What Pennsylvania Colleges Require the COVID-19 Vaccine?

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Updated July 16, 2021

As fall approaches, more colleges across the United States are requiring students to get their Covid vaccine shots before Fall 2021 semester begins.

On April 29th, American College Health Association recommends COVID-19 vaccination requirements for all on-campus college students in Fall 2021. In June, more colleges in Pennsylvania has been added to over 30 colleges and universities to require COVID vaccination, unless opting for exemption.

UPenn and Drexel became the first two colleges in Pennsylvania to require on-campus students to be vaccinated against COVID-19. 

We at CNS Occupational Medicine will update this list of Pennsylvania colleges and universities over the next several months.

Allegheny College

We are writing to announce that Allegheny College will require all students to receive the COVID-19 vaccine prior to returning to campus for the fall semester. This is essential for us to provide the full in-person experience for fall that we announced several weeks ago. Our requirement mirrors policies at many other academic institutions, including Bucknell University, DePauw University, Dickinson College, Kalamazoo College, Kenyon College, and more.

Everyone who lives, learns, and works at Allegheny College is part of an interconnected environment. Being vaccinated not only protects you, but it also protects the Allegheny community of which you are an integral part. If you do not receive the vaccine and then, in turn, contract the virus, anyone who comes into contact with you is at risk of contracting COVID-19, including students, faculty, employees, and healthcare workers.

Bryn Mawr College / Haverford College

As infectious disease and public health experts continue to advise, mass vaccination offers the surest path to community health and to the prospect of increased in-person instruction, activities, and gatherings in the fall.

As a result, Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges will require all students, whether residential or commuting, to be vaccinated against COVID-19 for the 2021-2022 academic year.  

Additional details about this requirement – including medical and religious exemptions, opportunities to acquire a vaccine, and a timeline for any forthcoming decisions regarding vaccine requirements for faculty and staff – will be provided separately by Bryn Mawr and Haverford to their respective communities and incoming students in the near future.

Bucknell University

Bucknell is requiring students to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Aug. 1, 2021, prior to their arrival on campus for the fall 2021 semester.

This policy will allow a safe return to in-person instruction and the vibrant, residential and interactive community that creates the full Bucknell experience. The vaccine offers the best opportunity for students to be able to gather safely beginning in the fall, with reduced need for sequential testing, quarantine and isolation.

Cabrini University

Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon University will require all enrolled students to be vaccinated for COVID-19, effective this fall semester. This policy will apply to all undergraduate and graduate students in U.S.-based programs.

Chatham University

Given the success of the COVID-19 vaccines in helping turn the tide of this pandemic here in the U.S., Chatham has made the decision to require COVID-19 vaccinations for all students participating in face-to-face classes or campus activities and for all faculty and staff for the 2021-2022 academic term. Those with a valid medical, religious or other reason consistent with federal and state law will be able to apply for an exemption.

Dickinson College

We expect a full return to campus in the fall. We will require COVID-19 vaccinations for all students living on campus, unless a student seeks a religious or medical exception. Vaccinated students will not need to participate in regular surveillance testing this fall.

Drexel University

Drexel full-time and part-time undergraduate and graduate students must be vaccinated by Fall semester with limited medical and religious exceptions.

The college will also have two vaccination clinics on campus and students can monitor their health through the Drexel Health Checker app.

Duquesne University

Beginning with the fall 2021 semester, the COVID-19 vaccine will be required for all Duquesne University students intending to be present in person for classes and all other campus activities. This is consistent with existing University policies that require students to be vaccinated for a wide range of diseases, including measles, mumps, rubella and tetanus.

Franklin & Marshall College

After careful consideration, and in accordance with the recommendation of the American College Health Association (ACHA), F&M will require all enrolled students present on campus to receive, and to provide proof of having received, a COVID-19 vaccine authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Gettysburg College

The surest way to create a more traditional learning environment on campus in the 2021-22 academic year is to ensure Gettysburg College students are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. President Bob Iuliano announces the College’s decision to require every Gettysburg student to be vaccinated, unless they have a medical or religious exemption.

Gwynedd Mercy University

All students planning to be on campus in the fall will need to show proof of their completed vaccination (e.g. both doses of Pfizer or Moderna, or the single dose of Johnson and Johnson) no later than August 12, 2021 or two weeks prior to their first day on campus, whichever comes first.

Immaculata University

Juniata College

Lafayette College

We know that the best path to the activities you cherish as a member of a close-knit academic community relies on widespread vaccination for COVID-19. We are pleased that the majority of students on campus have already been able to secure vaccines, with many more planning to do so in the coming months. Therefore, we are adding the COVID-19 vaccine to the list of required vaccines for students. By Aug. 1, all students enrolled at Lafayette must provide proof of vaccination to Bailey Health Center.

Lehigh University

Lehigh said all undergraduates living in university housing after June 1 will be required to be vaccinated. That rule will be extended to graduate students living in campus housing starting on July 1.

The university plans to have all but a small number of classes offered in-person in the fall with all residence halls and Greek housing at normal capacity.

Mercyhurst University

In light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the research supporting COVID-19 vaccine efficacy, and the widespread availability of COVID-19 vaccines in the U.S., Mercyhurst University has revised its vaccination policy ahead of the Fall 2021 semester. In addition to the already-required vaccines, Mercyhurst requires all students taking courses on campus and all university employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Aug. 1, 2021. Individuals are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after their second dose of a two-dose series (e.g., Pfizer or Moderna) or two weeks after a single-dose vaccine (e.g., Johnson & Johnson). Students and employees must upload their COVID-19 vaccination documentation, if they haven’t already.

Muhlenberg College

There is an abundance of information in support of vaccine effectiveness and safety, vaccine supply and availability and a clear sense of the critical importance of the vaccine in congregant living settings. Therefore, Muhlenberg College will require all students to be vaccinated for the 2021-2022 academic year. We strongly encourage faculty and staff to be vaccinated as well and have hosted onsite vaccine clinics that drew strong participation from our community.

Neumann University

Point Park University

Saint Joseph’s University

The University will require all students, faculty, and staff to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before participating in any on-campus activity related to the 2021-22 academic year. We will be able to return classrooms, meeting and event spaces, dining and residence halls, study areas, recreation facilities, liturgical services, and more to their full capacity. The full slate and range of student and service activities can and will be offered. Most importantly, we will do our part to reduce risks of serious illness due to COVID-19 among members of our community.

Susquehanna University

Swarthmore College

After consulting with medical and public health experts, we have decided that we will require all students to receive a COVID-19 vaccine for the 2021–22 academic year. As you know, we already require students to receive several vaccines for illnesses such as mumps, measles, and meningitis. Adding the COVID-19 vaccine to that list allows us to return to an in-person, residential educational experience while prioritizing your health and safety. Given that vaccines have become widely available across the country and in many parts of the world, we expect that most students will be able to secure a vaccine prior to returning to campus. We will, however, provide vaccines in the fall for any student who is unable to receive one elsewhere.

Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology

Thaddeus Stevens College is planning to open in fall 2021 with expanded on-campus learning. While general education classes will remain online, all labs and shops are planned to be held in-person on campus. In addition, student housing will expand to two students per dorm room. Extracurricular activities and athletics are expected to resume. We have every reason to believe that fall 2021 will feel more like a traditional semester than what we have experienced the past year and a half.

Our plan for fall is based on a Health and Safety Plan that prioritizes the health and safety of our entire campus community.  As such, Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology will require all students enrolled for fall 2021 semester to receive a COVID-19 vaccine authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Students will need to provide proof of having received their final dose of the vaccine (second dose for the two-dose Moderna or Pfizer BioN-Tech vaccine or one dose for the J&J/Janssen single-dose vaccine) by August 6, 2021. As soon as students are fully vaccinated, they must submit a scanned copy of their completed vaccination card to Thaddeus Stevens College Health Services.

Thomas Jefferson University

In our continuing commitment to the health and safety of our University community, Thomas Jefferson University has made the decision to require that students receive a U.S. FDA authorized COVID-19 vaccine before returning to campus for the fall 2021 semester.

Students planning to be on campus in any capacity during the 2021-22 academic year must produce their COVID-19 vaccination card with proof that they have received their final dose of a U.S. FDA authorized vaccine no later than August 1. We will provide more details on how to upload your documentation to the Jefferson system in the coming weeks.

University of Pennsylvania

UPenn school officials agreed that mass vaccination is central to their commitment to having a safe campus environment but added that students can decline the vaccination for medical or religious reasons. 

According to the college’s guidelines, UPenn students are expected to receive their second shot of the vaccine two weeks prior to returning to campus and the college plans to provide vaccination clinics for students who have not received their shots prior to the start of fall semester.

If students get their shots on-campus, they will be required to quarantine for two weeks after receiving their first dose.

Additionally, UPenn will maintain its on-campus mask mandate despite the widespread vaccinations.

University of Scranton

Grounded in our Catholic and Jesuit mission, and in a commitment to community that defines and distinguishes us, our Royals Safe Together plan begins by acknowledging that we have a shared responsibility to keep each other safe. Vaccination against the SARS-CoV-2 virus is now the best way to ensure the health and safety of our communities.

All students attending in-person classes or accessing campus for other reasons must be fully vaccinated by August 27, 2021.

University of the Sciences

USciences is committed to the health and safety of the University community. The University has been preparing for the fall semester since late spring, including updating plans based upon CDC, state, and city guidelines.

Ursinus College

Villanova University

All Villanova students, faculty and staff are required to be fully vaccinated by August 1, 2021. Exceptions will be made for medical or religious reasons, and provisions will be made for international students to receive the vaccine once on-campus if they are unable to meet this requirement in advance of the fall semester.

Washington & Jefferson College

Based on CDC guidance, and advice of our Clinical Advisory Panel, the COVID-19 vaccination requirement has been added to our existing list of immunization requirements outlined on page 35 of the W&J Student Handbook. As with all required vaccinations, W&J will honor immunization exemptions for medical, religious and philosophical reasons. This exemption form can be found at MyW&J (Student Life). No student receiving an exemption will be prevented from fully participating in courses, campus activities or athletics. Specific provisions for students who choose not to be vaccinated will be made available on July 15.

Widener University

For the fall 2021 semester, Widener is enacting a COVID-19 vaccination policy. Students, staff, and faculty who will be present for in-person classes and operations must be fully vaccinated by August 2.

Williamson College of the Trades

Our goal for the upcoming fall 2021 term remains constant, to safely provide the Williamson educational experience to each student. With the safety and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccines now well-established, and with the importance of mass vaccination so central to our commitment to having a safe campus environment, the College has decided that a COVID vaccination will be required for all enrolled students this fall. This requirement will operate similarly to our existing requirements for other immunizations.

On-campus resident faculty and staff will be similarly required to be COVID vaccinated prior to the start of the fall 2021 term. The College strongly encourages all remaining off-campus residency faculty and staff to become vaccinated for your safety and for the long-term safety of our community.

Medical and religious exemptions may be granted based on the specific circumstances of each request, but our expectation is that the student population on campus will overwhelmingly consist of vaccinated individuals. 

Need to get vaccinated before school starts? We have vaccination sites nearby!

Anyone 18 years of age or older is now eligible. Appointments are required. Administering the vaccine will take 20-30 minutes relative to the health conditions of the recipient.

There are no out-of-pocket costs to be paid by recipients of the vaccine. Insurance or Medicare will be billed the administration fees, if applicable. If you do not have insurance, just fill out the consent form and check the box that says uninsured.

CNS Occupational Medicine can help you receive a Moderna vaccine:


For more information, contact us at 800.551.9816 or info@cnsoccmed.com.