High Vaccination Rates Among Students, Staff Set Up More Normal Fall

Trees on the Lawn changing colors

Editor’s note: This story has been updated since publication to reflect current vaccination numbers.


mong students eligible to enroll in classes on Grounds at the University of Virginia, 90% have reported being fully vaccinated against COVID-19, as of Thursday, July 29. Additionally, 88% of Academic Division employees have reported being fully vaccinated. 

University officials shared those numbers in an email message to the UVA community earlier this month, along with directions for reporting vaccinations to the University. All students were asked to provide proof of vaccination by July 1; all Academic Division staff had to report their vaccination status by July 23.

All students who wish to live and work in-person at UVA during the 2021-22 academic year are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19, unless they were granted a medical or religious exemption. All faculty and staff are also expected to be vaccinated unless they have a medical or religious reason not to get the vaccine.

Any students, faculty members or staff who are not vaccinated must comply with public health requirements, including taking a COVID-19 test at least weekly and wearing a mask both indoors and outdoors when in common spaces. For those who are fully vaccinated, masking and testing requirements, as well as gathering and travel limits, will no longer be in effect. One exception is the University Transit System, which will require all passengers on public transportation to wear a face mask regardless of vaccination status. 

“We want to thank every member of our community who has gotten vaccinated and has shared their vaccination record with the University,” UVA Provost Liz Magill and Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer J.J. Davis wrote in the email. 

“As we have said before, rising vaccination rates and lower local case counts will permit the University to return to a much more ‘normal’ academic year, with classes in person and most University operations at their full pre-pandemic capacity.”   

The email included directions for reporting vaccination status to the University. Anyone wishing to be vaccinated can make an appointment by calling 434-297-4829 or can schedule an appointment here.

The email also outlined a return to more normal operations for the fall semester, including regular classroom instruction with classrooms configured as they were prior to the pandemic, a return to pre-pandemic protocols in research labs (as long as researchers are vaccinated), and a return to full-scale dining operations.    

Travel Guidance

UVA lifted prohibitions on University-related international travel for faculty and staff last month, replacing it with a policy requiring employees to register all such travel on UVA’s International Travel Registry no later than seven days before departure.

Faculty and staff are responsible for abiding by the University’s regulations governing international travel, especially regarding export controls and travel to sanctioned countries. In addition, University employees are required to abide by Center for Disease Control guidelines for international travel during COVID-19 before, during and after such travel, including by being fully vaccinated before undertaking travel.

Student Life

Though summer orientation remains virtual, most student activities will return to pre-pandemic operations by the start of the fall semester.

New undergraduates living on Grounds will move in beginning in mid-August. More details about move-in are available on the Housing & Residence Life website. Starting with the first day of Move-In Weekend on Aug. 18, Wahoo Welcome activities will take place daily and nightly to welcome both new and returning students. A full schedule of these community-building activities will continue into the fall.

Intramural and Recreation Sports gyms and pools no longer require reservations, and UVA Athletics has announced that all home sporting events will return to 100% capacity, with any additional health protocols announced at a later date.

The new Student Health and Wellness building is scheduled to open at the end of August, with services rolling out through September. The state-of-the-art facility features spaces designed to promote student well-being, including a teaching kitchen, student lounge and living room, an art therapy room and more. Departmental services include Counseling and Psychological Services, Medical Services, Health Promotion and the Student Disability Access Center.

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