Posted May 27, 2021
Effective June 1, vaccinated faculty, staff, and students will no longer be required to wear masks in any campus building or on College grounds.
Lafayette is requiring students to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Aug. 1.
The strength of a residential college experience lies in our ability to learn, work, and live together as a close-knit community. After working together this spring, we know that the types of experiences you want most can only be provided if students are vaccinated.
To facilitate our return to a normal campus experience, effective Aug. 1, any student enrolled at Lafayette must show proof of vaccination. Students will be required to upload a completed copy of their vaccine card to their health portal in order to move into their residence hall assignments and attend classes. The only exceptions are students with a medical or religious exemption approved by the College.
Students represent a unique group by living in close quarters, spending significant time with each other. This is one reason vaccines previously required for students were not required for faculty and staff. Faculty and staff are not required to be vaccinated for COVID-19, but they are highly encouraged to do so. The College will continue to evaluate CDC and Pennsylvania Department of Health guidelines and will implement additional safety measures and policies concerning COVID-19 prevention should that be necessary.
Vaccination has been shown to significantly decrease the risk of COVID-19 and provides the ability to move beyond the pandemic. COVID-19 vaccination of students, faculty, and staff will contribute to community-wide immunity to this virus and help us ensure a full in-person living, learning, and working experience.
This enables the most full resumption of activities and for students to be able to interact in ways that provide the living and learning opportunities cherished by everyone in a close-knit academic community.
In order to come onto campus in the fall, students must be fully vaccinated or have an approved exemption on file with Bailey Health Center by Aug. 1. You’re encouraged to be vaccinated as soon as possible.
Scan or take a picture of the front of your completed COVID-19 vaccination record card. Be sure your name, date of birth, and completed vaccine record can be read. Upload your scanned card to the student health portal if you have not already done so.
Contact the medical office or pharmacy where you received your vaccination and request documentation of it. This must include manufacturer, lot number, date of administration, and location.
No, but students staying on campus this summer are encouraged to get vaccinated as soon as possible.
No, as they are eligible for at least one of the FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccines. They are not exempt from the vaccine requirement.
Your vaccine record will not be shared with anyone beyond Bailey Health Center. Confirmation of your compliance with the immunization requirement will be shared with the Dean of Students Office.
The best path to the activities cherished by members of a close-knit academic community relies on widespread vaccination for COVID-19. The College also is responsible for significant travel in and out of the Lehigh Valley, and if large numbers of students remain unvaccinated this could pose a health risk to our surrounding communities.
We do not know the trajectory of COVID-19 in the future and will revisit vaccine requirements as new information becomes available.
In order to afford students access to the valuable experiences unique to a residential college as well as the least restriction with travel and engaging in activities outside the campus, Lafayette requires all students to be fully vaccinated, with two limited exceptions:
To maximize protection of the health and safety of the campus community, Lafayette will only approve exemptions for a verified medical contraindication or a bona fide religious belief or practice that conflicts with the COVID-19 immunization requirement. General philosophical or moral objection to the COVID-19 vaccine will not suffice.
Yes, the requirement applies to all students learning on campus.
Students should be vaccinated as soon as possible in the interest of their own health. Those coming from abroad who did not have access to WHO-approved vaccines will be vaccinated after arrival on campus.
Yes, but you will need to coordinate your arrival through the health center to be certain of whether any pre- or post-arrival testing is necessary.
The College does not plan to offer on-campus access to vaccines. International students who did not have access to a WHO-authorized vaccine will be connected with local vaccine resources.
No, vaccination by Aug. 1 is still required.
All COVID-19 vaccines in use in the United States have been approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA). The emergency use authorization (EUA) designation of the COVID-19 vaccines facilitated their use during a public health emergency. EUA is only granted if safety and efficacy standards are met based on substantial testing and if the benefit of the vaccine outweighs the risks when used appropriately. The FDA is expected to move the COVID-19 vaccine from emergency-use status to full approval this summer.
The timing for full approval of the COVID-19 vaccines is not completely predictable, although at least one vaccine has already filed for this status. Students who delay vaccination until the FDA issues full authorization risk a delay in their return to campus. Waiting for full approval does not provide exemption from the Aug. 1 vaccination deadline.
It is unlikely that widespread masking policies will remain in place in August, but the disease trajectory has proven difficult to predict over the past 16 months. Lafayette will continue to follow guidance from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the Centers for Disease Control on policies to mitigate risk of the spread of COVID-19.
The object of widespread vaccination is to return to as close to a normal experience as possible. Vaccinated students will be able to travel freely, will be exempt from quarantine if exposed to someone who tests positive for COVID-19, will be exempt from testing, and will be able to experience most social activities in the least restrictive manner.
You would be required to:
No. However, no student will be permitted on campus unless the vaccine requirement is met or a documented exemption is approved.
Congregate housing settings have proven to carry a higher risk to the spread of many airborne diseases due in part to the numbers of individuals sharing enclosed spaces for long periods of time. On the other hand, classroom settings have proven to be a lower risk for transmission.
Faculty and staff do not live in the types of residential settings students do. The College reserves the right to amend its policy on employee vaccination in the future, however. Faculty and staff are strongly encouraged to get the vaccine, and many continue to take advantage of increased local vaccine availability.
Please contact the Office of Admissions with questions about enrollment.
As a residential college, Lafayette’s primary learning environment is face to face, and the College has been eager to return to this mode of learning. Lafayette is planning for fall courses to be delivered in person. There are no current plans for any courses to be offered remotely this fall.
Lafayette is planning for as normal of a semester as possible and will not guarantee that courses will be available online. However, the College will assist quarantining or isolating students with their academic progress just as it would in other health-related circumstances.