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What Pittsburgh students need to know before Thanksgiving break

  • Health and Wellness
  • University News
  • Our City/Our Campus

Whether you’re reuniting with family and friends back home or staying on campus this Thanksgiving, here’s what you need to know.

And in case you needed a reminder, students’ recess is Sunday, Nov. 21, through Sunday, Nov. 28. Faculty and staff begin their time off on Thursday, Nov. 25.

Start the feast early

On Thursday, Nov. 18, Pitt Eats will be hosting “Thank-Ful,” a campus-wide Friendsgiving event focused on celebrating togetherness, expressing gratitude and giving back to the University of Pittsburgh community.

In partnership with Chartwells Higher Education, Pitt will simultaneously join 300 other schools in enjoying great food and participating in initiatives geared toward fighting food insecurity. The event will feature a Friendsgiving table of classic Thanksgiving meal items, engaging activities and a Thank-Ful wall for people to share their gratitude for others.

The Thanksgiving meal is open to students, faculty and staff. It will be served at both The Eatery and The Perch from 11 a.m, to 3 p.m. and the door price is $9.55 for all you care to eat. 

Remember to mask up whenever you’re not eating or drinking to minimize risk of spreading COVID-19.

Get your books before the break

The Hillman Library will be closed on Thursday, Nov. 25, through Saturday, Nov. 27. The library reopens Sunday, Nov. 28.

Leaving town?

Pitt’s Buses Home for the Holidays program is back! Save on gas money and catch a ride out of Oakland on a deluxe motorcoach. Tickets for Thanksgiving Recess bus rides are on sale now. Buses will depart campus from University Place (near Nordenberg Hall) on Friday, Nov. 19, at 2:00 p.m., 4:15 p.m. and 6 p.m., and buses will return to campus on Sunday, Nov. 28.

Sticking around?

Residence halls on the Pittsburgh campus will remain open for the duration of the break with staff on call, but starting Saturday, Nov. 20, most of Pitt’s on-campus dining options will be closed. Check out a schedule of Thanksgiving week dining hours.

If you need to reach a staff member, call Panther Central at 412-648-1100.

And, if you need to stock up on groceries, Forbes Street Market will be open throughout break, except for Thanksgiving Day.

Mental health support no matter where you are

Even during breaks, holidays and weekends, students can access support 24/7 by contacting the University Counseling Center at 412-648-7930. Students can also access drop-in support Monday, Nov. 22, through Wednesday, Nov. 24, by calling the center.

Time off from school doesn’t mean time off from COVID-19 safety measures

Pitt’s COVID-19 Medical Response Office encourages everyone to avoid high-risk activities as much as possible, such as spending time indoors unmasked with anyone symptomatic or unvaccinated or gathering in large, unmasked groups.

If you are fully vaccinated and asymptomatic, there is no need to test before and after traveling, but please remember to comply with all other mitigation measures, including masking at all times in transit and maintaining good hand hygiene.

Unvaccinated individuals will still have to provide a negative test result during Thanksgiving week as part of the University’s mandatory testing program.

The onsite COVID-19 testing center will be open in the O’Hara Student Center on Monday, Nov. 22, and Tuesday, Nov. 23, and the Pitt CoVax Vaccination Center will be open Monday, Nov. 22, Tuesday, Nov. 23, and Wednesday, Nov. 24. People can mail in their at-home kit or visit the onsite testing center at O’Hara on Monday or Tuesday of Thanksgiving week to remain in compliance.


— Nichole Faina, Justin P. Jones and Kendal Johnson