Student Vaccination Requirement for Fall 2021

April 26, 2021

Dear Students,

As we approach the end of a successful spring semester—which included sustained low infection rates, our community’s demonstrated solidarity in embracing public health practices, and an increasing vaccination rate across our campus community—we are looking ahead to the fall 2021 semester with great anticipation. As we have written previously, Brandeis plans to offer a robust, safe, in-person experience in the fall, which will include many of the face-to-face experiences that students have had to experience virtually over the past year.

This transition to a “new normal” will be possible in large part due to the effectiveness and increasing availability of vaccines against COVID-19. As you know, these vaccines significantly reduce the spread of the virus, and have been shown to be effective at preventing serious illness and hospitalization. In Massachusetts, vaccines are also increasingly available, with anyone 16 or older now eligible for vaccination. Over the past week, Brandeis also successfully ran its own COVID-19 vaccination clinic, where students and employees were able to receive their first doses of the Pfizer vaccine. We are planning to continue offering these clinics throughout the spring and summer to provide a convenient and equitable way for community members to receive the vaccine.

To support our robust plans for the fall 2021 semester, and similarly to many other colleges and universities across the country, Brandeis University will require all new and returning students coming to campus to be fully vaccinated. Limited exemptions to this policy will be granted for medical or religious reasons.

Students must be fully vaccinated with an FDA-authorized vaccine by the start of the fall term. Proof of vaccination should be provided before the start of the fall semester by uploading your completed vaccination card to the Campus Passport once you have received your full dose. Students who are vaccinated through on-campus clinics will automatically be verified within the Passport. Thank you to those of you who have already uploaded your vaccination documentation.

For students who missed the first Pfizer vaccine clinic, we will be offering a clinic with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which requires only one shot, on Wednesday, May 5th. Students may also sign up for a first or second shot (even if obtained elsewhere) of the Pfizer vaccine during our May Pfizer Clinic on May 13 through 16. More information about signing up for these clinics will be forthcoming.

Brandeis will continue to offer on-campus vaccination at the start of the fall semester for students who are unable to obtain an FDA-authorized vaccine prior to the beginning of the semester. However, the easiest way to ensure that you return to campus fully vaccinated in the fall is to leave campus fully vaccinated in the spring by receiving a vaccination at one of our upcoming clinics.

We realize international students may have received vaccines that are different from those currently approved in the U.S. Brandeis and U.S. public health experts are still considering how such vaccinations should be treated. We will offer additional guidance as we get closer to the start of the semester.

Please visit the FAQs for additional information regarding the Brandeis student vaccination requirement.

Vaccines will not enable us to end all additional health precautions and it is imperative that everyone continue following all COVID-19 protocols through the end of this semester as well. However, a student community that is largely vaccinated will allow us to increase the in-person experiences that we are all longing for next semester. Thank you for doing your part in ensuring that we can have a robust, healthy, in-person experience in the fall.


Carol A. Fierke
Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs

Stew Uretsky
Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration

Raymond Lu-Ming Ou
Vice President of Student Affairs