July 27, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

Today the CSU has taken an important step forward to promote the health and safety of our campus community with an announcement by Chancellor Castro that the CSU will mandate vaccines for faculty, staff, and students.

Just last week, I hosted a series of Town Hall Meetings to share the latest information available on Fall repopulation planning. At the time, what I said in those Town Halls was true – that the CSU would not be following the UC system’s lead in requiring the vaccine. However, today, this is no longer the case. All CSU employees and students will be required to be vaccinated or have an approved medical or religious exemption on file and submit to routine surveillance testing to physically access any CSU campus or affiliated locations. This decision comes on the heels of Governor Newsom’s July 26, 2021 mandate that all employees of the State of California will be required to show proof of vaccination or be tested regularly.

At this time, we are working internally to identify a specific implementation date for CSUCI that will 1) fall in line with the CSU requirements, 2) allow for the campus to come into full compliance with new policy as soon as possible, and 3) provide a reasonable time frame for employees and students to become vaccinated or request an exemption, ideally on a more aggressive timeline than the CSU deadline of Sept. 30.

This about-face news from where we were just last week to today is, ultimately, a good thing. This systemwide stance on the need for us to support our own and each other’s well-being by getting vaccinated is one that I have heard our campus call for repeatedly. It is the right call for CSU leadership to make. As we discussed last week in the Town Halls, the CSU does not have the same constitutional autonomy that the UC enjoys; however, based on the current circumstances including the spread of the virus and variants, among other factors, CSU has determined it has the legal support to require the vaccine prior to full FDA approval in order for us to continue the plan to resume in-person instruction this fall semester.

While this new vaccination requirement can be implemented immediately for non-represented employees and students, we are awaiting more clarification on how this may impact current negotiations with our various unions, both at the system and individual campus levels. As such, in the immediate term, CSUCI will stay the course in full alignment with Cal/OSHA and Public Health requirements and recommendations, and concurrently continue with progress underway regarding our individual campus-level negotiations towards vaccination certification or surveillance testing for all employees. In doing so, we will be in position for a smooth transition once the updated systemwide policy requiring vaccination is formally approved and adopted by all bargaining units.

I fully understand that these events have undoubtedly raised as many questions as they have answered. As such, we will be providing instructions and more detailed information on vaccine certification and clinics, the exemption process, workspace assessments and modifications, testing, and more later this week. In addition, we will be hosting additional Town Halls next week – I encourage all of you to register and attend one or both of the sessions. (Note: The University encourages persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities. If you anticipate needing any kind of accommodation, or have questions about access, please contact the Title IX office as soon as possible at: titleix@csuci.edu).  

  • Aug. 4 at 1 p.m.
  • Aug. 6 at 1 p.m.

Please take a moment to visit the Fall 2021 Semester webpage that includes updates for Vaccine Information, FAQs, Welcome Activities, Campus Services & Resources, Campus Communication, Campus Cases & Reporting COVID-19, and the recently updated and improved goCI app.

If you have questions about any of the above or on a topic not addressed here, please contact your supervisor. You are also invited to write to csuci.news@csuci.edu and your questions will be directed to the appropriate area for a response.

Richard Yao, Ph.D.
Interim President

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