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How To Get Tested For COVID-19 This Spring

With the semester now in full swing, it’s important to keep yourself and the people around you safe. The light at the end of the pandemic tunnel is getting brighter every day, but until we’re in the clear, masking up and staying apart will (obviously) still be very important.

A huge part of keeping yourself and the State College community safe is regularly getting tested for COVID-19 when necessary. Luckily, Penn State has multiple locations for free and easy testing this spring, on top of its random surveillance testing.

Hintz Family Alumni Center & Pegula Ice Arena

Walk-up tests at Hintz Family Alumni Center and Pegula Ice Arena are available for all students. Whether you believe you may be at risk or just simply want to get tested, both of these venues have you covered.

The hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The walk-up test will have you in and out in 15 minutes. Plus, no appointments are needed.

If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, it is not recommended that you use this option to get tested. The university asks that you get a test with the University Health Services.

University Health Services/Campus Health Center

This is the option the university asks you to use if you have been in direct contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19 or are experiencing symptoms yourself.

This test is not free. You can either pay out of pocket for the test or have it billed to your insurance. An appointment also has to be made for a test with UHS. You can make your appointment here.

Vault Testing Kits

If your busy schedule doesn’t have time for the walk-up option, you can take a test from the comfort of your dorm, house, or apartment. Penn State students are likely familiar with the Vault Testing kits. The saliva tests must be done while on a Zoom call with a Vault Health employee. They are free for all Penn State students.

CVS/MedExpress

Select CVS Pharmacy and MedExpress locations offer COVID-19 tests for customers. While this may not be ideal, it is still an option.


As the pandemic continues, staying aware of your health is as important as ever. Keep getting tested, keep wearing your mask, and get vaccinated when you can!

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About the Author

Charles Reinert

Charles Reinert is a senior majoring in broadcast journalism. He hails from Norristown, Pennsylvania and is an avid Philadelphia sports fan. He loves playing his guitar, the color blue, and Tetris. If you feel the need to give him any positive or negative feedback, you can follow him on Twitter @charles_rein10 or email him at [email protected]

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