May 3 Student Memo

Information regarding student COVID-19 vaccine requirements.

Dear Students,

We want to thank those of you who are currently living on-campus at MICA or are in the immediate surrounding area. The tremendous success of our physical reopening this semester is due, in part, to your dedication to keeping yourself and your community safe. The extraordinary numbers reflected in our asymptomatic testing program all semester—ranging from 0% no higher than 0.58% positivity—demonstrate your commitment.

We further know that for those of you not in Baltimore, instead spread across this country and the globe, you are doing everything possible to protect yourself and your loved ones, while navigating the demands of your rigorous courses. We thank you as well.

As we look forward, and in consultation with our epidemiologist team, the medical science is clear that there is one primary path to returning our campus community to as close to normal as possible - by way of the numerous safe and effective vaccines that are now available. These vaccines, both U.S. based and globally, are proving on a daily basis that they are extremely safe and extraordinarily effective at reducing the risk of COVID-19 transmission and serious illness. As a result we will be requiring all students enrolled for in-person classes for Fall 2021 to be vaccinated against COVID-19.  Student Health Services will provide further information in the coming weeks, inclusive of how to provide the necessary documentation; medical and religious exemptions will be available for those who need them.

Some initial details:

  • In addition to the three U.S. approved vaccines (Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson), any vaccine approved by a foreign government will be accepted, thereby allowing internationally based students to be vaccinated where they are.
    • Internationally based students are strongly encouraged to get a U.S. approved vaccine if available to them.
  • All required vaccine doses must be received prior to arriving at MICA for the Fall semester. Students will not be allowed access to campus without proof of vaccination or a documented exemption.

Additionally, at the recommendation of the College’s consulting epidemiologists, any students living on-campus this summer will also be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19. This is expected to be a very small number of individuals, and Student Health Services will similarly provide details on this requirement in the coming days.

As vaccine availability continues to expand in the Baltimore area, MICA will continue to share that information with our community via One MICA Slack and the MICA / App. Those outside of the immediate area are encouraged to connect with their local health department for information about receiving a vaccine appointment or by using vaccines.gov if in the U.S.

Guidance on any vaccination requirements for faculty and staff will be provided at a later date.

We appreciate your support, and continued commitment to the health of the MICA community. We are convinced that through our collective efforts the College can reopen at near normal this Fall, and we are excited for that opportunity.


Sincerely,

Michael Z Patterson
Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students

Dr. Judith M. Kinney
Associate Vice President of Student Health and Wellness