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04-14-21-penn-vaccination-site-covid-19-vaccine-gimbel-gymnasium-chase-sutton

History professor Anne Berg receives a dose of the Moderna vaccine, administered by Anredra Pendergrass, at the Gimbel Gymnasium vaccine site on April 14.

Credit: Chase Sutton

Faculty, staff, and postdoctoral students will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to the start of the fall semester.

Penn President Amy Gutmann, Provost Wendell Pritchett, and Executive Vice President Craig Carnaroli announced in an email to faculty, staff, and postdocs on June 1 that they must be fully vaccinated no later than August 1. Beginning July 1, Penn employees and postdocs who have submitted proof of vaccination will be exempt from regular COVID-19 testing.

The announcement makes Penn the fourth Ivy League institution — following Brown, Columbia, and Yale — to require that its employees receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Employees and postdocs who choose not to receive the vaccine for medical or religious reasons or who choose not to disclose their vaccination status are required to continue wearing masks indoors, participating in daily symptom checks via PennnOpen Pass, and being tested regularly for COVID-19, the administrators wrote. Employees of Penn’s health schools may be subject to additional school-specific guidelines.

PennOpen Pass will only be used to monitor testing compliance and COVID-19 symptoms for employees and postdocs who have not reported their vaccination status and will no longer be used to enter campus buildings.

Classrooms, labs, and other University spaces will be used at 100% capacity in the fall semester in accordance with the City of Philadelphia's lifting of physical distancing restrictions on June 2. The University will eventually not require the use of masks indoors, but plans to keep the indoor mask mandate in place during cold and flu season, the administrators wrote reads. The University previously announced on May 21 that fully vaccinated members of the Penn community will no longer be required to wear masks outdoors.

University administrators announced on April 22 that all students without medical or religious exemptions will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 ahead of the fall semester.

“Vaccinated individuals should expect to return to pre-pandemic conditions while on campus,” Gutmann, Pritchett, and Carnaroli wrote. “Getting vaccinated and recording your vaccination status are the next and most critical steps in our collective efforts to end this crisis and return to normalcy.”

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