April 21, 2021

Our New COVID-19 Vaccination Policy For Students

As part of our health and safety approach for the fall 2021 semester, we will require proof of COVID vaccination for all students.

Dear Students,

We have all worked together to keep everyone in the community safe over the course of the pandemic. We’ve had a remarkably low incidence of COVID-19 on our campus–and we aim to keep things that way.

While we were successful in delivering hybrid instruction over the last academic year, we are eager to return to what we do best: in-person classes in a close-knit environment on one of the nation’s most beautiful campuses.

As part of our health and safety approach for the fall 2021 semester, we will require proof of COVID vaccination for all students. All students (undergraduate, graduate, and law) will need to be fully vaccinated, or have an approved exemption, by October 15, 2021. (This requirement does not apply to programs that are fully online or for which physical presence on campus is not necessary.) This policy will allow us to return as much as possible to the pre-pandemic instruction and activities that are the hallmark of a Lewis & Clark education. Please see the full vaccination policy here.

All students became eligible for vaccination on April 19. If you wish to pursue vaccination at locations off-campus in Oregon, we encourage you to visit this website. If you sign up for a two-dose vaccine–Moderna or Pfizer–and you will be departing Portland at the end of the semester, you will need to arrange to receive the second matching vaccine dose at your destination. Another option would be for you to attempt to register now for your vaccine series in the state or country to which you will be traveling.

As you know, the COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the United States are highly effective at preventing infection, as well as at preventing serious illness or death, even in those who do get the virus. Getting vaccinated and following CDC’s recommendations are the best protection from COVID-19.

We’re announcing this policy now so that students and their families have the opportunity to gather information, consult with their medical providers, and make informed choices for themselves. The college has also strongly urged all staff and faculty to get immunized against COVID-19 at the earliest opportunity. Many have already done so.

Students may request an exemption from the vaccination requirement for medical or non-medical reasons as provided by Oregon and federal law. We’ll work directly with international or other students abroad who may have received a vaccine not currently approved for use in the United States. For students who find it impossible to be vaccinated prior to arrival on campus in the fall, we anticipate having vaccinations available through our Health Service.

We’ve created an FAQ document that goes into more detail. Any additional questions or concerns regarding this vaccination policy should be directed to the Wellness Services at covid19info@lclark.edu.

We appreciate your patience, understanding, and commitment to health and safety as we continue to navigate the challenges of COVID-19. Thank you.


Robin H. Holmes-Sullivan
Vice President of Student Life and Dean of Students