CUNY to Require Proof of Vaccination for Fall '21 In-Person Students; Staff, Faculty Must Submit Vaccine Proof or Negative Test
The FDA granted full approval to the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on August 23, 2021, triggering a 45-day deadline for students visiting campus in Fall ’21 to be fully vaccinated, unless they have been granted a religious exception or medical exemption. Students have until September 27, 2021, to upload proof of vaccination in CUNYfirst, so that it can be verified and approved by the 45-day deadline of Oct. 7. Those who do not, per CUNY policy, will not be given access to campus and will be subject to potential academic withdrawal that could also impact their financial aid and might not be eligible for refunds for the course.
If you have not yet received at least one shot of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, you may receive a single shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine up until Sept. 23 and still meet the Sept. 27 deadline. FIND A LIST OF LOCATIONS FOR THE JOHNSON & JOHNSON VACCINE HERE.
The Lehman College Vax Van returns to Lehman Monday, Sept. 20, offering second and booster doses (for immune compromised individuals) of the Pfizer vaccines. Again, if you have not yet been vaccinated and you are taking an in-person or hybrid class, you cannot start the Pfizer vaccination process at this time and still meet the deadline.
You must upload proof of vaccination to CUNYfirst even if you had previously submitted proof to the College. READ CUNY's FAQs on the vaccine mandate here. Bookmark this page to access the most current info about the vaccine mandate for the Fall 2021 semester.
Are you a student who already has proof of your vaccine? Upload it into CUNYfirst and click on the Vaccination Verification portal. You will need the dates of your two shots for Pfizer and Moderna or the date of your single Johnson & Johnson shot, the location where you got your vaccine, a scan or photograph of your CDC COVID-19 vaccination record card, and if you have the NY State Excelsior Pass app, a scan or photograph of your pass on your mobile device. CUNY is working with NYS Excelsior to link the pass for validation purposes. International students who have received vaccination outside the United States will also be able to upload in CUNYfirst their verification documentation, as long as the vaccine received was approved by the World Health Organization (WHO). For a visual step-by-step guide to submitting information to CUNYfirst, click here. You'll be entered into a giveaway for a $100 cash gift card and other prizes!
STAFF & FACULTY
All employees can start uploading their information today by signing in to CUNYfirst and clicking on the Vaccine Verification link. To complete your vaccination information, you will need the date of your second shot for Pfizer and Moderna or the date of your single shot for Johnson & Johnson; a scan or photograph of your CDC COVID-19 vaccination record card (or an equivalent document if you received your vaccination outside the U.S.), and, if you have the NY State Excelsior Pass app, a scan or photograph of your pass on your mobile device. We are working with NYS Excelsior to link the pass to CUNY for validation purposes.
Please note that employees returning the week of August 16 will need to upload their vaccination verification documents by Friday, August 6, showing they will be fully vaccinated by the 16th. For those starting later than August 16, the deadlines for uploading are 10 days before the first week you are due back. For instance, if you are starting the week of August 23, the deadline is August 13. These voluntary submissions will facilitate your access to a campus or office in August and throughout the fall semester.
If you are not fully vaccinated or do not wish to disclose your status, you will be able to opt out of testing if you have an approved request for a fully remote accommodation. Approved or pending requests need to be indicated on the Vaccine Information Page in CUNYfirst and will be verified by campus Human Resources offices after they are submitted.
For a visual guide to submitting information to CUNYfirst, please visit here. For general information on getting back to working in person, please refer to this FAQ. If you still have questions, please consult your HR office. If you have a technical problem, please contact your campus or office help desk for assistance. All CUNY employees — vaccinated, unvaccinated or undisclosed — are required to follow the University’s Guidelines for CUNY Fall 2021 Reopening Where Not Everyone is Fully Vaccinated.
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Lehman’s Best Answer Your Vax Questions
In this Lehman College discussion and Q&A, we answer questions about the COVID-19 vaccine and put common myths to rest. The expert panel includes Sandra Lindsay '10, a nurse, Lehman alumna, and the first person in the U.S. to take the COVID-19 vaccine in a non-trial setting.
More Vaccine Facts
We know you have questions about everything from the science behind the vaccine to the logistics of getting it. Northwell Health, New York State's largest healthcare provider, offers these and other helpful answers. Visit their website for more info. New Yorkers can call the New York State Vaccination Hotline at 1-833-NYS-4VAX (1-833-697-4829) with any questions.
Because there is currently no cure for COVID-19, prevention is our best strategy. The development of COVID-19 vaccines is an important step in helping minimize the effects of this potentially deadly virus. Vaccines work by training your immune system to recognize and fight off the viruses and bacteria they target. By triggering an immune system response to a virus through a vaccine, your body is better equipped to destroy these disease-causing microbes in the future should you be exposed to COVID-19.
Yes. The FDA is responsible for protecting public health by ensuring the safety and efficacy of drugs, including vaccines. Learn more about the rigorous scientific and regulatory processes in place to facilitate the development and ensure the safety, effectiveness, and quality of the COVID-19 vaccines.
Scientists began work on the COVID-19 vaccine in January 2020. Dedicated vaccine funding helped move vaccine candidates through the pre-clinical/clinical assessments and trials both quickly and thoughtfully. This has enabled researchers to advance into phase 3 clinical trials (testing the vaccine on large groups of people to evaluate safety and effectiveness) in six months instead of the typical two years. The vaccine was mass-produced before the clinical studies were complete to save time.
No. If you start with one manufacturer, you’ll receive the same manufacturer for the second shot.
Because of limited supply and complex logistics, medical professionals will determine the vaccine being administered. The CDC generally advises that you take the vaccine available to you as long as it has been issued EUA or approved by the FDA.
Side effects are a normal sign that your body is building protection. Some people may experience more symptoms with the COVID-19 vaccine compared to other vaccinations, such as the flu shot. The second or booster dose can produce symptoms more severe than experienced with the first dose. The most common side effect is muscle soreness or aching in the arm, which will resolve without treatment. Other common side effects after vaccination may include:
- Swelling or redness where the vaccine was administered
- Muscle and joint achiness elsewhere
- Low-grade fever
These side effects are expected, not serious, and will resolve with time. If you are experiencing symptoms more serious than those described or fever continues for more than two days, contact your doctor or seek care at the nearest emergency department. Make sure you notify the vaccine administrator of these symptoms prior to your second vaccine shot.
No. The COVID-19 vaccines currently in development in the U.S., including the BioNTech/Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, DO NOT use the live virus that causes COVID-19. After receiving the vaccine, you may experience symptoms such as arm pain, low-grade fever, chills, or fatigue. This is normal, and symptoms will resolve without treatment.
It is unknown at this time how long immunity will last; ongoing studies will help determine if repeat vaccination is needed and, if it is, how often we may need a booster. Therefore, after vaccination, you will still need to wear a mask and social distance until further notice. Factors such as how many people get vaccinated and how the virus is spreading in communities will help determine when we may be able to stop taking these extra precautions.
Studies have not yet been done to determine if the COVID-19 vaccine is safe for a pregnant woman or her fetus. However, the vaccine is thought to be unlikely to pose a risk, according to experts from the American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists and the CDC and the independent Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). That’s because the vaccine does not contain the live virus that causes COVID-19, so it cannot give someone COVID-19, and the vaccine does not interact with or alter human DNA in the recipient.
Yes. You can get the COVID-19 vaccine if you’ve had the virus. We do not currently have enough information to determine if or for how long after infection someone is protected (through natural immunity) from getting COVID-19 again. Therefore, the vaccine may offer additional protection.
Please note, if you’ve had COVID-19 monoclonal antibody therapy or COVID-19 convalescent plasma, you should not receive the COVID-19 vaccine until at least 91 days following treatment.