since some offices may be closed or have very limited hours. 

If you are changing to a different program or transferring to DCE from another SEVP-approved school in the U.S. this winter quarter, you must be inside the United States before the current quarter program end date to maintain your F-1 status. If you have not re-entered the U.S. before the current quarter program end date, your I-20 will be completed, canceled, or terminated depending on your situation.  

When in-person instruction resumes (scheduled for January 31), you must attend all in-person classes on campus to maintain your F-1 status this winter quarter.  Please email immigrationofficials@ce.uci.edu with any questions regarding your I-20 and/or F-1 status.


I was going to travel internationally (outside the US); should I still go?Expand
If you do not have to leave the U.S., do not leave.  UCI DCE advises against all unnecessary travel. Even though you may be able to leave and re-enter the United States if you have not visited banned countries, the situation is unpredictable. This means things could change while you are traveling and you could have trouble getting back into the United States as well as to other countries.

If your F-1 visa is expired or will expire, you will need to apply for a new F-1 visa before you re-enter the U.S.  Please check for visa appointment availability at the U.S. Embassy in your home country before departing the U.S.  Some offices may be closed or have limited hours and may not be able to process your F-1 visa renewal in time to return to the U.S., so it is very important to plan ahead.

If you are changing to a different program or transferring to DCE from another SEVP-approved school in the U.S. for this summer quarter, you must be in the U.S. before the current quarter program end date in order to maintain your F-1 status. If you have not re-entered the U.S. before the current quarter program end date, you may only study remotely on a non F-1 status. Your I-20 will be completed, canceled or terminated depending on your situation. You may still enroll in summer courses remotely from your home country without an I-20.

I left the country and I do not have a valid travel signature; how do I obtain one?Expand
Please contact us at immigrationofficials@ce.uci.edu to request a travel signature on your I-20.  Your I-20 will be issued to you and sent to you electronically.

May I receive my I-20 with an electronic signature?Expand
Yes, we are currently issuing I-20s electronically signed to students.  If you wish to receive your I-20 by mail, you may contact us at ip@ce.uci.edu with your request and we will send you instructions to complete an eShipGlobal mailing order.

Must I take a COVID-19 test prior to traveling to the U.S.?Expand
Yes, as of December 6, all air passengers eligible for entry into the United States, regardless of vaccination status, must show a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than 1 day before travel to the United States with limited exceptions or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 90 days. More details on this requirement for all non-immigrant travelers is available here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/testing-international-air-travelers.html.

Which countries has the U.S. established restrictions on the entry of certain travelers into the U.S. as of November 2021?Expand

Effective November 29, 2021, a Presidential Proclamationsuspends the entry into the United States of noncitizens who were physical present within the following countries during the 14-day period preceding their entry into the U. S. The countries include, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe. 

Further information can be found on the CDCwebsite.

Health Insurance and Student Wellness

I am feeling anxious and nervous about COVID-19.  Can I speak with someone?Expand
Yes. Please contact Michael Sciarappa, your Student Wellness Advisor, at healthandwellness@ce.uci.edu or +1 (949) 824-6872 to make a remote appointment.

How can I get tested for COVID-19?Expand
Students who think they have been exposed to COVID-19 or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should call the Student Health Center and/or their doctor’s office for instructions. You can also contact Michael Sciarappa, your Student Wellness Advisor, for assistance at healthandwellness@ce.uci.edu or +1 (949) 824-6872.

Tests are available at multiple locations in Orange County, but only when recommended by a doctor.  If you think you have COVID-19 symptoms, contact your doctor.

Does the DCE Health Insurance cover the COVID-19?Expand
Yes. Anthem Blue Cross states that testing and treatment due to COVID-19 is covered under UCI DCE’s insurance plan.  This means that hospital stays, doctor visits, and medications are covered no matter what illness you have. In fact, Anthem also intends to waive out-of-pocket expenses for COVID-19 testing. Members can call the number on their ID card to confirm coverage. Please go to 4StudentHealth to see your plan summary, and to look up doctors and hospitals in your network. Additional information can be found on the Anthem blog. You can also contact Michael Sciarappa, your Student Wellness Advisor, for assistance at healthandwellness@ce.uci.edu or +1 (949) 824-6872.

Does the DCE Health Insurance cover me when I travel in the U.S?Expand
YesYour Anthem plan covers you anywhere in the U.S. You are covered wherever you travel in the U.S. Please use the "Find a Doctor" search feature if you need medical help while traveling. 

Note that outside of California, Anthem is called "Blue Cross".

Does the DCE Health Insurance cover me if I travel outside the U.S.?Expand
Yes, but only for emergencies. Travel insurance is included in your Anthem Plan, but coverage is limited to mostly emergencies.

I do not have the DCE Health Insurance. What is my coverage?Expand
Please review your own health insurance plan summary benefits and contact your insurance company if you have questions. If you need help understanding your plan, HealthandWellness@ce.uci.edu may be able to assist.

If you wish to enroll in UCI DCE’s health insurance plan, please contact us at healthandwellness@ce.uci.edu for more information.

Advising Services

I want to speak to a DCE advisor.Expand
We have phone and videoconference advising. Please email any of the advisory teams with your questions or to set up a remote meeting time. 





Student Life & Activities

Is Activities organizing in-person events?Expand
The Activities team creates a quarterly calendar full of various events, trips, sports, and activities both on and off campus for you to enjoy. At the moment, we are holding a majority of our extra programming through remote ways.


Do you have a laptop or computer I can use next week?Expand
No.  UCI DCE’s website and Canvas are both mobile compatible and can be used from your smart device as well as your laptop and home computer.

I’m having problems using Canvas. Who do I contact?Expand
Please contact online@uci.edu with any questions or problems. Also, below are helpful videos on how to use Canvas:

  1. https://vimeo.com/74677642
  2. https://app.vidgrid.com/view/ZWD53TpiRmnx/?sr=0fVdVJ


Will the student services fee be refunded to students who are not in the U.S.?Expand
No.  The quarterly student services fee covers all staff services for students whether classes are remote or in person.

Is a refund of any portion of tuition available to students who decide not to take any classes this summer? If it is, what is the deadline for applying for a refund?Expand
Refund requests beyond the last refund date must be reviewed.  You may email your request to ip@ce.uci.edu and your request will be reviewed by the program office. They will email you a decision about any request for a refund.


Where can I get more information?Expand