Dear Members of the TC Community,

We write today to share important information on the College’s COVID-19 vaccine requirement that was previously announced on May 19. As you know, having a vaccinated population is critical to our return to in-person instruction and related activities. We appreciate your prompt completion of the vaccine requirement to help facilitate a smooth and safe return to campus this fall. 

TC COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement

  • Effective August 1, 2021, all new and returning students, staff, faculty, and TC housing affiliates must be fully vaccinated in order to access campus for the fall 2021 semester. All individuals who plan to access campus on or after August 1 must submit proof of vaccination no later than 10 days in advance of the date which they plan to access campus.
  • All members of the TC community are required to submit proof of vaccination. We ask that you upload proof of vaccination as soon as possible (and for incoming students, as soon as your UNI is active).
  • TC will accept all COVID-19 Vaccines that have received Emergency Use Authorization by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the World Health Organization. Vaccines must have been administered on or after December 1, 2020.
  • In accordance with New York State public health laws, the College will allow religious and medical exemptions, as we do for other vaccines. Information on how to request a medical or religious exemption is forthcoming; please email with questions.
  • By August 16, anyone who has not demonstrated proof of vaccination as outlined below will not be able to access campus until they have met the requirement.


Submitting Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination

TC Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination Form
Beginning today, June 9, students, staff, faculty, and TC housing affiliates must submit their vaccine documentation via the TC Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination Form on the TC Preparedness website. You must be logged into your TC account to access the form.

Uploading Documentation
To complete the form, you will be asked to verify that you have been vaccinated by uploading a picture/copy of your CDC COVID-19 Vaccine Card; World Health Organization (WHO) Vaccine Booklet; or documentation provided by a health care professional, organization, or another country containing details of your vaccinations. All documentation must be submitted in English or accompanied by a certified translation.

Upload Documentation


Processing of COVID-19 Vaccination Record

The Office of Human Resources, The Office of Student Health & Wellness, and the Office of Residential Services will be processing vaccination forms and records for Employees, Students, and TC Affiliates. Individuals who intend to access campus for any reason must be fully vaccinated and submit proof of their COVID-19 vaccination at least 10 working days prior to entering campus to ensure adequate time for the College to process submissions. Please be sure to submit no later than August 1, 2021, if you need access by mid-August or soon thereafter.

All documentation provided is subject to review, and verification of documentation is at the sole discretion of the College. Additional information or documentation may be requested and, if requested, must be provided in order to verify a submission.

Approval of Vaccination Record   
If your vaccination submission record is accepted, the COVID-19 vaccine requirement for entering campus under the Teachers College Community Health Compact will be fulfilled. Upon successful completion of the Daily Health Screen, you will receive a “green check” if all other campus access requirements have been met, and may proceed to campus.

Rejection of Vaccination Record   
If your vaccination submission record is rejected you will be notified, and subsequently will receive a red X on the Daily Health Screen, denying campus entry. Reasons for a rejected vaccination record could include: Vaccination dates that do not match the dates on your document; not being fully vaccinated as per CDC or WHO guidelines; or a document that is not on the list of authorized proofs of vaccination. If there is an issue with your submission, you will be instructed on how to proceed.


Getting Vaccinated

If you have not yet received a vaccine, we strongly urge you to do so as soon as possible to ensure that you have campus access when you need it. You must be fully vaccinated in order to gain campus access. This means that, if you are receiving two vaccine doses, you must receive your second dose at least two weeks before the date you will return to campus.

All members of the TC community can walk in or schedule a vaccine at Lerner Hall via the Columbia Health Patient Portal; or visit to make an appointment at other Columbia locations.  Vaccines are also available without an appointment at any of the New York City or New York State public sites. As a reminder, employees will be provided paid time off should their vaccination appointment fall during the scheduled workday.

International Students

TC recognizes that some international students may not be able to access vaccines or complete a vaccine series before arriving in New York City this fall. More details on how to be vaccinated on arrival and how the College will ensure you have access to housing and classes while you go through the vaccine process will be shared in July. If you arrive in the United States earlier, please get your vaccine at the site closest to you.


Other Campus Access Health & Safety Precautions

Teachers College remains focused on the health and well-being of our community. As reported previously, in addition to a vaccination requirement, campus access requirements, including COVID-19 PCR diagnostic testing, use of face covering, and physical distancing, remain in place at this time and will be enforced.

Masking Policy and Physical Distancing on Campus

The College expects to maintain an indoor masking policy (even if you are vaccinated) until at least early September. However, fully vaccinated individuals may remove their masks outdoors on TC’s campus, if they choose. We also are continuing to enforce physical distancing of six feet indoors. We do, however, expect that for the fall term that all classrooms will be at full occupancy. In any instance, a person’s choice to wear a mask or to physically distance must be respected, without assumptions made as to the reason for it.

As a reminder, we will continue to evaluate and may adjust our health and safety protocols and requirements based on the vaccination mandate, updated guidance from the CDC, State, City and ongoing consultation with our Columbia colleagues and public health officials.


Giving Thanks

Thank you for all of your efforts to help keep the TC community safe and healthy over the past 15 months by adhering to the Teachers College Community Health Compact. Ensuring that TC’s community is vaccinated is the next step in our commitment to each other and to keeping TC’s students, faculty, and staff safe and healthy. We appreciate your continued flexibility and willingness to support our efforts in preparation for the fall term, and look forward to beginning to resume much of TC’s vibrant campus life in a few short months.

As TC continues to plan for the fall, we are committed to keeping you informed. Look out for an invitation for a community Town Hall on Wednesday, June 23, the first in a series, to review the steps we are taking to return to campus this fall.

For more information on the vaccine requirements, visit TC’s Preparedness site. Please contact with specific questions or concerns.



Lisa Seales
Vice President for Administration 
Co-Chair, COVID-19 Working Group

Hank Perkowski
Vice President for Finance and Operations 
Co-Chair, COVID-19 Working Group