Summer and Fall Vaccination Requirements

Determining Our Future Plans

We are grateful to the entire Saint Mary's community for taking the steps needed to complete the Spring semester strong and together. Now we turn to how to create plans that will allow us to return to a more normal campus experience in the fall. 

It is clear that our ability to remain together for in-person instruction depends on suppressing the spread of COVID-19 in our community. The broad immunization of our student body is critical to achieving this goal. Because we are a congregate residential community, we must take every step available to prevent this highly infectious disease. Therefore, have expanded our existing student immunization requirements to include the COVID-19 vaccine. This additional requirement became effective beginning with the Summer 2021 term.

FAQs

The CDC continues to provide guidance for people who have been vaccinated, and it is encouraging to see that vaccinations are helping to suppress the spread of COVID-19. Every new guideline gives us hope that we will be able to provide you a more traditional campus experience.  

Our goals for 2021-22 are to:

  • Offer face-to-face instruction as our primary mode of education
  • Return to a traditional two-semester schedule with fall, Thanksgiving, winter, and spring breaks
  • Remove restrictions placed on residence halls 
  • Host a wide array of curricular and co-curricular events on our campus (with food!)
  • Reduce or eliminate masking requirements in many spaces
  • Allow expansions to size of student gatherings
  • Continue to share classes and extracurricular activities with Notre Dame and Holy Cross
  • Reopen all dining venues
  • Resume all mentored research opportunities
  • Allow visitors once again on our campus

Taking the Next Steps

In partnership with Meijer Pharmacy, earlier this spring, Saint Mary’s College held two COVID-19 vaccination clinics for students, faculty, staff, and invited groups. More than 1,000 members of our campus community were fully vaccinated during this time. This was an important step in immunizing our student and employee population. Because vaccinations are required, prior to returning to campus, students will need to upload the information by clicking the documentation button below. We know that some individuals concerns about the decision to require vaccinations. As with other required vaccinations, verified exemptions for medical or religious reasons will be accomodated.  ​

 


Frequently Asked Questions about Our Vaccination Requirements

+Will Saint Mary’s College require students to be immunized against COVID-19 for the summer term as part of their regular immunization requirements?

Yes, Saint Mary’s College is requiring all undergraduate and graduate students taking classes on campus to be fully vaccinated beginning with the Summer 2021 term. In addition to the COVID-19 vaccine, the College requires the following immunizations: tetanus, hepatitis B, varicella, MMR; and meningitis; and strongly recommends hepatitis A and HPV.

+Will there be exemptions to immunization against COVID-19?

Undergraduate and graduate students attending classes on campus may request an exemption from the vaccination requirement for verified medical or religious reasons. Information on how to request medical or religious reasons exemptions can be found here.

+Should I get the vaccine if I have had COVID?

Generally, having had COVID-19 should not prevent you from getting the vaccine. In fact, the CDC recommends that people who have had COVID-19 should receive the vaccine for continued protection against the virus. However, if you were treated for COVID-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma, you should wait 90 days before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. If in doubt, speak with your doctor, or with the individual administering the vaccine.

+I received my vaccine at the Saint Mary’s vaccination clinic. Do I still need to show proof of vaccination for in-person attendance?

Yes, current students will need to upload the information using this link to Health and Counseling. Employees can upload their information to HR using this link.

+I am an admitted student planning to enroll for Fall 2021, and received my vaccine at the Saint Mary’s vaccination clinic. Should I use the same link to upload my proof of vaccination?

Later in the summer, you will be required to complete a health form with other vaccination and medical information, however, you can complete the COVID-19 vaccination portion now. This link will take you to Medicat, the Health Center medical record system. A record will be created for you 48 hours after your deposit is processed, and you will need to create a log in the first time you use the system. You can then complete the COVID-19 portion of the immunization form, and upload an image of your COVID vaccination card.

+Will I be able to register for classes for Fall 2021 without having been vaccinated yet?

Yes, you will be able to register for classes prior to vaccination, but you will have to show proof of vaccination (or receive an exemption) before moving onto campus or attending classes.

+Will there be an option to be fully remote for the fall for students who aren’t vaccinated?

Unless you are enrolled in one of our fully online graduate programs, you cannot be assured of a remote option for the fall.

+For any student who wants to attend in Fall 2021 but does not wish to be vaccinated, what will their options be?

As a reminder, students may request an exemption for medical or religious reasons. We announced this requirement early so students may make their decisions about attendance before enrolling or paying tuition.

+What is the College's stance on international students who receive a vaccine that may not be authorized for use in the US, such as the AstraZeneca or Sputnik vaccines?

We look forward to welcoming international students to campus. At this point, there are three vaccines authorized for use in the United States and recommended by the CDC. Others may be approved by the fall. International students who can prove that they have been fully vaccinated abroad with a US authorized vaccine will not need to be vaccinated upon arrival.

+Why should I get vaccinated?

According to the CDC, the vaccines are all safe and effective, and studies have shown they prevent severe illness and death from the virus. See https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/faq.html for information.

+I would like to wait a little longer to get my vaccine. How long can I wait?

You will need to submit proof of vaccination (either one dose or two, depending on the vaccine you get) at least two weeks before move in day, or two weeks before your first day of class. With most students moving on August 19 and most classes starting August 23, getting your first shot in early July should put you on track to meet this requirement.

+If I get my first vaccine dose in Indiana, can I get my second dose in my home state?

Each state is making independent decisions on how they administer their vaccines. Saint Mary’s cannot guarantee you can get a second dose in your home state, and encourages you to check with your state’s health department or vaccine provider in your area.

+If I get my first vaccine dose in another state, can I get my second dose in Indiana?

Yes, you can get your second dose in Indiana.

+Can I take classes or participate in band and other extracurricular activities at Notre Dame if I am not vaccinated?

The University of Notre Dame is requiring all students enrolled in courses, active in student organizations, or in band to provide proof of having a COVID-19 vaccine. That includes Saint Mary’s students.