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FAQs: HNU’s Vaccination Requirement and Return to Campus

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Why has HNU decided to require the vaccine?

Holy Names University is committed to protecting the health and well-being of our entire campus community. As we plan for some in-person activity on campus, we have determined that a COVID-19 vaccination requirement will ensure we have the safest environment for our students, faculty, and staff.

COVID-19 vaccines have been shown to significantly reduce the probability of contracting and spreading the virus. They also reduce the chance of serious illness for those who do contract the virus. According to the CDC, the vaccines have received and continue to undergo the most intensive safety monitoring in U.S. history.

Who is required to be vaccinated?

All enrolled students, faculty, and staff must be vaccinated or obtain an exemption. Faculty and staff who work 100% remotely, and who will not visit campus or have any contact with any staff, faculty, or students will be exempt from this policy.

What is the deadline?

HNU will need documentation of vaccination status (including date of first dose if second dose has not yet been obtained) by August 1, 2021.

Individuals who intend to be vaccinated but are unable to obtain an appointment prior to August 1 should notify the University of their status to determine next steps. Contact us at

What are our approved exemptions?

Students, faculty, and staff may apply for an exemption for medical reasons (including pregnancy and breastfeeding) or for deeply held religious beliefs.

Would students living off campus who would be on campus for a limited amount of time be able to get an exemption from the vaccination?

No, this is not an approved exemption.

How do I apply for an exemption?

Students: The exemption form is also available on the Symplicity portal.

Faculty and Staff: Contact HR Director, Pat Barton at

Who reviews the exemption requests?

The COVID Response Team reviews all exemption requests.

How long will it take to find out if my exemption request is approved?

You can expect a response 4-5 business days from when the completed form was submitted.

How do I prove my vaccination status?

Students: You will receive instructions in a separate email regarding how to upload proof of vaccination to HNU’s Residence – Symplicity portal.

Staff and Faculty: You may provide proof of vaccination to the HR Office in person or via email at

What are the consequences for those who have not provided proof of vaccination or attained an accommodation?

Students: Students who do not provide documentation of vaccination or are not approved for an exemption will be prohibited from living on campus, participating in athletics, or attending in person classes, and may have restricted access to campus.

Faculty and Staff: Those whose positions require on-campus work for any time frame must provide proof of vaccination or have an approved accommodation in order to maintain their employment.

What are the approved vaccines?

In the U.S., these are the Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines. For outside of the US, all vaccines on the WHO approved list will be recognized.

Where can I get a vaccine?

Vaccines are now available to Californians 16 years and older. Here are a few resources:

  • Register at to find locations with available appointments.
  • Check directly with your healthcare provider.
  • County public health pages in Alameda County and Contra Costa County list vaccination sites with appointments.
  • HNU’s School of Nursing will offer vaccination appointments this summer. The exact dates will be announced soon via email. Additionally, Johnson and Johnson vaccines are available by appointment, provided there is enough demand. Contact Dr. Pam Stanley for more information at
If I am an international student, do I still need to quarantine upon arrival at HNU?

Students traveling from outside of the U.S. to HNU need to quarantine if they are unvaccinated or if their vaccine is not on the WHO approved list. Residents can coordinate quarantine space and move-in dates with Ang Banez at

I am an International Student currently living outside of the US and have or will receive a COVID Vaccine in my home country. Will this fulfill the COVID Vaccine Requirement?

If you have the opportunity to receive the COVID vaccine outside of the US, we encourage you to do so.  All vaccines on the WHO approved list will be recognized.  Please be sure to have a picture/copy of your vaccine record that includes your name, the vaccine name, and date of administration.

Individuals who have not yet received vaccines or received vaccines not approved by either the FDA or the WHO will need to receive an FDA-approved vaccine upon arrival in the U.S. Click here for information about WHO-approved vaccines. If necessary, you will be able to receive another vaccine when you arrive. During this time, we ask that you abide by CDC and California State guidelines that require those who are not fully vaccinated to wear a face mask and self-quarantine upon arrival.

Do I still need to wear a mask on campus?

HNU will maintain our mask requirement and make the following adjustments on August 1:

Students: Unvaccinated individuals are expected wear a mask on campus.

Faculty and Staff: Cal OSHA has announced that vaccinated workers may go mask-free on the job and unvaccinated workers are required to wear a mask. Note that those vaccinated individuals who would prefer wearing a mask may do so.

What if we have a reaction to the vaccine and get sick? How will HNU support us?

Governor Gavin Newson has signed SB 95 which reinstates and expands the statewide COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave. The leave provisions are retroactive to January 1, 2021 and are set to expire on September 30, 2021.

Reasons for COVID-19 Supplemental Leave

Employees are entitled to 80 hours of paid leave for the following reasons:

  1. The employee is subject to a quarantine or isolation period related to COVID-19.
  2. The employee has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19.
  3. The employee is attending an appointment to receive a vaccine for protection against COVID-19.
  4. The employee is experiencing symptoms related to a COVID-19 vaccine that prevents the employee from being able to work (including remote work).
  5. The employee is experiencing symptoms related to COVID-19 and seeking medical diagnosis.
  6. The employee is caring for a family member who is subject to a quarantine or isolation order or has been advised to self-quarantine.
  7. The employee is caring for a child whose school or place of care is closed or otherwise unavailable for reasons related to COVID-19.

The State of California, Department of Industrial Relations required notice was emailed to all HNU staff and faculty, is posted at HNU campus locations where other employment notices are posted, and available in the ADP Forms Library. Please contact HR if you have questions at

Will there be regular testing for unvaccinated staff, faculty, and students?

There will be regular testing for unvaccinated staff, faculty, and students who have an approved exemption and are living on campus or participating in athletics.

Is there any plan for reopening the campus to guests once faculty and staff return?

The COVID Response Team is currently working on a plan for welcoming guests on campus this fall.

Can we plan on-campus events?

Students, staff, and faculty are welcome to plan campus events. Students can follow the existing protocol for event planning. Staff and faculty members should work with the COVID Response Team when planning all events. We require two weeks’ notice before invitations are sent.

Are there any scenarios—e.g., events, volunteer opportunities—where HNU would require vaccinations for external persons to participate in activities?

The COVID Response Team is currently working on a plan for welcoming guests on campus this fall.

Will the Founders Hall Kitchen be available for use?

The Founders kitchen has been reopened with limited use. We will continue to monitor guidelines regarding the pandemic and will adhere to them accordingly. The Housing & Residence Life Health & Safety Policies will be updated and sent out to all current students within the next couple weeks. Make sure to check your HNU email to stay updated!

Are residents allowed to have external guests in the Residence Halls?

HNU students may enter the halls, but no external guests are allowed.

Will we continue to use to-go boxes in the Public Market?

If the Public Market is open for regular indoor dining, there will be an extra charge for to-go containers.

Will HNU be checking vaccination status at the front gate? Will Envoy clear unvaccinated individuals to access campus?

We will continue to use the Envoy app and perform temperature checks at the front gate. Envoy will ask visitors to indicate whether they’ve been vaccinated. It will remind users that all visitors must: maintain social distancing and regularly wash or sanitize hands. Unvaccinated visitors must wear a mask and accept the potential risk or consequences associated with being unvaccinated.

Will we end in-person classes at Thanksgiving?

No, all classes will continue in the modalities listed in the course schedule through the fall semester.

When can we attend games and cheer on our Hawks?

Spectators will be allowed at home contests this upcoming school year, starting this fall. Visitors would be expected to follow HNU’s health and safety protocols, including the use of Envoy to access campus.