Dear Faculty and Staff,
Thank you for your dedication to Mercy College and we applaud your efforts in helping our students finish the year successfully. We hope you have been enjoying the warmer weather and we look forward to welcoming you back in-person on July 1 and having our campuses fully open for the Fall term.
I write today with two important updates to the College’s health and safety policies related to COVID-19. Based on the widespread availability and known efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines, Mercy will implement the following policies for the vaccine and the wearing of masks while on campus. These efforts are in alignment with many Colleges and Universities in our region and are intended to help keep our students, faculty and staff safe while continuing to provide in-person academic offerings.
Please join us for a Town Hall via Zoom on Thursday, June 10 at 11:00 a.m. with COVID-19 Task Force leaders to learn more about these policies and to have your questions answered.
Here is the information to join the Zoom Town Hall: https://mercy.zoom.us/j/96095994264?pwd=U3MxUTlxSzRvYStnRlFMQTlwM1l4UT09
Faculty and Staff who will be on campus or engage in any level of in-person instruction or activity for the Fall 2021 term are strongly encouraged to submit proof of COVID vaccination by July 1.
Students who will be on campus or engage in any level of in-person instruction or activity for the Fall 2021 term will be required to submit proof of COVID vaccination by the start of the Fall 2021 term.
Faculty, staff and students who remain unvaccinated will be required to participate in weekly surveillance testing and may be subject to other safety restrictions.
Next Steps for Faculty and Staff:
By July 1, 2021 (for staff) or by August 31, 2021 (for faculty), all employees must either submit proof of vaccination or confirm that they have chosen to decline the COVID-19 vaccine, through the College’s health records management system here. Please note that this page will be available to upload documents the week of June 14.
Mercy will accept the following vaccines with emergency use authorization by the FDA: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson / Janssen.
For those who may be receiving vaccinations outside of the U.S., Mercy College will accept documentation of COVID-19 vaccines which the World Health Organization has issued an Emergency Use Listing (WHO EUL).
Acceptable proof includes a copy or photo of the vaccine card, a copy of the New York State Excelsior Pass, or email documentation from your medical provider including the dates and type of vaccination.
Outdoors: Masks are not required when outdoors.
Indoor Common Spaces: Masks are required indoors when in common spaces such as hallways, bathrooms, elevators, cafeteria lines, bookstores, and libraries, as well as in the fitness center, health office or counseling office.
Classrooms: At this time, masks are required by faculty and students in all classrooms, regardless of vaccination status.
Offices: Masks are not required for those who work in individual offices. In shared offices, masks are not required for vaccinated individuals who are seated at their own desk. If all employees in an office are vaccinated, they may agree to not wear masks while moving about the office.
Visitors to offices or cubicles, including students: Masks are required when you visit someone’s office or cubicle. Masks can only be removed if both individuals are vaccinated and give consent to not wearing a mask. While you can ask someone whether they are vaccinated, it is against the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to ask an individual why they are not vaccinated; if uncertain of vaccination status, continue to wear your mask.
Meeting rooms: Masks are required during group meetings regardless of vaccination status.
Please note that these policy guidelines will be formalized by the College’s Non-Academic Policy Review Committee later this week. Additionally, the College will continue to evaluate and adjust these guidelines based on the evolving guidance being issued by the CDC and New York State.
We appreciate your cooperation and support as we strive to keep our community safe. By working together, we can achieve herd immunity, the possibility of no longer requiring masks on campus, and the goal of an uninterrupted in-person academic year.
Director, Human Resources