Fall Vaccine FAQS

Have a question about vaccinations for fall 2021? You’ll find the answers here.

Is the vaccine mandate for both residential and commuter students?

It is required for all students: residential and commuter students, undergraduate and graduate students. The only exceptions are (1) those who are enrolled in fully online degree programs that offer no on-campus instruction, activities, or services and (2) those who qualify under New Jersey law for medical or religious exemptions.

Will COVID-19 vaccination be required for University employees?

The University is seeking guidance from the State of New Jersey on this question. At this time the University cannot require that employees get vaccinated. However, we continue to strongly urge every faculty and staff member to do so, and a large number of our employees have already done so. Now that vaccinations are widely available, we expect that most, if not all, of employees will be fully vaccinated by the time the fall semester begins.

What if I don’t want to get vaccinated?

The requirement applies to every student, undergraduate and graduate, commuter and residential, except (1) those who are enrolled in fully online degree programs that offer no on-campus instruction, activities, or services and (2) those who qualify under New Jersey law for medical or religious exemptions.

Will there be any fully online course options?

The fall semester schedule includes courses that are taught fully online. However, the great majority of undergraduate courses will require at least some on-campus participation, and even a student who takes one or more online courses will generally have to come to campus for a wide range of services and activities. Students in these courses will still need to be immunized. For help in planning your course schedule, please contact your advisor or your Dean’s Office.

I have a medical or religious reason why I cannot be immunized. What is the process for me to gain an exemption?

New Jersey law permits people to refuse a vaccine for medical or religious reasons. The University Health Center website has set up a process for students to file a request for exemption for medical or religious reasons. You will find exemption forms and more information on the University Health Center’s immunizations page.

Could a third party that accepts a student for an internship, practicum or clinical rotation still require the student to be immunized against COVID-19 and other diseases?

Yes. Students who are enrolled in programs that require for-credit experience at non-University locations, such as those who are doing practicums at health care facilities, should be aware that those host sites may have their own vaccination policies, which are separate from the policies of the University.

Students must comply with the policies of the host site. Those who want to be exempt from vaccination for medical or religious reasons should request an exemption directly from their host site. Please be aware that not all sites may be able to provide such exemptions. Any exemption granted by the University does not automatically apply to these sites.

What if I’m having difficulty getting a vaccination?

All Montclair State students and employees now can get their COVID-19 vaccine on campus!

Starting May 8, Passaic County will provide the Moderna vaccine on Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., at the Center for Clinical Studies, 147 Clove Road, Little Falls, NJ (located next to Lot 60). To register, visit: passaiccountynj.org/covidvax. Registrations are strongly recommended, but walk-ins are also accepted. Additional information can also be found on the Restart website here.

Numerous locations in Essex County also have vaccines readily available. You can find those at the Essex County Covid website. Montclair State University will be hosting vaccine clinics throughout the summer; information will be listed on this page as they become scheduled.

What if I’m an international student and I can’t get vaccinated in my home country before coming to campus in the fall?

Information and procedures for international students will be available from the Office of Global Engagement. Send email to global@montclair.edu.

When students are vaccinated, will we need to follow the same social distancing and mask-wearing protocols?
The University will continue to follow the COVID safety guidelines established by state and federal authorities. If those guidelines change, we will communicate that to campus.

I’ve been vaccinated, what is the process for showing proof of vaccination to the University? Does reporting it on Hawk Check suffice?

Montclair State University students can submit their proof of vaccination via My Health Portal as they do now for all other immunizations.Submission instructions for non-Montclair State students will be available soon. Reporting your vaccination status on Hawk Check is requested, but it is not the official process students will use to submit their proof of vaccination.

If all of my classes are online, do I still need to get vaccinated?

Students who are enrolled in fully online degree programs that offer no on-campus instruction, activities or services are not required to get vaccinated. There will be some courses that are taught fully online. However, the great majority of undergraduate courses require on-campus participation, and even a student taking one or more online courses will generally have to come to campus for a wide range of services and activities. Students who are simply taking some or all of their courses online (and are not enrolled in one of our fully online degree programs) are not exempt from the vaccine requirement.

How can the University require students to be vaccinated, when the FDA has approved the vaccines for emergency use only?

After careful analysis, the University has concluded this is allowed under both federal and state law. Montclair State joins Rutgers, Princeton and many other leading universities in requiring vaccination for students returning in the fall.

The FDA, with the CDC’s support, has authorized these vaccines under the Emergency Use Authorization act, which allows this type of approval process in times of an emergency. The science indicates that these vaccines are safe and effective. Considering the devastation this virus has caused to countless families we feel strongly that this is the right path to go down. It is the best way we can provide the best possible educational experience for our students.

How do I submit my proof of vaccination?

Follow the steps outlined in the MSU student health portal to upload proof of your COVID-19 vaccination.

We will be expanding this list over time, so please check back. You may also contact the Office of Residence Life at reslife@montclair.edu, or send an email to coronavirus@montclair.edu or reopen@montclair.edu