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No Vaccine Mandate to Attend, Work at a Virginia Community College Masks are Optional for Those Fully Vaccinated Against COVID-19

(Richmond) – Glenn Dubois, the chancellor of Virginia’s Community Colleges, made the following statement today regarding COVID-19 vaccines and mask usage across our institutions:

“After consulting with presidents and senior leaders across our 23 community colleges, I believe it is in the best interests of our faculty, staff, and students to encourage everyone to get their COVID-19 vaccine. However, we will not require an individual be vaccinated to attend or to work at one of our colleges.

The lack of residence halls on community college campuses makes this issue different for us than it is for universities. Similarly, community colleges lack the public health infrastructure that is required to support such densely populated on-campus living arrangements, including the creation, maintenance, and protection of personal student health data, like vaccination records. And given our colleges’ offerings of short-term training and credentialing programs, mandating proof of vaccination may create an impractical and unintended barrier to student enrollment, thus diminishing our ability to deliver our mission at this critical time.

Further, effective immediately, we will not require those who are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 to wear a mask while on a Virginia Community College campus. This is in accordance with the most recent guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Office of Governor Ralph Northam, and the Virginia Department of Human Resource Management (DHRM). Of course, if you are fully vaccinated and you are still uncomfortable around others, please continue to wear your face covering knowing that you have our support to do so.”

Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) is the largest public institution of higher learning in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls nearly 80,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield (Medical Education Campus) and Woodbridge, through NOVA Online and high school dual enrollment. We offer more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs to help our students reach their academic and professional goals through university transfers and access to the most in-demand careers. At NOVA, we strive to ensure that every student succeeds, every program achieves and every community prospers. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, visit our website, www.nvcc.eduor call 703.323.3000.