Pomona's Mask Policy (6/28/21)

Dear Pomona faculty and staff

California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) recently revised workplace mask guidance for the state, setting new and different rules for people who are and people who are not vaccinated. One key aspect requires people who have not been vaccinated to wear a mask when indoors in proximity to others.

Effective today, Pomona College will follow this guidance for members of our community. 

Students, faculty and staff who have registered with the College that they have received the COVID-19 vaccine and are two weeks past the second dose for the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, (or a single dose for Johnson & Johnson), no longer need to wear masks either indoors or outdoors, even when in proximity to others.

Members of our community who are not fully vaccinated or who have not registered their vaccination with the College must continue to wear masks indoors when with others, but they do not have to wear a mask outdoors. At Pomona, members of our community who are not vaccinated must also be routinely tested for COVID-19 if they are working or living on campus.

The CDC advises that unvaccinated individuals should wear masks outdoors at large events or gatherings. At Pomona, we will determine whether masks are required for larger gatherings on a case by case basis and communicate event-specific guidelines accordingly.

Of course, while not required, vaccinated individuals can choose to wear a mask at any time. It is therefore important to remember that just because a colleague is wearing a mask does not necessarily mean they have not received the vaccine.

The best way to protect yourself and those around you from COVID-19 is to get vaccinated. Cal/OSHA’s revised masking guidance provides confirmation that vaccines are effective against infection and transmission of the virus to others. If you need help in identifying available vaccine locations, please contact nurse Stephanie.Garcia-Barragan@pomona.edu.

As a reminder, given the importance of vaccines to the health of our community, we plan to mandate the vaccine for all faculty and staff as a condition of employment once the FDA provides full authorization to one of the COVID-19 vaccines.  We will honor approved and documented exceptions for valid medical reasons and sincerely held religious beliefs. We will provide more guidance on the exemption process in the coming weeks.  Vaccination for students has already been mandated and they have received that information.

To be compliant with Cal/OSHA’s guidance, all faculty and staff should upload your vaccine card as soon as possible but not later than July 15.  If you do not upload your vaccine information, you will be considered unvaccinated and will be required to wear a mask and be routinely tested for COVID-19 once you return to work on campus on or before Monday, Aug. 2.

Finally, we are still required to screen faculty and staff who come to campus for any reason for COVID-19 symptoms. If you are coming to campus, please fill out the daily health check each day before you arrive on campus.

Thank you.


Rob Goldberg
VP, COO, and Treasurer

Brenda Rushforth
AVP, Human Resources and Chief Human Resources Officer