Our commitment to the health and well-being of our campus community
As we begin our fourth academic year affected by the Sars-cov-2 virus (COVID-19) The College of Wooster is continuing to take a layered approach (i.e. vaccination, masking, testing, and isolation) to decrease community spread and reduce the strain on the campus community. This approach relies on students, staff, and faculty to be active and crucial participants in keeping the community healthy. As such, we offer the following guidance for all students, employees, and visitors of The College of Wooster.
Our plans for campus continue to be informed by expert guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, experts at Ohio State’s Wexner Medical Center, and input from state health officials and the local Wayne County Health Department. As we have done since the start of the pandemic, we will continue to monitor overall rates of infection on campus, infection and hospitalization rates in Wayne County, the state, and nationally, and we will continue to update our COVID-19 dashboard Monday afternoons, and adjust guidelines as needed.
The College will continue to maintain a mask optional policy for all faculty, staff, students, and visitors, with a few notable exceptions:
- Masks absolutely must be worn by anyone who is COVID-19 positive or has symptoms of COVID-19, until the required isolation protocol has been completed. Check wooster.edu/guide for what to do if you feel ill. Masks should be worn until symptoms have passed.
- Faculty and staff may continue to require masks in their classrooms and personal offices.
Masks must be worn over the nose. Click here to make sure you are wearing your mask properly.
Because Wooster is a fully residential campus, where all students live together in communal residence halls and houses, all students are required to receive COVID-19 vaccination.
Types of COVID-19 Vaccines Currently Available
Vaccines authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) currently include:
- Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines which are mRNA vaccines.
- Novavax COVID-19 vaccine which is a protein subunit vaccine.
The CDC recommends that everyone aged 6 years and older should get 1 updated Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to be up to date. The updated vaccines are called “updated” because they protect against both the original virus that causes COVID-19 and the Omicron variant BA.4 and BA.5. Two COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers, Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna, have developed updated COVID-19 vaccines and have received approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), demonstrating that the benefits of the vaccines to prevent death, serious illness, and hospitalization from SARS-CoV-2 infection are greater than their risks, and that the vaccines can be manufactured reliably, safely and with consistent quality.
Visit the CDC website to learn more about staying up to date and the recommended vaccines.
As of April 18, 2023, the original Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines are no longer authorized for use by the FDA in the United States. Previous COVID-19 vaccines are called “original” because they were designed to protect against the original virus that causes COVID-19.
All current and incoming students are required to report their vaccination status using the confidential Student Wellness Portal. If you haven’t visited this portal to update your vaccination status, please do so no later than Aug. 1. Students also should have their CDC or WHO vaccination card with them on campus.
Students who cannot be vaccinated for COVID-19 because of a medical reason or sincerely held religious belief, practice, or observance may request an exemption through the College. Exemptions or reasonable accommodations are not guaranteed. Students wishing to request a vaccine exemption should complete the vaccine exemption form no later than two weeks prior to the start of the classes.
The College continues to strongly encourage all employees and contracted employees to stay up to date with their COVID-19 vaccination as recommended by the CDC to help protect the campus against new variants of the coronavirus.
As of May 6, 2023, J&J/Janssen COVID-19 vaccine has expired and is no longer available for use in the United States.
Our current student vaccination rate is 98 percent.
Learn more about our vaccination protocols.
The Longbrake Student Wellness Center has a supply of masks as well as home tests available for students who need them. Nursing staff also are trained to administer tests when needed. Follow these steps if you believe you were exposed to COVID-19. Learn more about our Testing protocols.
The College of Wooster has moved to a practice of isolating in place for all COVID-19 positive students. Click here for more information on isolation protocols.