Office of the President details COVID-19 vaccine policy

To: UCSC Community

From: Cynthia Larive Chancellor ; Lori Kletzer Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor

Dear campus community,

The University of California Office of the President is proposing a policy that would make COVID-19 vaccinations mandatory for all faculty, staff, academic appointees, and students accessing facilities at any UC campus beginning in fall quarter 2021.

The proposal is a proactive public-health measure aimed at protecting members of the UC community — and the public at large — as students and employees transition from remote work and instruction back to the UC campuses. The California State University system is considering a similar policy.

UC is announcing the proposed policy before final review by various constituent groups to provide more time for students and employees to obtain the vaccine ahead of the fall term. UCOP is still establishing how it will accept feedback on the proposed policy. In the meantime, feel free to direct comments to

According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, vaccinations against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, are a safe and effective way to prevent the virus that to date has killed well over 550,000 Americans and over 3 million people worldwide.

UCOP has created Q&A documents for both students and employees to answer questions you might have about the proposed requirement. Should the policy be implemented, a process would be put in place for faculty, staff and students to request medical exemptions. Requests for disability or religious accommodations would be handled through existing campus policies and procedures.

All Californians 16 and older are now eligible to receive the vaccine. UC already strongly encourages students and employees to voluntarily obtain a vaccination as soon as possible. If the proposed policy is adopted following the review period and collective bargaining, the requirement would go into effect this fall, pending the SARS-CoV-2 vaccination gaining full approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The vaccine is currently administered under Emergency Use Authorization.

Later this spring our campus will launch Arm in Arm, a vaccination-advocacy campaign aimed at communicating to our campus community the importance of the COVID-19 vaccine for a safe reopening of California and UC Santa Cruz.


Cynthia Larive
Chancellor, UC Santa Cruz

Lori Kletzer
Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor, UC Santa Cruz