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COVID-19 vaccination requirement: University issues additional guidance

Jun. 9, 2021, 12:00 PM

As announced last month, COVID-19 vaccinations will be required for all members of the Vanderbilt University community for the 2021–22 academic school year. Faculty, staff and postdocs who have not yet received their vaccination may visit the free walk-up vaccination clinics taking place on campus in June and July or may find a vaccination site elsewhere in the community.  

The on-campus clinics are scheduled for June 9 and 16, 2–4 p.m. at the School of Nursing and June 10 and 17, 7–9 a.m. at the David Williams II Recreation and Wellness Center for first dose. Second doses are scheduled for July 7 and 14, 2–4 p.m. at the School of Nursing and July 8 and 15, 7–9 a.m. at the David Williams II Recreation and Wellness Center. 

University leaders are finalizing fall semester protocols concerning student housing, staff workplace guidance and assistance for international students and faculty returning in the fall. More details will be shared with the campus community as decisions are made.  

Today the university is sharing additional guidance on the our COVID-19 vaccination requirement.  

Student vaccination requirement

New and returning students are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 for the 2021–22 academic school year. The requirement applies to all undergraduate, graduate and professional students this fall, and it will be handled in a manner consistent with other university policies governing student vaccine requirements.  

Students can request accommodations for medical exemptions through the Student Access office and religious exemptions through the Equal Opportunity and Access office. To support timely processing in advance of the start of the academic year, accommodation requests should be submitted by June 15. 

Students must submit their vaccination record through the university’s vaccine tracker submission form, including those who received their vaccine from Student Health, VUMC or a VUMC clinic, no later than one week before the first day of class of their fall academic program. A hold will be placed on a student’s course registration until the vaccination record has been verified unless they have an approved (or in-process request for) accommodation or they are an international student who will be vaccinated upon arrival in Nashville. A student’s enrollment at the university will be cancelled for the semester if the student is noncompliant.  

International students 

If a World Health Organization approved COVID-19 vaccination is not available in a student’s home country before returning to campus, the student will be able to receive a vaccination and a COVID-19 test once they arrive on campus. Consistent with CDC guidance, they should only perform essential activities, mask and physical distance for seven days after travel.  

International students can request accommodations for medical exemptions through the Student Access office and religious exemptions through the Equal Opportunity and Access office. To support timely processing in advance of the start of the academic year, accommodation requests should be submitted by June 15. 

More information about receiving a COVID-19 vaccination and other requirements upon arriving to campus will be shared directly with international students this summer. 

Faculty vaccination requirement

All full-time and part-time Vanderbilt University-employed faculty are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 for the 2021–22 academic school year. All faculty, including those who received their vaccine from Occupational Health, VUMC or a VUMC clinic, must submit their vaccination record using the vaccine tracker submission form by July 31.  

Faculty who seek an exemption from the vaccination requirement as a medical or religious accommodation must submit a request for accommodation to the Equal Opportunity and Access office as soon as possible. To support timely processing, accommodation requests should be submitted by June 15. 

Faculty who have not submitted confirmation of vaccination and who do not have an approved or in-process request for exemption/accommodation by July 31 will be subject to appropriate Faculty Manual processes, including disciplinary actions. 

Staff and postdoctoral fellow vaccination requirement

All Vanderbilt University-employed staff—which includes full time, part time, flex and temporary—and all VU-employed postdocs are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 for the 2021–22 academic school year. Staff and postdocs, including those who received their vaccine from Occupational Health, VUMC or a VUMC clinic, must submit their vaccination record using the vaccine tracker submission form by July 31. This requirement applies regardless of whether staff are working on campus or remotely, now or in the future. 

Staff and postdocs who decide to seek an exemption from the vaccination requirement as a medical or religious accommodation must submit a request for accommodation to the Equal Opportunity and Access office as soon as possible. To support timely processing, accommodation requests should be submitted by June 15. 

Vaccination and submission of vaccination records (or an approved or in-process request for accommodation) by July 31 for staff and postdocs is a condition of employment. Supervisors will be notified of those not in compliance, and the university will take appropriate disciplinary action, which will include termination of employment. 

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