SAIT mandates rapid tests for students moving to campus residences

CALGARY — Thousands of families are packing up boxes and vehicles this weekend as they prepare to move post-secondary students into their new Calgary digs.

But at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT), there’s an extra step that must be completed before any boxes can be unpacked.

Everyone who enters on-campus residences throughout the weekend will be subject to a rapid COVID-19 test.

Those who test negative will be allowed on site to move in.

“We’ve got scheduled windows throughout the next two days, and we’ve got a certain number of students per hour block,” SAIT director of safety and community services David Zajdlik said. “And we can accommodate anyone who tests positive within an isolation suite and will provide them support.”

New international student Joy Khoury told CTV News the process was seamless.

“Everything is organized and so I don’t think I have to worry about it,” Khoury said. “It’s been great.”

Inside most of Calgary’s post-secondary schools, mandatory vaccination rules are being skipped in favour of masks in indoor spaces.

SAIT says it’s considering adding in some extra protection.

“We’re looking at options for doing periodic rapid testing for employees and students on campus,” Zajdlik said.

Across town, the University of Calgary will also be welcoming in new residents this weekend. Roughly 1,400 will move in to a new home there over the next two days.

U of C students won’t need to take the same rapid tests.

Mount Royal University’s move-in dates are scheduled for Sept. 4 and 5.

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