From the earliest days of the onset of the COVID-19 global pandemic in February 2020, the guiding principle for decision-making at the University has been to follow local, state, and federal public health guidelines.
On Sunday, February 27, New York State Governor Kathy Hochul announced an end to the statewide indoor mask mandate in schools effective Wednesday, March 2. Shortly after that statewide policy update, New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced that he plans to lift the mask order for New York City schools and also announced that beginning Monday, March 7, the city’s Key2NYC requirement that businesses confirm vaccination status for indoor dining, indoor fitness, and indoor entertainment will be lifted. These decisions follow new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention saying most people do not need to wear face coverings in indoor public settings unless there is a high level of severe disease. With protection from immunity rising—both from vaccination and infection—the overall risk of severe COVID-19 is now generally lower.
Effective Monday, March 7 masks are no longer required anywhere at St. John’s University either for indoor or outdoor campus activities.
People may still choose to wear masks at any time. Anyone on campus or visiting campus is welcome to wear a mask anywhere, if they feel safer doing so, and those personal and individual decisions demand our mutual respect and support. We need to remember that we have members of our community who feel vulnerable because of their own health conditions or those of their family.
If you have symptoms of COVID-19 or have tested positive for COVID-19, you should not come to campus. Please complete the COVID-19 Notification Form and consult with a health-care provider. If you are exposed to a person with COVID-19, you are required to wear a mask at all times when around others, and you need to be tested 5 days after the exposure.
It is important that we make decisions in the collective interests of the greater campus community following local, state, and federal public health guidelines and considering conditions on campus and in our surrounding communities. All of our COVID-19 planning and protocols are subject to the latest public health guidelines and may be modified as circumstances change.
Having our employees and students fully vaccinated and boosted enable us to safely engage in more robust campus events, programs, and activities. Together, we have worked as a community to confront the many unexpected and enduring challenges presented to us by the pandemic. The University’s preparedness and responses for living, learning, and working during the pandemic helped to form a stronger, nimbler St. John’s—a community better able to maintain our business operations and to serve our students in a safe and healthy environment.
Since our founding in 1870, St. John’s University has endured through periods of great adversity and emerged from these challenges stronger while remaining faithful to our Catholic and Vincentian mission. We pray for all those impacted by the far-reach of the COVID-19 pandemic. The University’s successful response to the pandemic is measured by small but meaningful contributions made by so many members of the St. John’s community. We appreciate your cooperation and compliance regarding all our campus safety protocols as, with great anticipation, we look forward to the return of our students for the duration of the Spring 2022 semester.