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Tips for the start of the semester

Spring 2023 Tips

Face Coverings (Masks)
The District’s face masking requirement utilizes the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID Community Level coding system. As the San Mateo County Community Level changes, students, employees, and visitors will be provided information via email, digital signage, and signage posted on building entrances. SMCCCD continues to make face coverings (masks) available to all students and employees. Masks are located at various locations throughout all campus buildings. You can view this COVID-19 Masking document to learn more about different effective masks. The updated masking requirements, as outlined below, are effective until further notice and apply to all students, employees, and visitors, regardless of vaccination status:

  • CDC COVID Community Level is LOW - A face mask is recommended, but not required.
  • CDC COVID Community Level is MEDIUM - A face mask is required while indoors in any District facility.
  • CDC COVID Community Level is HIGH - A face mask is required while indoors in any District facility.

To track the San Mateo County’s COVID Community Level, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

Get Tested Before You Return to Campus & Free COVID-19 Testing Resources at CSM
Before the semester starts, it’s encouraged that you take the opportunity to test before being on campus. Through its partnership with San Mateo County Health (SMCH), SMCCCD continues to operate its COVID-19 testing site at College of San Mateo, available to students, employees, and the public. Free at-home antigen testing kits are available at college bookstores and public safety offices.

Federal Program Resumes: Get Free At-Home COVID-19 Test Kits
The Federal Government announced that every home in the United States could receive four free at-home COVID-19 tests. To order your free COVID-19 tests, fill out the Free At-Home COVID-19 Tests order form.

Daily Health Self-Screening Required - Stay Home If You are Symptomatic or Test Positive for COVID-19
Students must self-screen daily regardless of vaccination status. Do NOT enter campus grounds if experiencing any of the following COVID-related symptoms:

  • Fever or feeling feverish (chills, sweating) 
  • Cough that’s new or worsening (continuous, more than usual) 
  • Shortness of breath (out of breath or unable to breathe deeply) 
  • Congestion or runny nose (not related to seasonal allergies or other known causes/conditions) 
  • Sore throat (not related to seasonal allergies or other known causes/conditions) 
  • New headache that is unusual or long-lasting (not related to migraines or recurring headaches) 
  • Unusual fatigue 
  • Unexplained muscle or body aches 
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea 
  • New loss of taste or smell

Students should report to their instructor or appropriate college staff if they are experiencing any of the symptoms listed. If you test positive for COVID-19, report your results. You will receive a return email with instructions for isolation and when you are cleared to return to campus.

Get the New Bivalent Booster
You can get a free COVID-19 Bivalent Booster at many locations in San Mateo County. Employees, students, and the broader community can sign up for free at MyTurn.

Virtual Front Desk
Do you need general assistance? Need help adding or dropping classes, or would you like to speak with a student ambassador and get advice? Ask your questions during our Virtual Drop-In Hours. No appointment is necessary; please visit the Virtual Front Desk to speak with someone.

In-Person Help
The Front Desk of the college will have staff and student ambassadors available during the first week of the semester. The Front Desk is located on the second floor of Building 10, next to the college bookstore entrance. Additionally, there will be outside tables in prominent campus areas with staff and student ambassadors available to answer any questions.

Campus Hours
Please refer to the Campus Hours page, which provides an updated listing of campus-wide hours for all departments and programs on campus.

Virtual Tour & Campus Map

We have a Virtual Tour site where you can explore the college's buildings and familiarize yourself with where your classes and CSM's student support programs are located. You can also refer to the campus map.

Free Student Parking for Spring 2023
Students can park in any designated student parking lot for free and without a permit. Students will be ticketed for parking in staff parking lots, designated handicap parking spaces without a tag, and designated red zones. Please view the campus map to see where the student parking lots are located.

View Open Classes
There is still time to add a class to your spring schedule! To view available classes, check out WebSchedule.

Use Your College Email
All college electronic communications will come to your email address. Log into your WebSMART student account to find your email address and password. You may forward your emails to a personal email account if you wish. For more information about email forwarding, see the Email Forwarding tutorial.

If You Miss the First Class, Contact Your Instructor Immediately 
If you could not get to your first class meeting, please contact your instructor immediately to avoid being dropped for non-attendance.

Closed Classes
You should contact the instructor if a class you want is filled. If the instructor has space in the class, they may provide you with an authorization code to add the class.

Submit Authorization Codes Immediately
If you receive an authorization code from an instructor to add a class, be sure to register immediately via WebSMART. You will need both the authorization code and the CRN# for the class to enroll. Some instructors may honor your authorization code for only a short period of time. You may be denied entry if you have not officially registered for the class.

Use Waitlists
You only have 24 hours from when you have been notified via email (your account) to register for a call you were on the waitlist for. Please review your email daily if you are on a waitlist. If you do not register for the class within 24 hours, you will be dropped off the waitlist.

Borrow Technology
Current students who need access to the internet and technology equipment or software required to complete coursework can borrow available equipment such as Chromebooks, hotspots, and graphing calculators. Please visit the CSM Library's Technology Equipment and Services webpage for more information.

Order Textbooks Online
Search for and purchase textbooks by Course Reference Number (CRN) to get them shipped from the Bulldog Bookstore. Here’s a step-by-step video on how to order your books. For questions about Inclusive Access, including support and the opt-out form, visit the Inclusive Access page.

Important Academic Dates
To view important academic dates for this semester (campus closures, deadlines, etc.), please refer to the SMCCCD Academic Calendar.

List of Student Services
We’re here to help and support you. Check out this list of student service resources available both online and in person at College of San Mateo.

Wellness Center
Students can schedule free health and personal counseling appointments on the Wellness Center site. If you are dealing with anxiety, depression, addiction, or bullying, you can access free on-demand mental health professionals 24/7 through our partnership with TimelyCare.

Free Groceries & Housing Resources for Students
For information about how to pick up free groceries on campus or access housing support, visit the SparkPoint site.

Change of Personal Information Form
If you would like to change your first name or personal pronouns on class rosters, waitlists, or in Canvas, please use the Change of Personal Information Form. If you have any questions or need assistance, please email the Multicultural & Dream Center at or call (650) 574-6120.

Student Communications
Students will receive Weekly Update emails and Bulldog Bulletins, the monthly student e-newsletter, from We try to keep as much of our communication with students centralized to the Weekly Updates and Bulldog Bulletins, so please check those once you get them, as they will contain important information and updates. 

College Events
Check out CSM's Event Calendar to learn about special events, workshops, and other opportunities happening in person and virtually. 

College of San Mateo Athletic Center
To learn about student membership rates, please call the College of San Mateo Athletic Center and speak to a Membership Representative at (650) 378-7373, or stop by the Athletic Center for a tour.

Sign Up for Emergency Text Message Notifications
To receive emergency college communications via text message on your device, log in to WebSMART. In the tab labeled "Student Services," select "Emergency Text Message Contact Information," alternatively, you can go directly to ALERTME and register for emergency notifications there.