Updated September 15, 2022, at 2:30 p.m.
COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement
- Will the vaccination requirement remain in place for 2022-23?
Yes. CWU's COVID-19 vaccination policy will remain in effect for students with in-person, distance learning, or hybrid credits. Online-only students are exempt from the policy if they can verify fully remote status. New students will still be required to upload their vaccination card into MedProctor by Monday, October 17, 2022. After that, they will have a registration hold put on their account.
At this time, CWU is not requiring boosters, but we continue to recommend them.
- Why is proof of a COVID-19 vaccination required at CWU?
CWU has made obtaining a vaccination an urgent priority because the administration believes a fully vaccinated community is the best way to protect our individual and collective health and safety. Additionally, it is only through widespread vaccinations that Central can begin to loosen or remove restrictions that have impacted social and mental well-being, and increase access to a more complete in-person campus living and learning experience for more students.
Read more about the vaccination requirement here.
- Are online-only students required to get the COVID-19 vaccine to enroll in classes?
No. CWU students who are enrolled in a 100% online program and taking only online courses are exempt from the COVID-19 vaccination policy, provided the university can verify their fully remote status. This verification process takes place for online-only students automatically up to the add/drop period for each academic quarter.
- Has this policy changed since the 2021-22 academic year?
Yes, the new policy went into effect during the 2022 spring quarter.
- What conditions must a student meet to be considered fully remote?
The student must have an “IMM” immunization hold, or no previously existing compliance status. Students who are currently in compliance with the vaccination policy do not need to be considered as their compliance status will not expire or be revoked. Students also must be:
- Enrolled in an online-only degree plan. Dual admissions to online and in-person plans will not be considered eligible.
- Registered only for online credits in their current enrollment term. Students enrolled in hybrid and distance credits are not eligible for this exemption.
- Assigned to the CWU Web Campus service location (Campus: “WEB”). Students meeting other criteria but not assigned to the WEB campus should contact the Registrar at firstname.lastname@example.org to initiate a campus change. CWU will contact students if they do not meet the “WEB” location requirement.
- What must students do to be in compliance with the vaccination requirement?
The COVID-19 vaccination requirement remains in place for 2022-23 and proof of vaccination will be required to enroll for classes (except those who are 100% online). Students who still need to submit their vaccination records can visit our Vaccination Verification page for instructions.
Read more about the vaccination requirement here.
- What are the consequences for students who do not comply with the vaccination requirement?
Students who did not comply with the vaccination requirement by October 17, 2022, will have a hold placed on their CWU accounts, preventing them from registering for future classes (online-only students are exempt). The hold will be in place until the proper vaccination documentation or approved exemption request have been processed.
- What are the vaccination requirements for student employees?
CWU student employees must submit proof of vaccination, or request an accommodation for medical or religious reasons, for COVID-19. Governor Inslee's Proclamation 20-12.5 Higher Education requires that all employees, including student employees, be vaccinated. This can be done in two ways:
- Upload your information at medproctor.com — as you’ve done with other vaccination records (MMR, smallpox, etc.), OR
- Visit an on-campus ambassador with your vaccination card and picture ID (Connection Card or state ID): cwu.edu/vaccination-verification. The process takes less than five minutes.
Please note: If you are seeking a medical or religious exemption, a separate request from your student academic exemption must be submitted for your student job. You must submit the medical accommodation request form to email@example.com or the religious accommodation request form to firstname.lastname@example.org. In consideration of your request, Human Resources and your supervisor will evaluate your work environment, job duties, and requirements for workplace safety to determine the feasibility of an accommodation to continue your student job, which may or may not be available.
- How should I submit my vaccination records if I haven't yet done so?
- What documents provide proof of vaccination?
The following types of proof are permitted:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID-19 Vaccination Record Care or photo of the card;
- Documentation of vaccination from a health care provider or electronic health record; or,
- State immunization information system record.
Students can visit the Student Health Services website and follow the instructions to upload their information through the Med+Proctor system. If you need step-by-step instructions, visit the Navigating Med+Proctor webpage.
NOTE: Personal attestation is not an acceptable form of verification of COVID-19 vaccination.
- Are those attending courses at university centers and sites required to be vaccinated?
Yes. COVID-19 vaccinations will be required of all members of the Central Washington University community — employees and students, including those who learn and work at our University Centers and Instructional Sites..
Only international students living outside the United States and high school students enrolled in CWU’s College in the High School program, and those who are 100% online are exempt from the vaccination policy.
- Where can I get more information about exemptions and submitting records?
If you have questions about exemption requests or how to submit vaccination records, call Student Health Services at 509-963-1881. You may also download the free Wildcat Care 365 app and set up an account for 24/7 telehealth services.
COVID-19 Testing & Boosters
- Where can I get tested for COVID-19?
Testing is currently available in Ellensburg and statewide, and some sites require appointments. To find a location near you, visit the Washington State Department of Health website. Testing locations in Ellensburg include Whole Health Pharmacy and Community Health of Central Washington.
- Can I get tested for COVID-19 on campus?
Yes. Testing appointments are available to students weekdays from 8:40 to 10 a.m. and from 3:20 to 5 p.m. at Student Health Services (corner of 11th and Poplar avenues). Testing is by appointment only and is limited to diagnostic (symptomatic), or close contact (exposure). Screening for travel or event attendance is not provided.
- Where can I order at-home rapid testing kits?
At home rapid COVID-19 tests are available through any of the following options:
- Washington State Department of Health:
- Order free at-home COVID-19 tests through the Federal program COVIDtests.gov.
- Purchase an at-home test at local retailers and pharmacies.
- If you have health insurance, most insurers will now directly cover or pay you back for up to 8 at-home tests per month, for each person on your plan.
- Find a test at a testing location near you.
- What actions should I take if my test comes back positive?
In the case of a positive test, CWU students — both vaccinated and unvaccinated — must follow these protocols (available on CDC website):
- Stay home for 5 days and isolate from others in your home.
- End isolation after 5 full days when you are fever-free for 24 hours (without using fever-reducing medication) and your symptoms are improving.
- If you do not develop symptoms, end isolation after 5 full days after your positive test.
- Note: Students living on campus may have the option of testing out of isolation early, depending on eligibility and testing availability.
- Continue to wear face coverings inside all facilities as well as outside when in large gatherings. N95/KN95 masks are strongly encouraged over cloth masks.
- Where can I get a COVID-19 booster shot?
Pharmacies in Ellensburg and across the state are providing booster shots by appointment. To find a location near you and set up an appointment, visit the Washington Department of Health’s vaccine locator.
Booster shots will be available at Student Health Services on Wednesdays and Thursdays, by appointment, throughout winter quarter.
- Can I get a booster shot or initial vaccination on campus?
Booster shots are available at Student Health Services on Wednesdays and Thursdays, by appointment.
- Has CWU updated its face-covering policy?
Yes. Face coverings are no longer required in any spaces on the Ellensburg campus.
University Centers and instructional sites will continue to follow the policies of their host institutions.
- Can face coverings still be worn on campus?
Yes. Masks have been shown to increase safety, and CWU encourages anyone who wants to continue wearing a mask to do so. The university asks everyone to remember that we do not know why an individual may be wearing a mask. They may be immunocompromised or may be caring for young children who cannot be vaccinated.
- Is CWU restricting travel to other countries or locations?
CWU resumed permitting education abroad and university-related international travel by students in January 2022. Until further notice, all such travel requires specific approval from the Provost, with the Office of International Studies and Programs (OISP) being the conduit. As with prior to the pandemic and per CWUP 2-10-155, all students participating in education abroad or university international travel must work through OISP and follow all required processes.
Students seeking to participate in individualized programs or travel to a destination subject to a USDOS Travel Advisory, a CDC COVID-19 Travel Health Notice and/or a CDC Standard Travel Health Notice of Level 3 or Level 4 must complete a supplemental petition in order to obtain permission to travel. For faculty-directed programs and similar group travel, this will review will take place as part of the proposal process.
Per CWUP 2-10-155, failure to follow requirements may subject students to university sanction and/or denial of credit.
- What if I wish to travel internationally on non-CWU-sponsored trips?
If your plans include traveling, particularly internationally, please understand you will do so at your own risk and may face difficulties in return travel to the U.S. and/or possible restricted access to the CWU campus. Depending on your destination, you may have to make difficult decisions to change or even cancel plans to ensure your own well-being and timely return to campus. In many countries, there may be new entry and exit control measures and even quarantines implemented with very little notice.
These actions could severely impact your plans and/or delay your return home or your ability to return to campus once you are back in the state. Please carefully weigh the risks and benefits of any international travel and view U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention information on COVID-19 to learn more.