Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

Image - CDC CoronaVirus
Photo credit: Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAM

Check here for official messages and status updates from Southwestern Law School. 

The most recent updates and information will appear just below.  Prior communications are archived under "Community Announcements" in the sidebar.

UPDATE: March 12, 2021 - 3:00 p.m.

Dean's Message re: Summer Session 2021

Dear Southwestern Students,

I hope our traditional students are enjoying Spring Break – getting more rest and sleep than usual, having some fun, and using the week for course review and catchup.  And I hope our SCALE I students are nicely getting settled into Period 4.  It’s also that time of the year that you are probably thinking ahead to coursework over the Summer Session and even next fall and wondering whether we’ll be back on campus now that the Library is open on a limited basis. 

I am thrilled that we’ve received the governmental green light to open our Library to provide study spaces for you.  Los Angeles County deems the library reopenings an initial step to reopening colleges and universities.  With the roll-out of vaccinations, we hope that governmental authorities will allow colleges and universities to open up more campus facilities by fall. 

Though the Library is now open and we anticipate will stay open moving forward, the current governmental orders and anticipated timeline of vaccinations do not provide the certainty we need to hold summer classes on campus.  For this reason, all classes in our Summer Session, which starts on June 1st and runs through July 28, will be held online.  We’ll have our typical extensive range of courses this summer, with the registration period scheduled from April 21 to 23.  On April 14, we’ll host the 2021-22 Schedule Overview, and on April 21, prior to the start of the summer registration period, the Dean of Students Office will host our annual Table Day event (familiarizing you with our course offerings and Concentrations). 

Next, thinking about the fall semester and Period 5, there’s nothing I’d like more than for all of us to be back on campus.  But I know we need to be patient and see how the vaccination roll-out proceeds and what governmental orders may be in place.  But in order to give you plenty of notice to make arrangements for your living situation and otherwise, we plan to let you know by early June whether the fall semester and Period 5 classes will be on campus, remote, or a combination.

In closing, I’d like to say how proud I am of each and every Southwestern student’s resilience and resolve to forge ahead with your studies, a myriad of law school and professional activities, and support for one another in this highly unusual and challenging year.  I am proud to be your Dean.  And, as always, I encourage you to reach out with any thoughts or questions you may have.


Dean Susan


UPDATE - February 23, 2021

Vaccinations to Begin on March 1 for the Education Sector

Dear Faculty and Staff,

The L.A. County Department of Public Health recently announced that all faculty and staff in the education sector (including colleges and universities) are eligible to be vaccinated for COVID-19 beginning on Monday, March 1. 

Starting on March 1, you will be able to schedule an appointment by visiting the Department's COVID-19 vaccine page. The Department of Health is also assisting residents with disabilities or without computer access by scheduling appointments over the phone at 833-540-0473. Representatives are available to provide this assistance between 8:00 am - 8:30 pm, seven days a week.

The Department has not yet released the type of documentation you will need to bring to your appointment to prove that you work for a school. We will let you know as soon as we learn more about this. You will likely need to bring your Southwestern ID or a paycheck stub with a photo ID. Our next payday is March 1, so you will soon receive a pay stub at home. Make sure you save this paystub. If you need a copy of your paystub, please email to request one. The turnaround time for this request is 24 hours.

Read the full update here.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health:

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) has confirmed 14,564 new cases reported and 958,497total cases of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Los Angeles County, including cases reported by Long Beach and Pasadena Health Departments.

*Cases through 1/13/2020

  1. Safer at Home

Stay Informed

Information presented by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 


  1. What is a coronavirus?

    Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Many of them infect animals, but some coronaviruses from animals can evolve (change) into a new human coronavirus that can spread from person-to-person. This is what happened with the current novel coronavirus known as 2019-nCoV. Diseases from coronaviruses in people typically cause mild to moderate illness, like the common cold. Some, like the SARS or MERS viruses, cause serious infections like pneumonia.


  2. How are coronaviruses spread?

    Like other respiratory illnesses, such as influenza, human coronaviruses most commonly spread to others from an infected person who has symptoms through:

    • Droplets produced through coughing and sneezing
    • Close personal contact, such as caring for an infected person
    • Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes before washing your hands

    Novel Coronavirus is new, and we are learning more each day about how easily it spreads and how long it takes for people to become sick. As information becomes available, we will keep you informed.

    Do not assume that someone of Asian descent is likely to have novel coronavirus.


  3. What are the symptoms of Novel Coronavirus?

    Reported illnesses have ranged from people with mild symptoms to people becoming severely ill, requiring admission to the hospital, and dying. Symptoms include:

    • Fever
    • Cough
    • Difficulty breathing
    • Severe illness

    If you have traveled from mainland China and develop any of these symptoms within 14 days of your return, you should seek medical care right away. Before you go to a doctor’s office or emergency room, call ahead and tell them about your symptoms and your recent travel.

    Click image to enlarge


  4. How is novel coronavirus treated?

    There is no specific treatment for illness caused by the novel coronavirus. However, many of the symptoms can be treated. Treatment is based on the patient’s condition.

    There is currently no vaccine to prevent novel coronavirus. Be aware of scam products for sale that make false claims to prevent or treat this new infection.


  5. What can I do to protect myself and others from respiratory infections like 2019-nCoV?

    As with other respiratory illnesses, there are steps that everyone can take daily to reduce the risk of getting sick or infecting others with circulating viruses. You should:

    • Stay home when you're sick or have flu-like symptoms. If you have symptoms of acute respiratory illness, please stay home and do not come to work or class until you are free of fever (100.4° F or greater using an oral thermometer), and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g., cough suppressants). 
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
    • It's sensible to avoid shaking hands right now to reduce the risk of spreading infection. Though that might be awkward at times, it's an increasingly common practice in hospitals and clinics.
    • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, and then dispose of the tissue and clean your hands immediately. If you do not have a tissue, use your sleeve (not your hands).
    • Limit close contact with people who are sick.
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipes. Southwestern has changed our cleaning of surfaces and access points, etc.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
    • Practice healthy habits (get enough sleep, exercise, liquids, etc.)
    Click image to enlarge


  6. What if I want to be tested?

    If you are experiencing severe symptoms such as severe shortness of breath, contact your physician. If it is an emergency, dial 911.


    Information about COVID-19 Testing from the City of Los Angeles

    Testing is currently available to all residents of L.A. County whether or not you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. 

    Testing is by appointment only and is subject to availability. People with symptoms and front line workers are prioritized to receive same-day or next-day appointments.

    To confirm eligibility and search testing appointment availability, go to

    For more questions about testing, please visit our FAQ for answers to frequently asked questions.