Vaccination Policy Information
Updated on January 20, 2023
Who is required to be vaccinated for the 2022–2023 academic year?
The College requires all members of the campus community—students, faculty, and staff (including casual staff)—to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19. In addition to providing protection against serious illness, hospitalization, and worse, vaccinations continue to play a role in reducing transmission of the virus.
What does it mean to be “fully” vaccinated?
The College considers an individual to be fully vaccinated after having completed their primary series of either the two-dose Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or a single dose of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.
Is the College requiring eligible faculty and staff to receive the bivalent booster?
We are not requiring eligible faculty and staff to receive the bivalent booster, but we strongly encourage each member of our community to get this new booster as soon as they can.
Are there exemptions from this requirement?
Students may request an exemption from the vaccination requirement for medical reasons associated with a health condition. Faculty and staff may request an exemption for medical reasons associated with a health condition or for sincerely held religious beliefs. There is no religious exemption from vaccination available to students.
Which COVID-19 vaccines qualify to meet the vaccination requirement?
In order to meet the vaccination requirement, you must receive a COVID-19 vaccination authorized by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and/or the World Health Organization’s Emergency Use Listing (WHO/EUL).
- Pfizer–BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine
- Moderna COVID-19 vaccine
- Johnson & Johnson's Janssen COVID-19 vaccine
- AstraZeneca/Oxford (SK-BIO and Covashield)
- Sinopharm (BBIBP-CorV)
- Sinovac (CoronaVac)
Do I need to be vaccinated if I have already had COVID-19?
Yes. Anyone who previously had COVID-19 is still required to be vaccinated. However, the CDC recommends that if you were treated for COVID-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma you should wait ninety (90) days before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Employees unable to meet Bowdoin’s vaccine requirement for this reason should contact Mary Cote in HR. Students unable to meet Bowdoin’s vaccine deadline for this reason should contact the health center.
Do visitors to campus have to prove they have been vaccinated?
Campus grounds, buildings, and dining halls are open to visitors, regardless of their vaccination status. Full-capacity attendance is permitted at indoor athletic competitions, museums, and events. The College does not currently check for vaccination status.
Are there any student exemptions from the vaccination requirement?
Students may request exemptions from the vaccination requirement for medical reasons associated with a health condition. There is no religious exemption from vaccination available to students.
If I have an exemption and am not vaccinated, what can/can’t I participate in?
Students granted a medical exemption are free to participate in all campus activities and are not required to be masked in indoor spaces.
What happens if a student refuses to be vaccinated?
We are requiring that all Bowdoin students be fully vaccinated to protect the health and safety of the campus and the Brunswick community. Students who are not vaccinated and have not been approved for a medical exemption are not able to enroll at the College.
Are there any faculty and staff exemptions from the vaccination requirement?
Faculty and staff may request exemptions from the vaccination requirement for medical reasons associated with a health condition or for sincerely held religious beliefs.
How do I apply for an exemption from the vaccination requirement?
- Medical: Faculty and staff requesting a medical exemption must present documentation from their health care provider of a medical condition that is in conflict with the vaccination requirement to Mary Cote in HR (email@example.com, phone: 207-725-3033)
- Religious: Faculty and staff requesting an exemption based on a sincerely held religious belief that precludes them from receiving the vaccine must submit a request in writing for this exemption to Mary Cote in HR (email: firstname.lastname@example.org, phone: 207-725-3033). Note: No exemptions will be made based on an employee’s philosophical or political objection to receiving the vaccination.
If I am approved for an exemption from the vaccination requirement, am I expected to work on campus?
Yes. Faculty and staff granted medical or religious exemptions will be expected to work on campus and may be required to follow additional health and safety protocols depending on COVID-19 prevalence on campus and/or updated CDC guidance. HR will engage with employees granted exemptions to determine what reasonable workplace accommodations may be appropriate and to provide updates to the accommodations as needed. At this time no restrictions are required for those with approved vaccine exemptions. Masking is not required on campus, except for those individuals experiencing symptoms, identified as a close contact to a COVID-19 positive individual, or returning to work on campus from isolation after testing positive for COVID-19.
Do faculty who are on a sabbatical need to be fully vaccinated?
Generally, no. But if the faculty member plans to be inside campus buildings while on sabbatical, then they must be fully vaccinated.