COVID-19 Vaccination Frequently Asked Questions

International & Off-Campus Studies

and COVID-19 Vaccine

Check back frequently for any updates to the vaccination FAQ!

Do I need to be vaccinated for COVID-19 before I go off campus in the U.S. or abroad?
Yes, because of the many restrictions facing travelers, St. Olaf has made the decision to require that all participants (faculty, staff, students and any accompanying travelers) be vaccinated and boosted before participating in any IOS program.  On campus exemptions that have been granted on medical or religious grounds do not extend to off-campus study – all participants must be vaccinated and boosted.

Does it matter which vaccine I receive?
Students in the U.S. will likely be inoculated with Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson, but other vaccines are used in other countries.   Any COVID vaccine is accepted by St. Olaf.  Note, however, that other countries may restrict which vaccines meet their requirements.  It may be best for students, whenever possible, to be vaccinated in the U.S.

How do I find a vaccine?

If you are currently residing in the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention can link to local health departments on its website. You can search by the zipcode where you are living to access local information. There are often vaccinations available at local pharmacies and medical facilities as well as local community clinics for the general public. Different locations may have different requirements – insurance, citizenship and identification may not be needed.

Do I need to have proof of a COVID vaccine before the start of the program?
Yes, you will need to provide proof of vaccination and booster shot (e.g., vaccination report, card, or medical record).  IOS will provide a place to upload this documentation in your online application in StudioAbroad. Log in at AFTER you have been accepted to study off-campus. To minimize the risk of disruption to travel or participation in events while on the IOS program, you must plan to carry proof of vaccination with you at all times while off campus.

Why is St. Olaf requiring all students who are attending an off-campus studies program to be vaccinated?
Airlines and countries may require proof of COVID-19 vaccine to allow travel or entry.  Some hotels and venues (such as museums, theaters, etc.) may require proof of a COVID vaccine. Further, vaccination may enable you to avoid a period of quarantine. Rules can change without warning. We want you to be able to travel off-campus and to participate in all parts of the program. Further, vaccinated travelers help prevent further straining health care resources better reserved for local populations, especially in situations where COVID transmission remains high and vaccination may not yet be widely available for the local community.

What is the deadline to submit proof of vaccination?
Fall and Academic Year programs – July 1
Interim and Spring programs – October 1
Summer programs – March 1

Given the time it takes between vaccination shots and booster shots, participants should plan at least 6 months in advance of these deadlines.

Who should I contact if I have questions?