COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement

Fordham University requires all students who are taking in-person classes, living in University housing, or entering the campus for any reason to be up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines, which currently includes a booster dose. It may be necessary to require a second booster shot for eligible individuals for the 2022-2023 academic year. New students will be notified of the deadline to upload their information, which will be in mid to late July. If you are not yet eligible to receive a booster dose, you must receive one within 2 weeks of becoming eligible.  If your original vaccine was mRNA-based, you can receive a booster of either mRNA vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) five months after your second dose. If your original vaccine was viral vector-based (Johnson & Johnson), you can receive a booster of either mRNA or viral vector vaccine two months after your initial vaccine.

How to submit your vaccine records?

  • Upload your vaccine records via the VitalCheck Daily Questionnaire

Questions about International vaccines?

Current guidance from the New York State Department of Health (DOH) and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding vaccines used outside of the United States states as follows:

  • Individuals who received a full series of a vaccine currently authorized for emergency use by the World Health Organization (WHO) are now authorized to receive a single booster dose of Pfizer vaccine at least 6 months after completing their primary series.
  • For individuals who were partially vaccinated with a WHO-authorized vaccine or who were vaccinated with a vaccine not authorized for emergency use by the WHO, a full series of an FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine can be administered with a minimal interval of 28-days post-vaccination with a non-FDA-authorized vaccine.

Fordham will accept a full series of an FDA-authorized OR WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccine. Those who have not received one of these upon arrival to campus will need to have a full series of an FDA-authorized administered as soon as medically possible. Please be aware that current CDC guidelines may prevent you from entering the United States without an FDA or WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccine. Please see the FAQ for Students Living Overseas below for additional details. If DOH and/or CDC guidance changes, we will update this information.

Vaccines on campus

We plan to continue offering the vaccine on campus to current students and to incoming students through the end of the spring semester and in August before classes begin for the fall semester for those who do not have access to the vaccine at home, particularly students who are outside of the United States. Information about vaccines on campus can be found on the COVID-19 Testing and Resources page.

Exemptions from Immunization Requirements

Medical Exemption: If a licensed physician or nurse practitioner certifies in writing that the student has a health condition that is a valid contraindication to receiving a specific vaccine, then a permanent or temporary (for resolvable conditions such as pregnancy) exemption may be granted. This statement must specify those immunizations which may be detrimental and the length of time they may be detrimental.

In the event of an outbreak, medically exempt individuals should be protected from exposure. This may include exclusion from classes or campus.

Religious Exemption: A student may be exempt from vaccination if, in the opinion of the university, that student or student's parent(s) or guardian of those less than 18 years old holds genuine and sincere religious beliefs which are contrary to the practice of immunization. Requests for exemptions must be written and signed by the student if 18 years of age or older, or parent(s), or guardian if under the age of 18. The university may require supporting documents.

In the event of an outbreak, religiously exempt individuals should be protected from exposure. This may include exclusion from classes or campus.

To request a medical or religious exemption, please submit the Exemption Form via email to health@fordham.edu. Exemption requests will only be accepted from students once they have confirmed their intention to enroll at Fordham (most commonly done by submitting a deposit) beginning in mid-May. Forms will be reviewed on an ongoing basis after commencement and we expect to respond beginning June 1 or within one week of submission. The deadline to submit a request for an exemption for Fall 2022 is Thursday, July 14, 2022. The deadline for students enrolled in Summer Session I classes is Wednesday, May 25 and for Summer Session II classes is Wednesday, June 29.

Updated: April 25, 2022

  • International vaccines

    Based on current guidance from the New York State Department of Health (DOH) and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Fordham accepts a full series of an FDA-authorized OR WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccine. Those who have not received one of these upon arrival to campus will need to have a full series of an FDA-authorized administered as soon as medically possible. If DOH and/or CDC guidance changes, we will update this information. Please be aware that current CDC guidelines may prevent you from entering the United States unless you have received a full dose of an FDA or WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccine.

    FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines:

    The FDA has listed the following COVID-19 vaccines for use:

    • Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines (e.g., COMIRNATY, Tozinameran)

    • Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) COVID-19 vaccine

    • Moderna COVID-10 vaccine

    WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccines:

    As of January 12, 2022, WHO has listed the following COVID-19 vaccines for use:

    • Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines (e.g., COMIRNATY, Tozinameran)

    • AstraZeneca-Oxford COVID-19 vaccines (e.g., Covishield, Vaxzevria)

    • Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) COVID-19 vaccine

    • Moderna COVID-19 vaccine

    • Sinopharm Beijing Institute of Biological Products (BIBP) COVID-19 vaccine
      (Sinopharm Wuhan Institute of Biological Products (WIBP) is a separate vaccine from Sinopharm BIBP and has not been listed for emergency use by the WHO as of January 12, 2022.)

    • Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine

    • Bharat Biotech International COVID-19 vaccine (e.g. COVAXIN)

    • Novavax COVID-19 vaccine (e.g., Covovax, Nuvaxovid)

    Am I eligible to get a booster dose?

    If you completed a Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine series, you are eligible for a booster dose after 5 months. If you completed a J&J/Janssen COVID-19 vaccine primary series, you are eligible after 2 months.

    If you were vaccinated abroad with other COVID-19 vaccines you can get a booster shot if you either:

    • Received all the recommended doses of a World Health Organization emergency use listing (WHO-EUL) COVID-19 vaccine
    • Or completed a mix and match series composed of any combination of FDA-approved, FDA-authorized, or WHO-EUL COVID-19 vaccines

    If you meet the above requirements you can get a single booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at least 5 months after getting all recommended doses or completing a mix and match COVID-19 vaccine series.

    Should I get vaccinated before coming to the United States?

    Students who are living outside of the US should be up-to-date with an FDA-authorized OR WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccine if available.  See above for the list of vaccines authorized by the CDC and WHO.

    What does it mean to be “up to date”?

    Up to date means a person has received all recommended COVID-19 vaccines, including any booster dose(s) when eligible.

    What does it mean to be “fully vaccinated”?

    In general, people are considered fully vaccinated:

    • 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or

    • 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine

    Can I wait and get vaccinated after arriving in the United States?

    If you are able to be up to date with FDA-authorized OR WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccines prior to coming to the US, please do so.  If that is not possible:

    • you must email health@fordham.edu to notify us of your inability or delay in complying with the vaccine requirement AND

    • you must get an FDA-authorized vaccine on campus within 48 hours of your arrival in the US OR 

    • you can get an FDA-authorized vaccine off campus and upload the records from an off campus vaccine within 48 hours of your arrival in the US.

    • Please be aware that current CDC guidelines may prevent you from entering the United States unless you have received a full dose of an FDA or WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccine.

    If you are not up to date with your vaccines by the first day you need to enter campus (i.e. to move into University Housing, attend Global Transition, attend New Student Orientation, or attend class):

    • you MUST also upload negative test results from a FDA or WHO EUA authorized PCR saliva or nasal swab test (NOT an antigen or antibody test - rapid tests cannot be accepted for pre-arrival testing) within the 7-day period before coming to campus or entering any Fordham property. You are welcome to come to campus for testing. You can find the sign up link on this COVID-19 Info Center webpage; AND 

    • submit weekly test results until you are fully vaccinated AND

    • comply with additional guidelines related to social distancing and wearing of facial coverings, which will be shared with you closer to your arrival.

    • You will also be required to comply with NYS DOH guidelines for quarantine if exposed to someone who tests positive for Covid-19

    What if I already received the full dose of a vaccine not authorized by the FDA or WHO?

    Students who were partially vaccinated with a WHO-authorized vaccine or who were vaccinated with a vaccine not authorized for emergency use by the WHO, a full series of an FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine can be administered with a minimal interval of 28-days post vaccination with a non-FDA-authorized vaccine.  Please email health@fordham.edu to notify us of your alternate vaccine.

    If I am not fully up to date with vaccines upon arrival in the United States, can I move into University Housing or enter campus for other reasons (including Global Transition, New Student Orientation or the first day of classes)?

    If you were unable to be up to date with an FDA-authorized OR WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccine prior to arrival in the US, you will be allowed to enter campus following the guidelines listed above as long as you are in the process of completing the vaccine series and following the information outlined above.

    I am traveling from outside of the US to return to Fordham. Will I have to quarantine upon my arrival?

    According to New York State guidelines, asymptomatic travelers entering New York from another country, U.S. state, or territory are not currently required to test or quarantine. International travelers must comply with CDC requirements, which currently include proof of negative test or recent COVID recovery in order to board airplanes headed to the US.

    Updated: March 11, 2022