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COVID-19 Vaccine Policy Update for Students


Dear Members of the Santa Clara University Community,

Spring days on our beautiful campus bring a hopeful spirit and optimistic energy, particularly as we see the light at the end of a long year. With our intent to fully return to campus this fall with on-campus residential housing, campus activities and in-person classes for our undergraduate students, I write today to share that Santa Clara University will require graduate and undergraduate students to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 for fall 2021. The requirement will go into effect once at least one of the three currently available vaccines has received full approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration or the start of fall term, whichever is later.

In making this decision, we once again turn to our core guiding principles that have consistently anchored our decision-making since the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic: (1) protect the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff, and (2) offer a rigorous, transformational education in the long tradition of Jesuit education. Requiring vaccines is an important aspect of our return to campus and is critical to reducing the spread of the virus.  Vaccinations offer an added measure of safety, especially in congregant residence hall and classroom settings.

Our collaborative governance committees are developing policy recommendations pertaining to vaccine expectations for staff and faculty.

Reasonable accommodations for medical exemptions from COVID-19 vaccination will be considered. Details about how this will be done, and how students can obtain medical exemptions, will be forthcoming. 

As last week’s email to students noted, we continue to strongly encourage everyone to get vaccinated. The supply of vaccines and availability of appointments is now more widespread, and we will continue to assist students seeking to get vaccinated, including students from outside the United States. We realize you may have additional questions in the weeks and months ahead, so we will be updating our Vaccine FAQ page on the Prepared SCU website.  

Thank you for your continued efforts to protect the health and safety of our entire community. With everyone’s vigilance and care, we can look forward to being together on our beloved campus this fall. 

In hope, 

Lisa A. Kloppenberg
Acting President