PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) – COVID-19 precautions differ from school to school. WAVY.com compiled a list of the vaccine and mask requirements at local colleges and universities so you know what’s expected of students and staff before you set foot on campus this school year.

Bryant & Stratton College


“At this time, the College does not plan to require vaccinations on Virginia campuses for the Fall 2021 term and continues to recommend that unvaccinated students and staff wear face coverings on campus when indoors. This plan is subject to change based on any new guidance from the CDC, state requirements in Virginia, and guidelines from the Department of Health. We encourage all students to regularly monitor our COVID-19 page or reach out to campus offices with specific questions to stay informed about all new updates.” – Bryant & Stratton College


Bryant & Stratton is recommending that unvaccinated students, faculty and staff wear face coverings on campus except when they’re alone in a room, office or other enclosed space.

To learn more about Bryant & Stratton’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

Christopher Newport University


Reporting vaccination status: Per Governor Northam, vaccination is now mandated for state employees.

In May, Christopher Newport’s Board of Visitors required all students to be vaccinated in order to enroll for the fall semester. The deadline for proof of vaccination for students was August 1.

  • All students must either be vaccinated or have approved exemptions. At last check, about 98% of CNU students had complied with this requirement and the vast majority are vaccinated. Those that aren’t vaccinated will undergo regular testing.
  • Students must wear face coverings when indoors anywhere on campus with the exception of private residence hall rooms or shared common spaces within residence hall rooms.
  • Students must complete a daily symptom screener and there are community tracing teams that will follow up to reports of virus symptoms

CNU is attempting to de-densify the residence halls whenever possible. Often students have identified preferred roommates and the university tries to comply with those requests. However, if students can be spread among more rooms, they are. As far as cleaning procedures go, CNU is continuing to take extra steps to clean common areas and other high touch areas – door knobs, elevator buttons and the like. 

In October, CNU released a COVID-19 protocol update, stating, “Following CDC’s continued guidance, and doing all we can to protect our campus while local case counts remain concerning, we will stay the course with our mask requirement: everyone, regardless of vaccine status, wears a mask indoors. Right now, we expect to keep the mask policy in place through the end of the fall semester. And a note, in response to some recent questions: If you are traveling with others on university business, please treat your vehicle as “indoors” and wear a mask. If you have any questions regarding “to mask or not to mask,” please don’t hesitate to ask.”


CNU is “temporarily requiring the wearing of masks indoors by everyone in shared spaces regardless of vaccination status effective August 12 at 5 a.m.” Masks will not be required outdoors, but if you are unvaccinated, we urge you to practice physical distancing at crowded outdoor events and whenever possible indoors.

To learn more about CNU’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

Hampton University

Vaccinations/Health Protocols

Students and faculty are required to get the COVID-19 vaccine prior to returning to campus. There are medical and religious exemptions. Everyone must wear required face coverings in all public spaces and practice physical distancing.

Mitigation Strategies include: Increasing routine cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting of all campus buildings. Electrostatic and ultraviolet light cleaning. Installation of hand sanitizer stations, disinfecting wipes and air purifiers. Daily temperature scans. Installation of plexiglass partitions in residence halls. 

The density in residence halls has been reduced. And there are more single room options with fewer people sharing bathrooms.


Hampton University requires students to wear masks in class and outdoors. Faculty and staff are required to do the same. 

To learn more about HU’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

Norfolk State University


NSU announced all students and employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, saying that given the increasing number of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths from COVID-19 among the unvaccinated population, this decision is what is best for the safety and health of the community.

All students received an email to their NSU address with a survey to be completed by August 6. The survey provided information to upload a card, inform NSU that you are in process with the vaccination, or information on exemptions.

Students who fail to comply with the vaccination/testing mandate will be referred to the Dean of Students Office for Student Conduct. This may lead to removal from on-campus housing and face-to face courses. In addition, students will not be permitted to participate in extracurricular activities.

On August 23, President Javaune Adams-Gaston and the Executive Cabinet announced details of award cash incentives for those who have followed the state mandate for vaccination.

“NSU will recognize those who are in compliance and offer an incentive for those who have yet to be vaccinated. We also will extend our ‘culture of care’ by acknowledging the hardship that the COVID-19 pandemic has placed on our community.”

President Javaune Adams-Gaston

Effective immediately, the following incentives are offered with a projected payout date of October 15, 2021:

All validated students who are fully vaccinated and have provided proper proof of vaccination by September 20, 2021, will receive a $500 incentive. Students are encouraged to log into their student account to confirm the banking information for faster and safer distribution of the incentive through direct deposit.
All Faculty/Staff who are fully vaccinated and have provided proper proof of vaccination by September 20, 2021, will receive a $1000 incentive. The incentive will be issued through payroll.

Health Protocols

During fall 2021 move-in, students will receive a COVID-19 safety starter kit (masks, hand sanitizer, alcohol wipes, and thermometer). During their mandatory community meeting, they are reminded of social distancing expectations and given an overview of COVID-19 symptoms and protocol for seeking medical assistance on campus and off-campus. They are also informed of the University’s response to COVID-19 (sanitation and disinfecting protocols) within the residential communities. Here are a few other items currently in effect and being reviewed for fall 2021 to promote physical distancing and reduce the threat of coronavirus in the residential communities:

  • Required face coverings that cover the nose and mouth be worn in all interior public spaces.
  • Hand sanitizer is provided in the lobby of each residential community, near elevators, and in common areas.  
  • Conducting rigorous sanitation processes to daily clean and disinfect common areas and high touch-point areas.
  • De-densify the residential communities to provide double room inventory rather than triple rooms. 
  • Reserved spaces for isolation and quarantine housing.
  • Suspended room change requests until further notice. 
  • Reduced number of guests assisting with move-in. 
  • Suspended guest visitation until further notice. The fall 2021 protocol is under review. 
  • Suspended tours in the residential facilities until further notice.  The fall 2021 protocol is under review.
  • Suspended the use of amenities like cookware or recreational equipment for checkout from the front desk until further notice. 
  • Limited the number of in-person interaction within the residential communities. Behavioral issues will be handled via Zoom, Blackboard or telephone, when possible. 
  • Limited student access to common spaces.  

Students who experience COVID-19 symptoms are asked to contact the Spartan Health Center. Once our office is notified by the Health Center that a student needs to be placed in quarantine or isolation, one of our certified nurse assistants sends an email to the student and provides information on items they need to bring to the quarantine or isolation housing location. They also follow up with a phone call to the student.  


Masking indoors is required of all community members regardless of vaccination status. 

To learn more about NSU’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

Old Dominion University


Students are required be fully vaccinated before arriving on campus this fall and had to confirm proof of vaccination by August 1, unless claiming an exemption. Exemptions will be accommodated for medical reasons and religious beliefs. All students who do not submit proof of vaccination for any reason must complete the Assumption of Risk Form. Students who take only online courses and never come to an ODU campus or location will not be required to have the COVID-19 vaccine.

Per ODU, “Faculty and staff are strongly encouraged to be fully vaccinated by August 1 for COVID-19 to prevent disease. Faculty and staff who choose not to be vaccinated should understand the risk they are assuming.”

Unvaccinated faculty, staff and students may be subject to testing.

Health Protocols

The University will continue following the latest public health best practices — including enhanced cleaning, reduced capacity in residence halls, testing and contact tracing, and providing excellent care for students before, during and after quarantine and isolation — in accordance with recent guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other agencies, while also following similar actions being taken across many sectors of our society.


Effective August 16, 2021 and until further notice, Old Dominion University will require face masks that cover both the mouth and nose fully in all indoor public spaces, including classrooms, facilities and buildings, except when eating or drinking.

At this time, non-ODU visitors will not be permitted in residence halls. 

To learn more about ODU’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

Regent University


Regent University will not require students and employees to be vaccinated prior to returning to campus for Fall 2021. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) strongly encourages individuals to be vaccinated for the COVID-19 virus.

Completion of the daily self-screening questionnaire will not be required. However, if students or employees have symptoms, or believe they have been exposed to COVID-19, they should navigate to the MyRegent portal, complete the questionnaire, and remain in place until the Office of Student Services or the Human Resources Department contacts them, respectively.

Students will be allowed to submit one of three types of proofs to allow for immediate move-in upon arrival:

  • Proof of a negative-PCR test result (from an independent lab) within seven (7) days prior to returning to campus.
  • Proof of a positive test result more than 10 days (with no fever for 24 hours) and up to three months prior to arriving on campus.
  • Proof of vaccination.
  • Students without the above proofs will be subject to free PCR testing upon arrival; move-in will be delayed until 2 pm the following day after testing.
  • All students (including commuters) will be subject to random PCR testing throughout the semester.
  • Except for commuters, all other outside guests will be prohibited from visiting campus housing except during move-in/move-out days


Masking protocols at Regent will follow CDC guidelines which state that fully vaccinated individuals can resume activities without wearing a mask (except where subject to specific governmental laws, rules, and regulations); however, vaccinated individuals may continue to wear masks if they so choose. Unvaccinated individuals are strongly encouraged by the CDC to continue to wear masks and get vaccinated. Regent is encouraging employees and students to respect these guidelines and conduct themselves in a manner that best preserves their own health and the health of others.

To learn more about Regent University’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

Thomas Nelson Community College


At this time, students are not required to be vaccinated at TNCC.

Employees are required to get vaccinated per Governor’s orders. They are required to show proof that they are fully vaccinated or be tested for COVID-19 every week. The new mandate requires disclosure of vaccination status by September 1, 2021. Employees who are not fully vaccinated by this date, or refuse disclosure of their vaccination status, will be required to provide evidence of weekly negative COVID test results.

Faculty and staff seeking a religious and/or medical exemption are required to coordinate with Human Resources to ensure the appropriate documentation is available for review and consideration of exemption status.


TNCC does have an indoor mask requirement for all students, faculty, staff, and visitors in college-owned or leased spaces, regardless of vaccination status, beginning August 9.

To learn more about TNCC’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

Virginia Wesleyan College


All students returning to campus, or participating in a University sponsored off-site program (student teaching, internships, or study away), for the 2021-2022 Academic Year will be required to submit proof of COVID-19 vaccination. Students had to submit proof of their COVID-19 vaccination by August 1. Limited exceptions, for medical or religious reasons, are being considered on a case-by-case basis.

All faculty and staff, including primary contract services, are required to submit proof of COVID-19 vaccination.


Masks and face coverings are optional for fully vaccinated individuals. All unvaccinated individuals are required to wear face coverings on campus at all times. The University may alter requirements for outside community members who are visiting campus based on guidance and conditions.

To learn more about Virginia Wesleyan’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

William & Mary

November 3 COVID-19 policy updates:

COVID-19 Testing

The CDC has updated its guidance related to COVID-19 testing. Now, both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals who have a close contact with someone with COVID-19 should be tested 5–7 days after their last exposure. People identified as close contacts, who are not yet fully vaccinated, should test twice: first upon learning they have become a close contact of a positive person and again 5-7 days after their exposure.

As a reminder, close contacts who have been vaccinated do not need to quarantine, but should take extra precautions while awaiting their test results. It is important that anyone who has been a close contact test at the right time to avoid receiving a false test result.

In addition, if you test positive for COVID-19 or are identified as a close contact (regardless of vaccination status), please remember to share that information via ReportCOVID.wm.edu. Completing this brief form puts you in touch with a case manager to help navigate work or study and initiates contact tracing. This applies to all students, faculty and staff members. If you are uncertain whether you are a close contact, you can report and a case manager will help you evaluate whether you meet the criteria for being considered a close contact.  

Virginia Department of Health: Boosters 

The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) has indicated that employees at higher education institutions are eligible to receive a booster COVID-19 vaccine. It is not required to receive a booster vaccine at this time to be able to work at William & Mary. However, given that boosters are widely available, if you do wish to receive a booster vaccine and are within the appropriate time frame to do so, please visit your preferred pharmacy and let them know that you work at William & Mary. Similarly, students are also eligible for booster shots if they live in congregate settings.

As of July 29, 2021, the university required vaccination for all students, faculty, and staff unless an express exemption applies. All students, faculty, and staff were required to record the first vaccination dose in the Kallaco portal on or before Tuesday, Aug. 10. The second or final dose was due on or before Friday, September 17. William & Mary will observe appropriate medical and religious exemptions.

Routine testing of those who are in the process of vaccination or exempted will continue as a condition of their participation in in-person activities.

View the William and Mary COVID-19 dashboard here.

Health Protocols

Oct. 21 Update: W&M announced the following changes to its evolving COVID-19 protocols:

Vaccination Update: The university requires COVID-19 vaccination for all students, faculty and staff, unless an express disability or religious exemption applies. For Fall 2021, all students, faculty and staff were required to record final vaccination doses in September. There are not yet plans for widespread vaccination boosters. To file for disability and religious exemptions and deferrals, visit Exemptions and Deferrals for instructions.

Spring 2022: The deadline for recording both vaccination doses in the Kallaco portal or securing an approved exemption is Monday, December 20.

  • Continuing students, faculty and staff: Those who already uploaded proof of full vaccination do not need to take any action. Those who had an approved religious exemption do not need to take any action. Those who had a disability deferral or a temporary exemption (e.g., remote learning or accommodation) must secure a spring exemption by December 20.
  • Newly-admitted or readmitted students: Upload vaccination records in the Kallaco portal as soon as possible after deposit or securing readmission. Spring students who are admitted or readmitted after December 20 have until Tuesday, January 4, to upload proof of full vaccination to Kallaco or to secure an exemption.
  • Faculty and staff who are newly-hired or returning from leave: Upload vaccination records in the Kallaco portal by December 20 or within one week of employment activation for Spring 2022.


Beginning August 10, William & Mary temporarily reinstated a requirement for masks to be worn indoors by everyone, including visitors, in shared spaces. The policy applies to all classrooms, labs, shared offices and hallways in buildings on William & Mary properties. The indoor mask requirement does not apply to single-occupant offices, nor to student rooms or common areas in residence halls.

The college said indoor mask requirements will be re-evaluated throughout the school year.

To learn more about William & Mary’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

You can submit questions may to COVIDResponse@wm.edu.

Rappahannock Community College


“Vaccinations are optional right now for the Fall semester. We did, last week, reinstate the mask mandate. RCC is a Vaccine Champion College and a proud participant of the White House COVID Vaccination Challenge Initiative. We do encourage students to get vaccinated for the Fall, but it is not required at the moment. As of right now there are no testing mandates. It is a requirement to self-screen daily.” – Abby Parsons, Media Services Manager


Students and employees will be required to wear masks while on campus.

To learn more about Rappahannock Community College’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

Eastern Virginia Medical School


All students (both entering and continuing) must be vaccinated by Aug. 1, 2021. Distance learning students are exempted from this directive. All EVMS employees are required to be fully vaccinated by Oct. 1, with exemptions for medical and religious reasons.

Effective Sept. 1, all new hires who are not fully vaccinated will be required to obtain at least the first vaccine dose by their start date and the second dose (if applicable) within sixty days of employment.

To learn more about the EVMS Vaccination policy, click here.


Effective Aug. 4, employees, students and visitors will be required to wear masks inside all EVMS buildings regardless of vaccination status.

To learn more about EVMS masking policy click here.

Tidewater Community College


TCC said whether to get the vaccine or not is an individual decision and the college will not mandate that anyone be vaccinated.  “While we are not mandating the vaccine, we do strongly encourage everyone to get vaccinated against COVID 19.” 

The college said it will reduce the risk of employee exposure by asking employees to self-monitor their symptoms and will have employees sign in each day to attest that they are symptom free. The college is adhering to workplace safety best practices provided by the Virginia Department of Health, the CDC, and the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry.


On Wednesday, August 4, VCCS Chancellor Dr. Glenn DuBois, announced a mask mandate for public indoor spaces at our colleges, regardless of vaccination status. TCC implemented this mandate inside all college facilities on Thursday, August 5, which will remain in effect until an update is provided.

To learn more about TCC’s vaccination and masking policies, click here.

Chowan University


Students and staff are not required to be vaccinated. Chowan University is highly encouraging students and staff to get vaccinated, per Andy Wilson, VP for University Advancement. Wilson says they will do random testing of unvaccinated students and staff.


CU requires masks in most indoor settings. No face covering is required outdoors, but it is recommended for those who are unvaccinated and cannot maintain social distancing of at least three feet.

To learn more about how Chowan University plans to safely reopen during the pandemic, click here.

College of Albemarle


COA encourages all eligible students, faculty, staff, and visitors to be vaccinated against COVID-19. While the college does not require vaccination, administrators say, “We all share a responsibility to do everything we can to keep our community safe from the coronavirus.”


Students, faculty and staff are required to wear a face mask while on campus. Select programs may have additional requirements; your instructor will notify you of any additional requirements.

To learn more about College of the Albemarle’s masking and vaccination policies, click here.

Elizabeth City State University


The university released the following about vaccination requirements:

“As an institution and a constituent institution of the University of North Carolina System, we cannot require students to take the vaccine.  But, we are strongly encouraging each student to do so and to provide documentation of your vaccination to Student Health Services prior to your arrival on campus.”


Wearing face masks or face coverings is required by all faculty, staff, students and visitors when on the ECSU campus. The only exceptions are when employees are in their private offices, and when students are in their residence hall rooms.

To learn more about ECSU’s masking and vaccination policies, click here.