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Information for Students Living on Campus Fall 2021

Vaccination and Quarantine | TestingHealth and Wellness | Access to Services and Facilities | Move-in and Orientation

Vaccination and Quarantine 

Will the College require students to be vaccinated against COVID-19? 

Yes, the College is requiring all students to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by August 1, 2021.  Consistent with CDC guidelines, the College will accept vaccination with the following FDA or World Health Organization (WHO) approved COVID-19 vaccines: Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca-CoviShield, Sinopharm-VeroCell, and Sinovac-Coronavac.  

Why is Swarthmore requiring the COVID-19 vaccine for all students?

Swarthmore requires students to be vaccinated by August 1, 2021 to allow for a safe return to in-person instruction.The vaccine offers the best opportunity for students to be able to gather safely with reduced need for testing, quarantine, and isolation. 

Will the College offer the COVID-19 vaccine?

Yes. The College will partner with a local pharmacy to provide an FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccine to enrolled students who are unable to receive one prior to arrival. If you are unable to be vaccinated with an FDA or WHO approved COVID-19 vaccine prior to August 1, 2021, email canders4@swarthmore

What if I already received one of the WHO approved vaccines, but would like to receive an FDA approved vaccine upon arrival?

Per CDC recommendations, people who have received all recommended doses of a COVID-19 vaccine listed for emergency use by the WHO do not need any additional doses with an FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine. People who have not received all the recommended doses of a COVID-19 vaccine listed for emergency use by the WHO may be offered a complete FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine series. It is necessary to wait at least 28 days after the last dose of the non-FDA-authorized vaccine before an FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine may be administered.

How do I submit my vaccine documentation?

Once you are vaccinated, you must upload your COVID-19 vaccine documentation and dates of vaccination to the student health portal by August 1, 2021 for verification by Student Health Center staff. The student health portal can be accessed through MySwarthmore

How do I apply for an exemption to the COVID-19 vaccine requirement?

Requests for exemption from the COVID-19 immunization requirement may be submitted to and reviewed by Swarthmore Student Health in the same way that all other requests for exemption from other immunization requirements are managed at Swarthmore. Students seeking a medical or religious exemption must complete this waiver form stating their understanding of risks and benefits of getting the vaccine and possible plans should an outbreak of a vaccine-preventable disease occur on campus. 

If I get the COVID-19 vaccine upon arrival, approximately how long will it take for me to be able to get both doses? 

This depends on what vaccine we have access to at that specific time. The dosing interval for each vaccine varies and this determines how long it will take to be considered “fully vaccinated.”  

What happens if I get one dose out of two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine? 

If the vaccine you received is FDA authorized, the Student Health Center can assist you with scheduling a vaccination appointment at a clinic near campus to complete your COVID-19 vaccine series. If the vaccine you received was a WHO-approved vaccine, per CDC recommendations, you may be offered a complete FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine series after waiting at least 28 days after your last dose of the non-FDA authorized vaccine before administering an FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine. 

If I’m missing a required vaccine, not the COVID-19 vaccine, what should I do?

Staff from the Student Health Center will review medical records for all incoming students over the summer. If you are missing vaccination, a provider from the Health Center will notify you over the summer via the student health portal. Upon arrival on campus, during the orientation and move-in period, the Health Center will provide necessary vaccinations in order for students to be fully compliant. Details surrounding the COVID-19 vaccination process are still being confirmed and will be shared with students as soon as they are available. 

If I am not fully vaccinated prior to arrival on campus, will I have to quarantine?

No. Unvaccinated or partially vaccinated students will not be required to complete strict quarantine, unless they receive a positive test result.  

If I am not fully vaccinated prior to arrival on campus, will I be able to participate in orientation? In classes?

Yes, you will be able to participate in orientation and your classes. 

Can I leave my isolation/quarantine room for just a little bit?

We appreciate how hard it is to stay in one place. Currently it is not logistically possible to allow outdoor access while minimizing the risk to the community. Alternative methods of coping (visualization, sitting by a window, meditation, in room exercises) are strongly encouraged. Counseling services are available to all students while in Q&I housing. 

Is there a Student Garnet Pledge for the 2021-2022 academic year?

Yes, you can find the student Garnet Pledge for the 2021-2022 academic year here.


Will there be testing upon arrival? During the semester?

All students, regardless of vaccination status, will be required to be tested for COVID-19 upon their arrival to campus. Beginning Sept. 7, required surveillance testing will continue on a weekly basis for unvaccinated or partially vaccinated students, and on a biweekly basis for vaccianted students, until further notice. Detailed information about testing requirements can be found here.

What do I do if I get a positive test result in the middle of the night?

Please see the Worth Health Center webpage “So you received a positive test result. Now what?”

Can I get an antibody test? 

Antibody test is used to see if past infection. Utility of this test is limited. It is still unknown if a positive antibody test will confer immunity and for how long. If you have further questions regarding antibody tests, please discuss with one of our providers at an appointment. 

Can I get a rapid antigen test?

Rapid antigen tests are indicated to detect an active COVID-19 infection similar to PCR tests. Use of rapid antigen testing vs PCR testing will depend on the clinical situation, availability and at the discretion of Worth Health Center providers. 

Health and Wellness

Who do I call if I have a question about COVID-19 symptoms or a possible exposure to someone infected? 

The symptoms tracker you complete daily is one way to communicate with the medical staff your concerns. These are checked several times a day. You are welcome and encouraged to call the Health Center when it is open. If you have concerns during a time when the Health Center is not open, please see the COVID-19 and Health Resources and Phone Numbers page.

Will I have to complete symptom tracking through the student health portal?

No. While we expect you to monitor any symptoms you may have during the weeks prior to your arrival and daily while on campus, we are not requiring you to document this. However, if you develop symptoms, you are required to inform the Student Health Center for evaluation. 

If I’m identified as a close contact, will I have to quarantine?

If you are fully vaccinated and asymptomatic, you will not have to quarantine. If you are partially vaccinated or unvaccinated, you will be required to quarantine in delegated housing and adhere to a health support plan developed for you by the staff at the Student Health Center. 

If I’m approved for an exemption from the COVID-19 vaccine, what health and safety protocols will I have to follow?

If you are exempt from the COVID-19 vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons, you will be required to participate in the student testing program, wear a mask, and quarantine if you are identified as a close contact to someone who tests positive for COVID-19. 

Access to Services and Facilities

What access will enrolled students who live off-campus have to campus services and facilities?

Off campus, enrolled students will have regular access to campus and use of facilities such as the Libraries, Matchbox, and Sharples.


Move-In and Orientation

You can find information about move-in and new student orientation on the Living at Swarthmore website.