The following are required actions for hosting indoor events: 

Occupancy Limits and Physical Distancing

It is the responsibility of the event coordinator, department and division hosting the event to ensure that the space capacity for all non-class indoor activity, including co-curricular activities, is followed. Additionally, physical distancing significantly reduces the transmission of COVID-19. Because people can spread the virus before they know they are sick, individuals should maintain a distance of at least 6 feet (or two arms’ length) from others whenever possible. Physical distancing should be taken into consideration when planning room setup for all indoor events. 

Guests and Verifying College IDs

Non-College community members are allowed to attend official indoor events at the discretion of the Amherst departments or programs hosting them. The guidelines are:

    • All external guests (including students and employees at other Five College institutions) must show either of the following before they are allowed into official College-sponsored events:

      • documentation of full vaccination

      • documentation of a negative test result from a PCR test or an antigen test taken within 72 hours preceding the event
    • Organizers of gatherings are responsible for ensuring compliance using a simple guide for verifying vaccination status and recent test results. 

    • Event organizations will also need to coordinate with the Amherst College Police Department to manage building access. 

    • Student organizations are not eligible to invite the general public to their events. They may only invite Five College students participating in a mandatory weekly COVID testing program.

Regular attendance at classes is still limited to Five College students from Hampshire, Mount Holyoke and Smith Colleges who are regularly PCR-tested at their home campus. Aditionally, a very limited number of UMass Amherst students who have recieved advance permission to be in the Amherst College testing protocol as part of their course exchange are permitted. Please be aware that changes in testing protocols on those campuses may affect this policy.

Protocols for Speakers, Contractors and Vendors

(Updated March 23, 2022) Contractors, vendors, speakers and visitors to classrooms who enter campus buildings for occasional, one-day visits on official College business will now follow the same protocols as guests attending official events indoors: they will no longer need to participate in the College testing program, but must show documentation of up-to-date vaccination and booster, or a negative test result from a PCR test or antigen test taken within 72 hours preceding their visit. The host department is responsible for verifying the vaccination status or test result.

Guidelines for Unmasked Performers, Speakers, Student-Athletes

Speakers, performers and students-athletes actively engaged in those pursuits may be unmasked during an event only if these rules are followed:

    • Performers and audience members maintain 14’ of distance between the front edge of performance areas and the first row of seating.

    • The indoor gathering or athletic space must be at 50% capacity.

    • The organizing or hosting department confirms that all student performers and athletes are in compliance with the College's weekly testing protocol, and that visiting athletes and officials comply with the New England Small College Athletic Conference’s protocols.

    • Speakers/performers/student-athletes and officials only remove their masks while actively performing or playing.

    • Everyone else associated with the event (coaches, conductors, technicians, stage hands, audience members and spectators, among others) wear masks.

Protocols for Catering and Receptions

Catering is discouraged at indoor events at this time. If food is served, the Fall 2021 Health and Safety Protocols must be followed.  Additionally, the College’s Catering, Take-Out and Personally Prepared Foods Policy must be followed for all events where food is served. 

The following is suggested for hosting indoor events: 


In order to ensure that the space capacity for all non-class indoor activity is followed (see above), it’s strongly recommended that all events have a registration requirement in order to accurately monitor and maintain a list of anticipated attendees. If you need assistance creating a Google Form to collect registration information, please create an AskIT Ticket by emailing AskIT@amherst.edu

The following are alternatives to hosting indoor events: 

Virtual Event Planning Guide

The Events Coordination Group (ECG) is pleased to share the Virtual Event Planning Guide. Read more to learn how to make your next virtual event a success. Additionally, the group maintains a long and ongoing list of events at the College and is an ideal resource to let you know if any events are already scheduled for your choice of dates. They welcome information about any confirmed events you are aware of. Please contact your division representative in the early stages of your event planning.

Reserving Tents Outdoors

Instead of hosting your event indoors, consider hosting it in one of the College’s outdoor tents. A limited number of tents are available for Fall 2021. To view details for available tents, use the “Browse for Space” feature and filter by the room type “Tent.”

Requests for tents can be submitted in Virtual EMS and are processed by Conferences & Special Events, the Registrar’s Office or the Office of Student Activities, depending on which tent is requested and when the tent will be used.

Requests for quadrangles can be emailed to Heidi Kellogg, supervisor of event support services. Requests for the Keefe Campus Center Fire Pit can be submitted in Virtual EMS and are processed by the Office of Student Activities. Requests for the outdoor grills near Wieland Hall can be emailed to studentactivities@amherst.edu.