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Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to questions about University response to coronavirus, returning to campus, academics, disability accommodations, and health and safety.

Vaccine Requirements

Yes, effective June 1, all students who access campus during the summer must be fully vaccinated with submitted documentation in the Student Patient Portal.  

For new students accessing campus beginning Fall 2021, you must upload your vaccination records to the Student Patient Portal by July 1.

Medical and religious exemption requests will be reviewed through the Student Patient Portal.

Students with questions about their vaccination status may contact the Barnes Center for further guidance.

We continue to monitor regulations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state public health officials regarding vaccinations obtained outside of the U.S. In accordance with the current guidance from the CDC, vaccinations that have been approved by the World Health Organization (WHO) for emergency use will be accepted as proof of vaccination at this time. As of June 1, 2021, the WHO has approved Moderna, Johnson & Johnson/Janssen, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Sinopharm, Sinovac and the Serum Institute of India vaccines. We encourage students who have received their COVID-19 vaccination abroad to upload their documentation in the Patient Portal. The WHO continues to review other vaccines and we will continue to update our community as new information becomes available.

Yes, you can receive another vaccine 28 days after your previous vaccine was administered.

If the same vaccine is available, you can receive your second dose in the U.S.

If the vaccine is not available in the U.S., you will need to restart the vaccination series with the new vaccine 28 days after your previous vaccine was administered.

In accordance with the current New York State COVID travel advisory, asymptomatic travelers are not required to quarantine. Quarantine is recommended, however, for travelers who are not fully vaccinated or have not recovered from laboratory confirmed COVID-19 during the previous 3 months. Please note that for the purposes of the travel advisory, New York State defines “fully vaccinated” as being 2 or more weeks after the final dose (e.g., first for Janssen/Johnson & Johnson, second for Pfizer and Moderna) of a vaccine approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or authorized by the FDA for emergency use. Vaccines that are not authorized by the FDA for emergency use or approved by the FDA do not satisfy this definition. 

Fully vaccinated individuals who have not recovered from COVID-19 in the past 3 months are recommended to get tested 3-5 days after arrival in New York from international travel.

All unvaccinated international travelers who have not recovered from COVID-19 in the past 3 months are recommended to get tested 3-5 days after arrival in New York, consider non-mandated self-quarantine (7 days if tested on day 3-5, otherwise 10 days), and avoid contact with people at higher risk for severe disease for 14 days, regardless of test result.

In accordance with the New York State COVID travel advisory, if you are unable to complete your vaccinations prior to traveling, and if you are asymptomatic, you are not required to quarantine. It is recommended that if you are unvaccinated and have not recovered from COVID-19 in the past 3 months that you to get tested 3-5 days after arrival in New York, consider non-mandated self-quarantine (7 days if tested on day 3-5, otherwise 10 days), and avoid contact with people at higher risk for severe disease for 14 days, regardless of test result.

As soon as you have received all recommended doses of an approved vaccine and uploaded documentation into the Student Patient Portal, you can access campus. Please note that you must wear a mask while on campus and participate in weekly COVID-19 screening until two weeks after your final vaccination dose.

Yes. To search for a vaccination site and schedule an appointment, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s search tool. This site also allows you to search based on vaccine.

No. You can plan to receive a WHO-approved vaccine in the U.S. 28 days after your previous vaccine was administered. Students with questions about their vaccination status may contact the Barnes Center for further guidance.

As soon as you have received all recommended doses of an approved vaccine and uploaded documentation into the Student Patient Portal, you can access campus. Please note that you must wear a mask while on campus and participate in weekly COVID-19 screening until two weeks after your final vaccination dose.

At this time, the Barnes Center at The Arch does not have a vaccine supply. A limited supply of the vaccine will be available in August and we will notify the campus community.

At this time, vaccination sites in Central New York are not requiring address documentation.

No. To access campus, you must either be fully vaccinated or have a valid medical or religious exemption on file with the Barnes Center. Students with questions about their vaccination status may contact the Barnes Center for further guidance.

The following vaccination records and documentation must be submitted to the Student Patient Portal:

  • Two Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccinations
  • Meningococcal meningitis (Type A) vaccination within the last five years and after the age of 16, or signed Meningitis Waiver Form
  • Tuberculosis (TB) Screening Questionnaire

Vaccination is the single most important step that we can all take to protect ourselves, loved ones, our campus and community from severe COVID-19 infection, hospitalization and death. A widely vaccinated community safeguards the health, wellness and safety of our students, faculty, staff and the surrounding community. Vaccination is a critical factor that will allow Syracuse University to return to more normal operations.

The expectation is that the vast majority of our community will receive a vaccination. The only exception to this requirement will be for individuals who have a medical or religious exemption.

We continue to monitor regulations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state public health officials regarding vaccinations obtained outside of the U.S. In accordance with the current guidance from the CDC, vaccinations that have been approved by the World Health Organization (WHO) for emergency use will be accepted as proof of vaccination at this time. As of June 1, 2021, the WHO has approved Moderna, Johnson & Johnson/Janssen, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Sinopharm, Sinovac and the Serum Institute of India vaccines. We encourage students who have received their COVID-19 vaccination abroad to upload their documentation in the Patient Portal. The WHO continues to review other vaccines and we will continue to update our community as new information becomes available.

The vaccination requirement will go into effect on June 1 for all students, faculty and staff who access campus over the summer months. All new and returning students, as well as faculty and staff, will be required to be vaccinated prior to the fall 2021 semester.

The vaccination requirement will apply to all new and returning students, faculty and staff for the Fall 2021 semester.

For students who have already been vaccinated or choose to be vaccinated at an off-campus location, please submit your documentation through the Student Patient Portal.

If a student has received their vaccination abroad and it is not the Johnson & Johnson, Moderna or Pfizer vaccine, the student should upload their vaccination documentation in the Patient Portal using the following directions:

  • Log into the Patient Portal with your SU NetID and password.
  • Select the “Immunizations” tab from the top menu, and select “Enter Dates”
  • Under the “Required Immunizations” heading, under “COVID-19 Vaccine NOT LISTED,” enter the dates(s) and click Submit.
  • Once the date(s) have been submitted, select the “Upload” tab from the top menu.
  • Follow all upload instructions.
  • In the drop-down menu labeled “Choose Document,” select “COVID Proof of Vaccination.”
  • Click “Select a file,” choose the file containing your vaccination documents, and click “Upload.”

Please note, documentation must be translated into English in order to be reviewed.

For faculty and staff, consistent with the University’s flu vaccination protocol, in the coming days you will receive and are expected to complete a brief COVID-19 Vaccine Status attestation questionnaire.

If you have already submitted a general medical or religious waiver, you do not need to take any further action. If you do not have a waiver form on file or it is written specifically for another vaccine, you must upload the form and supporting documentation into the Patient Portal:

  • Log in to the Patient Portal with your SU NetID and password.
  • Select “Forms” from the main menu.
  • Under Student Forms, select the “Medical-Religious Waiver” form to print the waiver to sign.
  • Once you have signed the waiver and added required supporting documentation, select “Upload” on the home screen.
  • Follow the upload instructions.
  • In the drop-down section, select “Medical or Religious Waiver Form.”
  • Select the completed waiver file to upload.

As summarized by the Centers for Disease Control (“CDC”): “Over 167 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through April 5, 2021. COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. COVID-19 vaccines were evaluated in tens of thousands of participants in clinical trials. The vaccines met FDA’s rigorous scientific standards for safety, effectiveness, and manufacturing quality needed to support emergency use authorization (EUA).” Anyone with concerns about receiving the vaccine should consult with their doctor.

Stay Safe Pledge

The Stay Safe Pledge will be modified to respond to changing pandemic-related conditions as well as health and safety directives from federal, state and local officials. Several changes have been made to the Stay Safe Pledge for Summer 2021, including:

  • Providing documentation of COVID-19 vaccination or exemption to the Barnes Center before accessing campus.
  • Wearing a mask and maintaining 6 feet of distance from others if not vaccinated and accessing campus with a medical or religious exemption.
  • Wearing a mask in certain designated locations, such as the Barnes Center health office or Flanagan Gymnasium health clinic.

During a public health emergency, certain aspects of your medical information—including a positive COVID-19 test result—can be required to be shared with public health authorities, including the Barnes Center. Failure to notify Syracuse University of a positive test result may hinder accurate contact tracing and put your close contacts—including roommates, classmates and faculty—at risk of spreading the virus. 

 

COVID-19 is often spread by individuals who do not know they are infected and exhibit no symptoms. Timely participation in contact tracing is essential to limiting the spread of the virus.

Important Information About COVID Testing

For all members of our campus community—including family members of our employees—the University will continue to provide convenient access to on-campus testing services at Kimmel Dining Hall during the summer months. The testing center’s hours of operations are:

  • Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-noon
  • Closed on Monday, July 5, in observance of Independence Day

No appointments are required. Please bring your Syracuse University I.D. and refrain from eating, drinking anything (including water), brushing your teeth or using mouthwash, chewing gum or using any tobacco products in the 30 minutes prior to testing. Parking is available at Comstock Avenue Garage.

No. Only students, faculty and staff who are accessing campus under a valid medical or religious vaccine exemption are required to test weekly. Compliance with this requirement will be monitored regularly.

Students can submit COVID-19 test results/documentation by logging into the Student Patient Portal. Log in using your SU NetID and password, click “Upload Forms,” select “COVID-19 Documents” and follow upload instructions.

Contact tracers will notify anyone who is determined to have been exposed by phone and their University email.

Working closely with the Onondaga County Department of Health, Syracuse University created our own contact tracing team. Acknowledging the personal nature of this task, the unique attributes of an academic environment and the broad diversity represented across our campus community, we believe that it’s important that the duties and responsibilities associated with contact tracing be performed by culturally competent individuals who themselves represent our community.

Students, faculty and staff will be contacted by phone and via their Syracuse University email. It is critically important that your current local address and phone number are updated in MySlice and we strongly encourage all members of the campus community to ensure that their information is updated and to regularly monitor your University email.

The Center for Disability Resources and the Office of Equal Opportunity, Inclusion and Resolution Services have fully participated in the Fall 2020 Task Force, which includes a subcommittee on Disability-related Considerations to ensure that the concerns of people with disabilities are reflected in policies and that accommodations are easily accessible.

Quarantine and Isolation

If a student tests positive, the University will deploy its response protocol, which prioritizes the health of the student as well as the safety and well-being of the community. The student will be immediately moved via a Syracuse University medical transport to isolation housing. These rooms will be physically separated from other residential student rooms, have a private bathroom, and be stocked with a thermometer, sanitizing wipes, tissues, soap, hand sanitizer and toiletries. While isolated, the student will be assigned a case manager to support all academic, health, housing and dining needs. For those students who are ill or asymptomatically positive, to the degree reasonably feasible, these isolated students will be encouraged to continue academic activities remotely or be provided with academic accommodations due to illness.

The contact tracing process will identify all close contacts of the positive individual during the timeframe the individual was likely contagious. All those close contacts will be directed to quarantine. Some of those close contacts will likely be others in the class, but not all. If a faculty member tests positive, that faculty member must isolate until a negative test is achieved. Consequently, it follows that this faculty member cannot be in a classroom for that period.

Students in quarantine and isolation are contacted by their pod leader, normally a student services staff member, and provided with their email and cell phone number.  Pod leaders are responding to emails and texts with requests and concerns from students almost 24/7. They are responsible for facilitating all student services needs including facilities, food services, academic and logistical assistance (e.g. comfort items, how to get packages and deliveries, the process for being cleared by the health department and the COVID office for release). Students can obtain health and counseling services by calling the Barnes Center, and if they need to be seen in person they are provided with transportation to and from the Barnes Center from the quarantine or isolation site. 

Rooms are pre-stocked with shelf-stable snacks, drinks, condiments and plastic utensils. Meals are delivered to each isolation location and labeled with the student’s name. Students can order food for delivery, as long as they use a contactless payment method. Students can also have pharmacy items delivered by the Barnes Center pharmacy and the Bookstore.

Students in isolation (those who have tested positive whether asymptomatic or symptomatic) receive a daily call from a Barnes Center healthcare provider who monitors their symptoms and vitals. A Syracuse University contact tracer also reaches out to students regularly, and students may also be contacted by the Onondaga County Health Department.

Students in quarantine and isolation in Skyhalls or South Campus apartments are allowed to leave their rooms to do laundry, pick up food or deliveries from designated areas, to visit health care providers and for daily scheduled outdoor time. Students quarantining in the Sheraton must remain in their rooms.

All students in quarantine or isolation provide a detailed guide from their pod leader that includes:

  • Contact information
  • What to pack
  • Quarantine or isolation procedures and policies
  • Health, Wellness and Pharmacy information
  • Food Services and outside food delivery information
  • Laundry services and schedules
  • Facilities information
  • Academic information
  • Information about engagement and activities
  • Package drop-off and delivery
  • Additional information about COVID-19

Financial Assistance

The pandemic has created financial hardship for many in our community. Please know there may be financial assistance available.

Masks

Effective Monday, May 24, and until further notice, Syracuse University’s policy is as follows:

Masking Outdoors

  • Fully vaccinated members of our campus community (students, faculty and staff) do not need to wear a mask while outdoors on the Syracuse University campus.
  • Unvaccinated members of our campus community should continue to wear a mask while outdoors in the company of others on the Syracuse University campus.
  • All individuals, regardless of vaccine status, will be supported if they choose to wear a mask while outdoors on the Syracuse University campus.
  • All visitors to campus (i.e., campus tour groups, other short-term visitors) must adhere to the masking policy above while on campus in outdoor settings.

Masking Indoors

  • Fully vaccinated members of our campus community (students, faculty and staff) do not need to wear a mask or social distance while indoors on campus.
  • Unvaccinated members of our campus community (students, faculty and staff) should continue to wear a mask and practice social distancing indoors.
  • All individuals, regardless of vaccine status, will be supported if they choose to wear a mask while indoors on the Syracuse University campus.
  • All visitors to campus (i.e., campus tour groups, other short-term visitors) must adhere to the policy above while inside buildings on campus.

Yes. Any individual accessing our campus—including visitors and contractors—is expected to follow the masking policy above that applies to students, faculty and staff.

Yes. All individuals, regardless of vaccine status, will be supported if they choose to wear a mask while on the Syracuse University campus.

Housing

Yes, you will be able to receive a prorated room and board credit dated to the day you left your on-campus housing assignment, provided that you move all of your belongings out of your residence, follow check-out procedures as instructed, and return your key before you leave.

You would first need to register with the Center for Disability Resources (CDR - formerly the Office of Disability Services). If approved, the CDR will alert you that you are eligible to participate in the COVID Medical Consideration process, and will be able to request a housing relocation or accommodation.

First- and second-year students are required to reside on campus. Third-year students and above do not have a housing requirement and can therefore seek off-campus housing after they have completed their on-campus requirement. Off-Campus and Commuter Services is a good resource for students living off campus.

If you are uncomfortable living in your on-campus housing assignment, you can explore a distance-learning option. If you complete a full year of distance learning, you will not need to reside on campus your third year to fulfill the housing requirement.

We are still working through this and will provide an update when we have confirmed information to share.

Not during quarantine. After the student is released from quarantine, students in the same residence hall can interact as long as they follow the guidelines in the Stay Safe Pledge as well as residential policies and directives.

No, students can’t visit students in South Campus apartments or in other residence halls.

No they will not be able to visit other South Campus apartments just as students living in residence halls will not be able to visit other residence halls.

No, students will be moved to isolation housing.

Yes.

Health Promotion and Prevention

All students are required to affirm that they will abide by all actions required by the updated Stay Safe Pledge.

Students are also required to abide by all directives from state and local public health authorities and to follow any and all guidelines of the New York State Travel and Quarantine Advisory prior to returning to campus.

Students will participate in an educational program prior to their return to campus focused on health and wellness issues and actions most appropriate during and beyond the COVID-19 health emergency. Further, as a condition of returning to campus, students will be required to affirmatively commit to a social compact statement (that is currently being finalized) that defines expectations related to behaviors and actions appropriate to protect their health and the health of those around them.

First, it is important for all members of our community to understand that enforcing social distancing standards and other measures of prevention is everyone’s responsibility. It is a shared expectation that all students, faculty and staff will not only themselves adhere to the directives and policies in place to safeguard public health—but also remind others to do the same when necessary. As a condition of returning to campus, students will be required to affirmatively commit to the updated Stay Safe Pledge. Students who are identified to have acted with disregard for their health and the health of those around them will be referred to the student judicial process for a violation of the Code of Student Conduct.

Facilities Considerations

The University has already built out the infrastructure to comply with all Centers for Disease Control (CDC)-mandated cleaning and sanitation protocols, including increased cleaning of public spaces, bathrooms, HVAC systems and other components. Specifically, these include enhanced cleaning and sanitation of classrooms, laboratories, studios and performance venues, libraries, residence halls, dining halls, recreation spaces, gathering spaces and other high-traffic areas. The University utilizes disinfectants that have been identified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as appropriate to eliminate the SARS-CoV-2 virus (cause of COVID-19). For information on cleaning and disinfecting efforts in work areas, please visit ehss.syr.edu/about/covid-19-information/work-area-cleaning-and-disinfecting/

In addition to daily cleaning, public restrooms are being monitored multiple times throughout the day to ensure cleanliness. Several times each day, staff disinfect high-touch surfaces such as doorknobs and sink faucets using disinfectants identified by the EPA as qualified for use against the COVID-19 virus. In addition, all electric forced-air hand dryers have been removed from restrooms to avoid spreading airborne particles.

The University closely monitored CDC and other public health guidance to prepare campus buildings for increased indoor ventilation during the COVID-19 health crisis.  Over the summer, building ventilation systems were reviewed to both perform preventative maintenance and verify that systems were operating properly.  Where possible, modifications to ventilation systems were made to follow the most current guidance, including increasing air flow, retrofitting systems with MERV 13 filters, providing UV-C lighting in the air handling  system of health care facilities, operating exhaust fans in all restrooms 24/7, and providing mobile UV-C air cleaning systems in classrooms and labs that have reduced air flow.

For Faculty

Faculty and staff may be tested at the Kimmel Dining Hall Testing Center during operating hours. No appointment is necessary.

Faculty and staff can also find one of the many testing sites in Onondaga County that is most convenient for them by visiting the New York State COVID-19 Test Site Finder, where you can search by zip code. 

The faculty and staff health plan covers COVID-19 testing conducted at other testing sites. 

The most recent update can be found here.