Vice Provost G.L. Black and Associate Vice Chancellor Pam Jones share health and safety update with students

Dear Students,

As we embark on a new academic year, the health and safety of the Vanderbilt community remains paramount. It is critical we continue to be attentive and pragmatic in our health and safety approach, focusing on shared responsibility, respect, and support for fellow community members. The university will continue to maintain an adaptable public health coordination function for current and future health and wellness needs.  Please review the information below for important health and safety updates.


Our COVID-19 response continues to uphold the University’s mission and values while grounding our decisions in science, expert advice, and protecting our community members. The University is focused on transitioning to an environment in which we can all thrive despite COVID-19’s continuous presence in our daily lives. We will remain flexible and ready to adapt to any changing circumstances. The COVID-19 Health and Safety webpage includes a comprehensive overview of current protocols and will be updated with relevant guidance as protocols evolve. Please specifically note the following protocols applicable to students:

  • Symptomatic testing is available at the Student Health Center, Vanderbilt Walk-in Clinics, and Vanderbilt Health Clinics at Walgreens.  
  • Free rapid antigen at-home kits are available for the Vanderbilt community for pick-up in Sarratt 310 (8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays). Beginning August 23, the kits will be available for free in the Campus Dining Munchie Marts.
  • If a student develops symptoms and is awaiting a COVID-19 test result or receives a positive COVID-19 test result, the student stays home. Campus residents will generally isolate in their regular on-campus housing assignments.  Limited isolation space is available on campus and will be reserved for campus residents who test positive for COVID-19 and who share a bedroom space with a student with moderate or severe immunosuppression. Students with moderate or severe immunosuppression who will be sharing a bedroom space should register with Student Access and submit a request for the isolation housing accommodation as soon as possible.  
  • If a student receives a positive COVID-19 test result outside of the Student Health Center, the student should report the result to the Command Center using the online webform so they can receive proper isolation instructions.


The World Health Organization declared monkeypox a public health emergency of international concern, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services declared the ongoing spread of the virus in the United States a public health emergency. Monkeypox has arrived in Tennessee and in Davidson County, and the University has been preparing and planning for managing any impacts on our campus community.

Any student who is feeling ill or having monkeypox symptoms should contact the Student Health Center. Students who are tested for monkeypox will need to isolate from others until they receive their results. Students who live off campus should isolate in their residences and campus residents should contact for more information about isolation housing if they have symptoms and are awaiting test results or have tested positive for monkeypox. More information about monkeypox protocols can be found on the monkeypox health and safety webpage.

Reproductive Health

As previously announced, Provost Raver convened a reproductive health task force to identify and implement concrete ways the University can support the Vanderbilt community’s health, safety, and well-being within the context of federal and Tennessee laws. A list of new and existing resources is available for Vanderbilt community members as they navigate decisions about their health care and their professional and personal lives. This list includes information about financial assistance through the Student Critical Support Fund, free emergency oral contraception at the Student Health Center, and the newly created Women’s Health and Parenting Resource Coordinator.


We understand navigating ongoing global health emergencies while starting a new academic year may result in feelings of anxiety and uncertainty. Below are resources that are available to support you.

We hope you have a safe start to the academic year, and take time to prioritize your wellbeing.

G.L. Black
Vice Provost for Student Affairs and Dean of Students

Pam Jones
Associate Vice Chancellor for Health and Wellness