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Student vaccination against COVID-19

CIRT Update

Published April 21, 2021

Dear students, staff and faculty,

Since March of last year, members of the Smith community have acted to protect one another, minimize the spread of COVID-19, and continue the teaching and learning that is at the core of our mission. Your commitment to our Culture of Care has helped to ensure a safe and healthy campus environment—thank you. Today, I announce two important developments regarding the COVID-19 vaccine: 

  1. Smith has secured sufficient doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to vaccinate all undergraduate and graduate students participating in our COVID-19 screening program. By offering on-campus vaccine clinics on April 24 and April 25, we are making it possible for students who want to get the vaccine on campus to be fully vaccinated before they leave for summer break. Details about how to schedule an appointment will be sent via separate email to those who are eligible. 

  1. Smith College will require all undergraduate and graduate students to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to returning to campus for the fall 2021 semester. Students should verify that they are fully vaccinated prior to their fall 2021 arrival by uploading vaccine records to the Schacht Center’s confidential patient portal. Instructions can be found on the center’s website. As with other required vaccinations, requests for medical or religious exemptions will be reviewed and accommodated on a case-by-case basis. The college will help international students or others who cannot get a U.S.-approved full vaccination prior to arrival to meet this requirement. We will have additional details about the overall return-to-campus process, including the vaccination requirement, by mid-June. 

At this time, on-campus vaccines will be available only to students participating in the COVID-19 screening program. We are working to secure additional doses in the hope that we can vaccinate more members of our community in the future. For now, we are prioritizing the need to vaccinate our students before they travel home. By providing an on-campus option, Smith will reduce the burden on local vaccination clinics and give students the opportunity to schedule and receive both vaccine doses prior to the college’s move-out date. We continue to encourage all members of our community to get vaccinated as soon as they are able. 

While this past year has been stressful, it has also proven how undaunted we are in the face of challenges, and how resilient we can be. Thank you for your ongoing commitment to our community.


Kathleen McCartney