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Jun 07, 2021 EXPLO Today COVID-19 Planning

EXPLO to Use POM Contact Tracing to Support COVID-19 Safety Efforts

EXPLO will use POM Contact Tracing to maximize student health and safety without compromising student experience and authentic interactions

Communications Staff

As we continue to plan for a safe and healthy residential experience this summer, EXPLO has acquired a new contact tracing system for students that will allow us to respond quickly and efficiently in the event that a member of our community tests positive for COVID-19. 

The POM Tracer is a small and lightweight Bluetooth device approximately the size of a large coin that students will wear to track whom they have come into contact with throughout the session. 

pom tracer


All EXPLO students will be required to wear a POM Tracer for the entirety of their session(s). The POM Tracers will be distributed when students check in on Arrival Day. (Students who are attending consecutive sessions will keep their POM Tracer for each of the sessions.) The devices clip easily to our EXPLO lanyards, but they can also be worn in an armband or wristband during activities that require students to remove their lanyards for safety purposes.

The POM Tracer is programmed to recognize when students are within a predetermined physical range and report sensor-to-sensor information when devices come into contact, but the POM does not track an individual’s location. EXPLO will follow CDC guidelines to determine and program safe distancing. The devices will function anywhere, as they are neither GPS nor WiFi dependent. 

How will EXPLO use POM contact tracing at the programs?

After evaluating different contact tracing options, we selected the POM Tracer because it helps us deliver on the least disruptive experience this summer by providing the following benefits:

    • Quick response time: 
      In the event that a student tests positive for COVID-19, individuals who have had close contact with the individual for 15 minutes or more will be identified within minutes. This quick response time allows EXPLO to activate proper notification and quarantine protocols among affected individuals almost immediately, helping to prevent the spread of the virus. 

    • Non-disruptive interactions: 
      While POM Tracers include functionality to alert students when they are not within a safe distance from one another, we will not use this feature at EXPLO. Instead, we will be able to gather the data we need in a non-disruptive manner in order to maintain natural interactions among students while reinforcing appropriate physical distancing measures.

    • Proactive monitoring: 
      Though the POM Tracers do not record an individual’s location, they do automatically record multiple contacts and the distance among devices. This allows proactive monitoring so that we can ensure that the EXPLO community on campus is maintaining a safe distance at any given time — even without a positive case identified.

    • The POM Tracer will always work: 
      The Bluetooth devices have six-month battery life and are not dependent on WiFi or GPS. They are extremely durable and waterproof. 

Please note: There is no additional fee for the POM Tracer. Students are required to return the device at the end of the session. If the student loses the device, a replacement fee will be deducted from their Miscellaneous Account. 


Our Admission Team is happy to assist you with any questions you may have. Please email summer@explo.org, call 781.762.7400, or schedule a call for a time that is convenient for you.

Communications Staff

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