University of Richmond Welcomes Students to Campus for 2021-22 Academic Year With Health and Safety Protocols in Place

August 18, 2021

Editor's Note: The University's mask policy was updated Aug. 19 after this release was posted. Please see this message for the latest information about masks on campus.

UNIVERSITY OF RICHMOND — The University of Richmond is kicking off in-person, residential educational experience for the 2021–22 academic year. Classes begin Aug. 23. New and returning students have been arriving to campus for the past several days.

As it has from the beginning of the pandemic, the University, which also provided in-person education during the entire 2020–21 academic year, has established numerous COVID-19 health and safety protocols and will adjust, as needed, to align with prevailing conditions.

COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement
The University announced in June that students, faculty, and staff are required to be fully vaccinated as soon as one of the vaccines is granted full FDA approval, subject to exemptions. The University has strongly encouraged the COVID-19 vaccine since it became widely available. Currently, 96% of students have reported their vaccination status, 93% of whom are fully vaccinated. 98% of faculty and staff have reported their vaccination status, 92% of whom are fully vaccinated.

Masks on Campus
Under the University’s mask policy, anyone who is not fully vaccinated must wear a mask on campus indoors and outdoors when six feet of physical distancing is not possible. All members of the community are encouraged and welcome to wear a mask if they choose. Masks are also required for everyone regardless of vaccination status in the following settings:

  • In the dining hall, except when seated;
  • At any indoor meeting or event where the attendance is 250 or above, and some events with attendance over 100 may require masking;
  • In health care settings, including the Student Health Center;
  • On public transportation, including University shuttles; and
  • When students are going off campus to indoor public buildings for extra-curricular or co-curricular activities, including community-based learning and engagement with K-12 schools.

Faculty or staff teaching during the fall semester may require masks in their classroom or lab, and faculty or staff meeting with students or colleagues in private offices or small conference rooms may ask the attendees to wear a mask.

Additional key components of the fall 2021 response plan include:

  • Students who are not fully vaccinated must participate in arrival and weekly prevalence testing.
  • The University will return to nearly 100% fully in-person classes and will not offer remote study during the 2021­–22 academic year. The exception is certain classes in the School of Professional & Continuing Studies, which were previously conducted online.
  • The University is opening in the Lime Stage of its Physical Distancing Framework.

More information about the University’s COVID-19 response plans is available at