COVID-19 Information about Graduate Education, the 2021-22 academic year
On June 6, 2021, Virginia Tech President Tim Sands announced that all students are required to receive COVID-19 vaccinations prior to the start of the fall 2021 semester, with exemptions for medical reasons and sincerely held religious beliefs.
Students should visit this site for more information about vaccination requirements, confirming vaccination status, and requesting an exemption. The deadline for students to report that they have received the full course of vaccine doses (one or two, depending on the vaccine) is Aug. 6, 2021.
Dean DePauw followed up the announcement with a note to graduate students on June 11: "Many of you will have received an email from both Vice President for Human Resources Bryan Garey (to employees) and Vice President for Student Affairs Frank Shushok (to students). Because it might be confusing, I want to confirm that as a member of our graduate student community, you are to follow the guidance that was sent to all students from Frank Shushok. Many of you also receive employee-facing communications because you work for the university, but as a graduate student you are required to upload your vaccination information by August 6 through the Schiffert Health Center Online Student Health Portal. Please read the details from Frank Shushok and make sure if you are not already vaccinated that you do so in time to be fully vaccinated before the Fall semester. If you have questions, visit the student frequently asked questions page, which also contains specific information for international students.
"In addition to the emails you have already received, the Cranwell International Center will be sending additional guidance directly to all currently enrolled and new international students as well."
Virginia Tech has published a summer and fall 2021 operations plans and will continue to adjust university plans, procedures, and protocols as circumstances and federal and state guidance surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic continue to evolve.
On May 27, the University published updated information about wearing masks on campuses, social distancing, and the size of gatherings, based on the state's updated guidelines. The guidance states that those who are fully vaccinated need not wear masks in most indoor situations.
The university anticipates returning to a more normal semester in fall 2021, which begins Aug. 23 and ends on Dec. 15. This includes returning classrooms to their normal capacities, and reopening academic programs and student support offices, with services being offered in person.
The University continues to work with the area health districts to ensure vaccine availability for Virginia Tech students and employees. The state recently announced that all Virginians ages 12 years and older are eligible for vaccinations.
In this Ready section, you'll find the following resources:
- The university's Interim Summer/Fall 2021 COVID-19 Operational Plan
- Graduate School guidelines for students with graduate assistantships
- Resources and recommendations for online teaching and testing
- COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions
- Vaccination Frequently Asked Questions for Students
- University response and plans related to COVID-19
Graduate students are integral members of the teaching community at Virginia Tech, and their well-being should be given consideration equal to that of any other instructor in the planning and execution of courses.
(updated July 1, 2021)