WCSU Covid-19 Information Fall 2021

Reopening WCSU

Student Vaccination Requirement FAQs

Reminder to students: Your official vaccination record must be uploaded to https://wcsu.medicatconnect.com/. For the many of you who have already submitted your records, thank you.

If you have trouble submitting your proof of COVID vaccination, please contact the IT&I Service Desk at 203-837-8467 or at requestIT@wcsu.edu

Testing for unvaccinated students takes place at the Hall of Fame of the O’Neill Center on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from noon to 6 p.m. For more information about testing and other aspects of the university’s Covid-19 response, please read the FAQs below.

Thank you, in advance for your assistance. Your timely response is much appreciated.

To request a medical exemption to vaccination, fill out the form here.

If you wish to request a non-medical exemption, visit here.

Yes. All undergraduate and graduate students who come to campus — both residential and commuter students — must be fully vaccinated against the Covid-19 virus. Following the advice of the CSCU Board of Regents and upon thorough review of the information provided by the Center for Disease Control, the Connecticut Department of Public Health, and the Connecticut Reopens Guidelines, we believe that requiring vaccinations will provide the best chance to operate normally in the fall. 

Yes, there are exemptions for medical and non-medical reasons. The medical exemption form is hereSubmit this record to healthservices@wcsu.eduThe non-medical form is here. All requests for exemptions will be considered in a timely manner. 

  • For medical exemptions, you will be notified by health services when we receive the signed document from your physician. 
  • For non-medical exemptions, your request will be evaluated by the University’s Covid-19 Team  and you will be contacted by the Office of Student Affairs via email within two business days of your application.  

Yes. We require documentation of vaccination or an approved exemption for all students regardless of learning modality. This is because a) schedules change and b) online students may also wish to participate in campus activities, commencement, or use library and/or recreational facilities.  

Covid-19 testing is being held at the Hall of Fame of the O’Neill Center on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from noon to 6 p.m. for weekly testing. Results are automatically recorded at the Health Services office. Note that students who get their tests off-campus must submit the results to the WCSU Health Service Patient Portal at https://wcsu.medicatconnect.com/ by the end of the day each Friday. Instructions for uploading results are below:
  1. Go to the WCSU Health Services Patient Portal (https://wcsu.medicatconnect.com/)
  2. Sign in using your WCSU ID (without the @wcsu.edu) and password
  3. Click Uploads:
  4. Select COVID-19 Test Results as the type of document you are loading
  5. Follow the detailed instructions on the Upload screen if you need help.
  6. Click Upload to submit your COVID-19 PCR test results.

Vaccination is the only way to move toward normal life on campus. Although masking, social distancing and weekly testing was helpful, students were subjected to multiple quarantines as we managed the spread of the virus in our campus community. Our goal is to avoid these disruptions and return to a normal, mask-free, educational environment as soon as possible.   

In addition, the most recent data on severe cases of COVID-19 (Delta Variant) shows that it is nearly exclusively hitting the unvaccinated. Because older adults were early in the vaccination cycle, the hospitalizations are now more commonly among young adults. We hope that with the vaccine mandate in Connecticut we will help to stop the spread of this variant. 

We believe, as do state health officials, that a vaccination rate of 80% to 90% on campus will minimize the spread among students, faculty and staff and keep those who cannot receive the vaccine as safe as possible. 

Students who are granted an exemption to the mandate will have to wear masks on campus, socially distance themselves, and report the results of weekly testing. They may not be allowed to attend large events on campus. We have opted for weekly testing because of the specific conditions of higher education. Unlike public spaces in which vaccinated and non-vaccinated people mix (grocery stores, for example), classrooms have students together for more than an hour, sitting in relatively close proximity to each other. The spread of COVID-19 generally takes several minutes of sustained exposure. With variants spreading, and a keen desire to operate normally while protecting our community, we feel that frequent testing is the only option until we reach nearly universal vaccination status. 

If you do not submit proof of vaccination and have not received an approved exemption, you will not be permitted to move into the residence halls, and you may be dropped from your fall classes.  

Once you are vaccinated, the Vaccine Administration Management System (VAMS), will document your status. Your record is easily downloaded in pdf format from VAMS.  Simply upload that pdf to https://wcsu.medicatconnect.com/, which is the same place your vaccinations for childhood diseases are stored. If you have difficulty with this process, please send an email for assistance to healthservices@wcsu.edu. 

Yes, students at Eastern, Central and Southern Connecticut State Universities and the 12 community colleges all must also follow the mandate. In addition, UConn, Yale, CUNY, SUNY and nearly every private university in the Northeast has mandated vaccines for students, as have Connecticut public school districts and hospitals in the state. Here are the FAQs from the CSCU Board of Regents, which approved the mandate on June 24. 

HOUSING AND RESIDENCE LIFE 

Will residence halls have any extra rules? 

Yes. We are returning to near-normal in the residence halls but some precautions will remain. 

  1. Students who live on campus must be vaccinated (or receive an exemption – medical or other).  Residential students with an approved medical or other exemption will need to: 
    1. Receive a PCR test within seven days before their arrival on campus 
    2. Be tested again upon their arrival on campus 
    3. Quarantine in Fairfield Hall until the results of their on-campus test have been returned.  If their results are negative, they may move into their assigned room.  If their results are positive, they will move to the isolation area in Fairfield Hall, or isolate at home, for 10 days.  At the end of the isolation period, they may move into their assigned room. 
  2. Students without a vaccination or an approved exemption will not be permitted to move into the residence halls.
  3. Masks – Vaccinated residential students will not need to wear masks in the residence halls. If residential students are unvaccinated, they must wear a mask in all public areas of the residence halls.  Masks are not required to be worn within the rooms, suites, or apartments. 
  4. Visitation will return to “normal,” with each residential student being permitted up to two guests at a time.  ALL guests must wear masks while in the building, including in individual rooms, and regardless of their vaccination status.  Visitation policies will revert to pre-COVID-19 sign-in and escort regulations.  
  5. Testing – Unvaccinated residential students with approved exemptions will be required to be tested weekly.  Vaccinated students will not need to be tested unless they become symptomatic for COVID-19 
  6. NOTE ON MOVE-IN DAY: There will be no early drop-off for belongings this year, but all students will be assigned specific move-in times. First-year and transfer students will move in on Aug. 22. Returning students will move in on Aug. 25.