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COVID-19 Vaccine Information

Vaccines are a longstanding medical and public health tool used to control infectious disease. Public health officials recommend vaccine as an important step to bring the COVID-19 pandemic under control. We all benefit from vaccination, and Ithaca College students are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 disease and we strongly encourage all faculty, staff, and affiliates to do the same.

COVID-19 Vaccination Card Submission

Thank you for being vaccinated against COVID-19 disease! Once you have completed your vaccine series, please submit a legible copy of your vaccination card as follows:

DEADLINE FOR STUDENTS TO SUBMIT THEIR COVID-19 VACCINE DOCUMENTATION IS JULY 19, 2021.

* For the few students unable to obtain the vaccine due to medical/disability or sincerely held religious beliefs, please complete the applicable form at the bottom of this page to request an exemption from the Ithaca College requirement to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Important Reminders and Upcoming Deadlines for Students

Ithaca College REQUIRES that all enrolled students for the 2021-22 academic year MUST receive the COVID-19 vaccine and be fully immunized PRIOR to their arrival for the fall semester. Students who have not submitted vaccine documentation to the Hammond Health Center and have not received a college-approved exception to this requirement WILL NOT be able to complete move-in and/or participate in fall classes/extracurricular activities. 

**IMPORTANT REMINDER**

You are not considered fully immunized for COVID-19 until 14-plus days following your FINAL vaccine dose. If you have received a two-dose (Pfizer or Moderna) vaccine series, this will occur 14 days following your SECOND vaccine dose. You must receive both a FIRST and SECOND DOSE in order for it to be counted.

**UPCOMING DATES AND DEADLINES**

  • JUNE 14-20 | Students who are receiving a two-dose vaccine series (Pfizer or Moderna) should plan to receive their first dose no later than this week.
  • JULY 18 | Students who are receiving the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine should plan to receive their dose by this date.
  • JULY 19 | Deadline for students to submit vaccine documentation to Hammond Health Center at healthcenter@ithaca.edu.

About the Vaccine

We encourage you to familiarize yourself with the COVID-19 vaccines and the benefits of vaccination. Please be aware that the Pfizer (approved for age 12 and older) and Moderna (approved for age 18 and older) vaccines require that you receive two doses to be fully immunized; whereas, the Johnson & Johnson (approved for age 18 and older) vaccine requires one dose. You may not have a choice of which vaccine that you receive as it may depend upon what a specific vaccine clinic has available. The following organizations maintain extensive resources on their webpages regarding COVID-19 vaccines:

The vaccine is strongly recommended for Ithaca College employees. Students accessing campus during the summer and for the fall 2021 semester are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 disease.

Vaccine Eligibility

All individuals over the age of 12 who live, work, or go to school in New York State are eligible for a vaccine.

Notifications about Tompkins County Vaccination Clinics

To receive local updates from the Tompkins County Health Department regarding COVID-19 and vaccine distribution in our community:

Vaccine Distribution and Appointments

On Campus

There are currently no on-campus clinics scheduled. Please place your name on the Tompkins County Vaccine Registry to be notified when local appointments become available.

Tompkins County Vaccination Site

We strongly encourage that you place your name on the Tompkins County Vaccine Registry to be notified when local appointments become available. This registry is only for those who have not received a first dose elsewhere. If you received a first dose elsewhere and require a second dose, please use the Second Dose Notification system instead. Please DO NOT call Cayuga Health System or Tompkins County Health Department requesting an appointment.

Once you receive your first dose of the vaccine, they will schedule your second dose at the same time. You will not need to re-register for an appointment to receive your second dose. 

The primary vaccination clinic for Tompkins County is located at the Shops at Ithaca Mall, in the old Sears store at the back of the mall near the movie theater (40 Catherwood Road, Ithaca NY 14850). 

Tompkins County Pharmacies Serving as Vaccination Sites

CVS PharmacyKinney Drugs, Walgreens, and Wegmans are offering vaccination appointments when vaccine supply is available.

New york State Vaccination Clinics

All individuals over the age of 12 who live, work, or go to school in New York State can register for appointments at the New York State vaccination clinic sites if appointments are available. 

Vaccine Exemption

For the few students unable to obtain the vaccine due to medical/disability or sincerely held religious beliefs, please complete the applicable form below to request an exemption from the Ithaca College requirement to be vaccinated against COVID-19. We are making the forms available to students now however we will not be evaluating any requests until July 14th and 15th. Students will be notified of decisions the week of July 19th to their campus email address. If you are requesting an exemption and are on campus for the summer, please plan to surveillance test weekly until you receive a decision on your exemption request.  

We encourage students to use this time to educate themselves about the benefits of vaccination and weigh any concerns related to vaccination against the possibility of contracting COVID-19 disease, which can result in severe illness or hospitalization even for younger populations. Students should be aware that the widespread surveillance testing program that was available during the spring 2021 semester will not be offered in the same way during the fall 2021 semester. Unvaccinated students will be required to comply with all health and safety protocols, which may differ from those applicable to vaccinated students. For the health and safety of the campus community, unvaccinated students may be subject to additional restrictions regarding participation in certain activities or events. 

Frequently Asked Questions After Vaccination

We greatly appreciate that you are vaccinated to protect yourself against developing severe COVID-19 disease, and to benefit the broader community by contributing to bringing the pandemic under control. Students who are fully vaccinated are exempt from surveillance testing provided the following conditions are met:

  1. You must be a non-athlete. Athletes MUST continue to participate in surveillance testing even if vaccinated. There will be no change to the required two times per week testing for varsity athletes (this does not apply to students participating in club or intramural sports). The twice weekly testing frequency must be continued to comply with Liberty League competition rules as well as our Return to Sport Guidelines approved by the Tompkins County Health Department. Athletes should continue to submit your tests to a blue collection bin before 11:30 am on your regular Monday/Thursday or Tuesday/Friday schedule.
     
  2. You must be fully immunized. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) currently defines full immunization as two weeks after your final dose. This means:

    a.) If you received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, this will be two weeks after your dose.

    b.) If you received the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine, this will be two weeks after your second dose.

    c.) Being vaccinated with a vaccine that has been approved for use internationally, but NOT in the United States (e.g., AstraZeneca), will not exempt you from surveillance testing at this time. You must have received the Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson vaccine in order to be eligible.
     

  3. Your immunization card must be on record with Hammond Health. Once fully immunized, submit your card to Hammond Health Center at healthcenter@ithaca.edu. You may cease surveillance testing and your IC Health Badge will be adjusted accordingly two weeks after your final vaccine dose.
     
  4. You must be asymptomatic. You are required to continue completing the Daily Health Screening that you receive from the Center for Counseling, Health, and Wellness. This will keep your IC Health Badge “green.” Should you become symptomatic for COVID-19, please contact Hammond Health Center to schedule an appointment for testing. 

Even when vaccinated, you must maintain all other public health requirements like completing the Daily Health Screening, wearing face coverings, maintaining six feet of physical distance and avoiding gatherings, and practicing good hand hygiene.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently updated their guidance that vaccinated persons with an exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 are not required to quarantine if they meet all of the following criteria:

  • Are fully vaccinated. (You are considered fully vaccinated two weeks following receipt of the second dose in a 2-dose series, or two weeks following receipt of one dose of a single-dose vaccine.)
  • Are within 3 months following receipt of the last dose in the series
  • Have remained asymptomatic since the current COVID-19 exposure

Persons who do not meet all 3 of the above criteria must continue to follow current quarantine guidance after exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. Please note that the Tompkins County Health Department (or appropriate health department based on your residence) makes the final determination about quarantine, and not Ithaca College.

Students do not need to complete the Emergency Travel Request form if they are able to travel directly to their vaccine appointment and back in the same day.

Students must complete the Emergency Travel Request form prior to traveling for your vaccine if you must go outside of Tompkins County and remain overnight. Please complete this form at least two weeks in advance if possible. If you are required to remain overnight, then you must complete the re-entry process which includes a negative test with Hammond Health Center. Depending upon your day and time of arrival, this may require quarantine in Emerson Hall for residential students or in your independent living arrangement for off campus students. 

Yes, once you are vaccinated please scan or take a picture of your vaccination card and email it to healthcenter@ithaca.edu so that we may update your vaccination records. This will also expedite the process should you be named a close contact of a positive case, so that we are able to work more quickly with the health department to assess whether or not quarantine will be required.

While you are not required to send your vaccination card to the college, fully vaccinated employees will be exempted from surveillance testing if the following conditions are met:

  1. You must be fully immunized. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) currently defines full immunization as two weeks after your final dose. This means:

    a.) If you received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, this will be two weeks after your dose.

    b.) If you received the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine, this will be two weeks after your second dose.

    c.) Being vaccinated with a vaccine that has been approved for use internationally, but NOT in the United States (e.g., AstraZeneca), will not exempt you from surveillance testing at this time. You must have received the Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson vaccine in order to be eligible.
     

  2. Your immunization card must be on record with the Office of Human Resources. Once fully immunized, upload a copy of your COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card here. The Office of Human Resources will email approval when you may cease surveillance testing.
     
  3. You must be asymptomatic. You are required to continue completing the Daily Health Screening. Should you become symptomatic for COVID-19, you must not come to campus until you seek medical advice from the Cayuga Health System's telemedicine service or your own health care provider. 

Even if you send your card to Human Resources, please keep the card in a safe place so that you are able to provide the information to the contact tracer or health department should you be named a close contact of a positive case. Individuals meeting the CDC criteria described above may be exempt from needing to quarantine.

Individuals may experience an immune response after receiving the second dose of the vaccine. Symptoms can range from mild to relatively robust symptoms. If you are experiencing mild symptoms but are able to report to class or work, these symptoms will present challenges when completing the Daily Health Screening. If you were feeling fine the day before your second dose, and then the next day or two after getting the vaccine are experiencing symptoms consistent with that second dose (e.g., fatigue, chills, body aches, or sore arm), when completing the Daily Health Screening you can say “no” to having COVID-19 symptoms and report to class or work as long as you feel that you are able to do so successfully.

If you are a student attending class or activities on campus, and then begin to experience additional or heightened symptoms, please return to your residence hall/apartment or off-campus living arrangement and contact Hammond Health Center at 607-274-3177.

If you are an employee that has reported to work, and then begin to experience additional or heightened symptoms, please alert your supervisor so that they can determine next steps which may include that you must leave campus for the remainder of the day.

If your symptoms are significant, please do not proceed to class or work, and fill out your Daily Health Screening accordingly. If a student, schedule an appointment with Hammond Health Center at 607-274-3177. If an employee, schedule an appointment with the telemedicine provider or your own health provider, and let your supervisor know.