COVID-19 Vaccination Mandate, Mask and Testing Requirements for Fall

Posted Aug. 18, 2021
Updated Aug. 23, 2021


With the news of the FDA’s approval of the Pfizer vaccine on Aug. 23 and the beginning of the semester approaching on Aug. 30, please be aware of these important updated health and safety policies for those who plan to be on campus at Hudson Valley Community College this semester.

VACCINATION MANDATE: All SUNY colleges, including Hudson Valley, must comply with New York State’s mandate for students to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 upon FDA approval of a vaccine for non-emergency use. This policy is now in effect, and all students will need to be vaccinated in order to study on campus or make use of campus offices and services this fall. Please read the important details below:

  • To provide flexibility while keeping consistent with current immunization requirements, Hudson Valley students taking on-campus classes or using on-campus services will have up to 30 calendar days to submit proof of receiving either a single dose COVID-19 vaccine or beginning a two-dose vaccine series once the FDA approves a vaccine. This means that you must have received, and submitted proof of receiving, at least one vaccine dose by Sept. 30, 2021 to remain eligible to participate in on-campus classes or activities this fall.
    • If you choose not to get vaccinated within this timeframe:
      • you will not be able to come to campus for any reason, including attending classes and/or accessing any on-campus service or resource.
      • you will be administratively withdrawn from your on-campus classes.
  • We strongly encourage you to get vaccinated now to avoid any interruption to your studies this fall. Vaccines are offered at most pharmacies, doctor’s offices, and New York State-run vaccination sites. You can find a location near you at
  • Please note that although Pfizer is currently the only vaccine that has received FDA approval for non-emergency use, it is not required that you receive the Pfizer vaccine specifically. You may choose whether to receive the Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
  • The Rensselaer County Department of Health will offer COVID-19 vaccinations (Johnson & Johnson, Moderna and Pfizer) on campus from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 30. The county’s mobile vaccination bus will be located near the Veterans Memorial and flag pole. Additional dates will be scheduled during the fall semester.
  • All students studying on campus who have not submitted proof of full vaccination prior to the start of fall classes on campus will be required to submit proof of a negative COVID-19 test to college Health Services within five days before their return to campus, and to participate in daily health screening and mandatory weekly pooled surveillance testing.
    NOTE: People are considered fully vaccinated:
    • two weeks after receiving the second dose in a two dose COVID-19 vaccine series or
    • two weeks after receiving a single dose COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Student-athletes (except those competing on eSports teams) must be fully vaccinated in order to participate in practices, competition and team meetings during the 2021-22 academic year. Please contact team coaches for additional information or questions.

Already vaccinated? If you haven’t already done so, please upload your vaccination documentation card to the college’s Pooled Testing Exemption webpage. Once your documentation has been reviewed by our Health Services office, your student record will be updated and you will receive an email confirmation. You may choose to continue to be tested for COVID-19 on campus if you prefer to do so.

Unable to receive the vaccine for medical or religious reasons? Please complete the Request for Waiver from Immunization (PDF). Any individual who received a medical or religious vaccine exemption and comes to campus this fall will be required to undergo weekly pooled testing; complete daily health screening, maintain six feet of social distancing and wear a face mask while indoors on campus.
NOTE: Health Science students are not eligible to receive a waiver. Students enrolled in Health Science programs that have a hospital clinical component, must have the vaccine to attend clinical rotations and therefore complete these programs.

Electing not to receive the vaccine? Please ensure you’ve chosen classes that meet in a fully online and/or remote format. If you need to make scheduling changes, please speak to your academic advisor as soon as possible to discuss the best way to continue your studies; they can help you to enroll in online or remote classes wherever possible.

REFUND POLICY: We understand that the options presented above may not work for everyone. If you have elected not to be vaccinated, are not approved for an exemption, and do not study online or remotely, please be aware of the college’s Refund Policy, which states that in order to receive a full refund, you must withdraw from classes by Sunday, Aug. 29 by emailing

MASK USAGE: Please be aware that Hudson Valley continues to follow CDC mask guidance on COVID-19 safety regulations; therefore, effective Monday, Aug. 23, all individuals on campus will be required to wear masks at all times while indoors, whether or not they are vaccinated, unless alone in a private office or classroom, eating or drinking or unable to wear a mask due to a medical condition.  

For more information, visit If you have questions, we are here to help. Please call my office at (518) 629-7307. We look forward to seeing everyone again, safely, this fall.

Thank you,

Louis B. Coplin, II
Vice President for Student Affairs
Hudson Valley Community College
l.coplin@hvcc.eduStudent wearing a mask