Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Read more at umaryland.edu/return-to-campus/.
The health of the UMB community is a top priority for the Graduate School. This site will be updated with resources and communications for the Graduate School community. You are advised to check the UMB COVID-19 Site for the latest information about the outbreak, measures implemented to reduce its spread, and the impact on travel and other activities.
Frequently Asked Questions About COVID-19
This section will be updated periodically with information pertaining to current and future students, Graduate School operations and events.
Incoming and returning students who have received their vaccine may use the UMB Vaccination Form to report the details of their vaccination. This will be convenient if booster shots are issued in the future for COVID-19 variants.
Additional reporting requests will be expected closer to the start of the fall term.
Existing guidelines are still in place for requiring a test on file, including coming to campus for the first time and having possible COVID-19 exposure.
If you are required to upload a test in the future, here is what you do:
- For students who have yet to submit or are waiting on results for tests conducted prior to Oct. 5, 2020, you should upload your COVID-19 test results into CastleBranch.
- For all tests conducted on Oct. 5, 2020, or later, students should upload their test results into the secure, confidential, and HIPAA-compliant UMB SAFE on Campus (SAFE) daily symptom monitoring form that you already receive.
- If you are on a pause from the SAFE form, upload your test by using the Episodic Symptom Monitoring Report Form. For those not receiving SAFE emails, please bookmark this link in case you need to come to campus or upload a test in the future.
The move to SAFE will help to address technology challenges experienced by some students using CastleBranch. SAFE will also allow for the collection of daily symptom monitoring and COVID-19 test results in one location.
If you are required to get an additional COVID test, you will be notified by UMB or the Graduate School.
1. EXPECTATION AND EFFECTIVE DATE: All on-campus University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) students  are expected to be “fully vaccinated” against COVID-19, effective Aug. 16, 2021. Students will be considered “fully vaccinated” two weeks after receiving the second dose of a two-dose vaccine or two weeks after receiving a one-dose vaccine.
2. EXEMPTIONS: A student may be exempted from the Vaccination Protocol if: 1) the student submits documentation from the student’s health care provider indicating that the student is medically unable to be vaccinated; or 2) the student has a sincerely held religious belief, practice, or observance that does not allow for the student to be vaccinated. Students receiving an exemption from the Vaccination Protocol will be required to follow safety requirements for nonvaccinated individuals as set forth by University Health and consistent with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) guidelines. Failure to follow safety requirements set forth for nonvaccinated individuals (medical, religious, or otherwise) will subject a student to disciplinary action.
With respect specifically to religious exemptions, a religious exemption request must be written and signed by the student on a form supplied by UMB and must state that the student objects to immunization due to a “sincerely held religious belief.” The statement must address the following:
- The student must explain in their own words why they are requesting this religious exemption; and
- The student must indicate whether they are opposed to all immunizations, and if not, the religious belief that prohibits COVID-19 immunizations.
Philosophical, political, scientific, or sociological objections to immunization do not justify an exemption. Students may be required to provide additional information regarding their exemption eligibility if requested by UMB.
3. EXEMPTION PROCESS: UMB has a Vaccine Exemption Process by which students may submit requests electronically through a secure, online portal.
4. PROOF OF VACCINATION: Students have the option to either: 1) sign a waiver so that UMB receives confirmation of vaccination directly from the Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients (CRISP), which is the repository of vaccination information for the state of Maryland, for vaccinations received in Maryland; or 2) upload a copy of their CDC-approved vaccine card. Proof of being fully vaccinated must be provided by Aug. 2, 2021 (or in the case of schools with later start dates, 14 days prior to the first day of classes).
5. CONSEQUENCES: The consequences for a student not being vaccinated without having an approved medical/religious exemption are as follows:
a. No student is permitted to come onto UMB’s campus unless they have received at least one vaccine dose by Friday, Aug. 20, 2021 (or five days after the start of classes, whichever is later), and they must have received their second dose by Friday, Sept. 24, 2021 (or five weeks after the start of classes, whichever is later). Students should talk to their Student Affairs Dean or Admissions Department about a leave of absence or enrollment options if the student fails to meet these requirements. (NOTE: Students will not be provided an online curriculum where one is not already offered.)
• Consistent with other immunization requirements, failure to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination will result in a registration hold being placed on the student’s account.
b. Any student who has not provided proof of vaccination by the deadline in Paragraph 4 will be contacted by their Student Affairs Dean.
• The Student Affairs Dean will consider whether special circumstances exist that prevented the student from receiving the vaccine or filing an exemption by the timeline set forth above (e.g., insufficient time between the date of admission and the start date of classes; lack of access to vaccine; international students whose travel to the United States was delayed). Failing to file a timely application for a medical or religious exemption, on its own, is not a specific circumstance warranting particular review.
• Where extraordinary circumstances exist, as determined by the relevant Student Affairs Dean in consultation with the relevant Dean and the Provost’s Office, the student will be granted an extension of time to become vaccinated or receive an approved medical/religious exemption.
c. Students who are not yet fully vaccinated are required to follow safety requirements for nonvaccinated individuals as set forth by University Health (consistent with CDC and OSHA guidelines). Failure to follow safety requirements set forth for nonvaccinated individuals will subject a student to disciplinary action.
 An on-campus student includes any student whose courses or student-related activities are performed in whole or in part on the UMB campus, Maryland Psychiatric Research Center, Donaldson Brown Riverfront Event Center, Columbus Center, UM BioPark, and other Maryland satellite offices. This also includes UMB students who attend the Universities at Shady Grove. Students engaged in clinical or field site activities should note that external sites may have stricter vaccine rules than UMB. Being unvaccinated may impact the ability of a student to participate in activities at those external sites. Failure to complete the clinical or experiential portion of a student’s education requirements will impact their ability to graduate.
COVID-19 Vaccination Protocol: UMB Faculty and Staff
1. EXPECTATION AND EFFECTIVE DATE: All University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) on-campus employees  are expected to be “fully vaccinated” against COVID-19, effective Aug. 16, 2021. Employees will be considered “fully vaccinated” two weeks after receiving the second dose of a two-dose vaccine or two weeks after receiving a one-dose vaccine.
2. EXEMPTIONS: An employee may be exempted from the Vaccination Protocol if: 1) the employee submits documentation from the employee’s health care provider indicating that the employee is medically unable to be vaccinated or 2) the employee has a sincerely held religious belief, practice, or observance that does not allow for the employee to be vaccinated. Employees receiving an exemption from the Vaccination Protocol will be required to follow safety requirements for nonvaccinated individuals as set forth by University Health consistent with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) guidelines. Failure to follow safety requirements set forth for nonvaccinated individuals (medical, religious, or otherwise) will subject an employee to appropriate discipline.
With respect specifically to religious exemptions, a religious exemption request must be written and signed by the employee on a form supplied by UMB and must state that the employee objects to immunization due to a “sincerely held religious belief.” The statement must address the following:
• The employee must explain in their own words why they are requesting this religious exemption; and
• The employee must indicate whether they are opposed to all immunizations, and if not, the religious belief that prohibits COVID-19 immunizations.
Philosophical, political, scientific, or sociological objections to immunization do not justify an exemption. Employees may be required to provide additional information regarding their exemption eligibility if requested by UMB.
3. EXEMPTION PROCESS: UMB has a Vaccine Exemption Process by which employees may submit requests electronically through a secure and confidential online portal. Human Resource Services (HRS) will assist employees who are not able to use the electronic process.
4. PROOF OF VACCINATION: Employees have the option to either: 1) sign a waiver so that UMB receives confirmation of vaccination directly from the Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients (CRISP), which is the repository of vaccination information for the state of Maryland, for individuals vaccinated in Maryland; or 2) upload a copy of their CDC-approved vaccine card. HRS will assist any employees who request assistance to upload the vaccine card. Proof of vaccination will be kept separate from employee personnel files and shared only with individuals with a legitimate need-to-know and permitted by law.
5. CONSEQUENCES: The consequences for not being vaccinated without having an approved medical/religious exemption are as follows:
a. Such employee will be required to follow safety requirements for nonvaccinated individuals as set forth by University Health (consistent with CDC and OSHA guidelines). Failure to follow safety requirements set forth for nonvaccinated individuals will subject an employee to appropriate discipline.
b. Such employee will be given a document detailing the risks to themselves and others of not being vaccinated against COVID-19.
c. Such employee will be required to participate in an educational program discussing the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccinations and the risk of not being vaccinated.
d. Written reprimand for failure to follow this COVID-19 Vaccination Protocol will be placed in the employee’s personnel file (but will be expunged and not used in any further/progressive discipline upon proof of vaccination).
e. Such staff employee will receive a “Below Standards” rating on the Safety section of next year’s Performance Development Program (PDP) evaluation (but can be avoided upon proof of vaccination). Such faculty employee will receive a “Below Standards” notation in a safety category of the faculty member’s comparable annual review (but can be avoided upon proof of vaccination).
f. Such employee may not be approved for the discretionary programs of telework and will not be approved for University-sponsored travel including grant-funded travel (but both may be approved upon proof of vaccination).
NOTE: With the exception of (a), the above consequences will not apply to an employee who has received an exemption to the Vaccination Protocol.
 An on-campus employee includes any employee whose job is performed in whole or in part on the UMB campus, Maryland Psychiatric Research Center, Donaldson Brown Riverfront Event Center, Columbus Center, UM BioPark, and other Maryland satellite offices. This also includes UMB employees whose jobs are performed at the Universities at Shady Grove.
The Student Emergency Fund (SEF) was established to support students who have unexpected emergency expenses, particularly during the COVID-19 crisis, such as illness, medical emergency, or the need for housing, food or transportation. I am proud to say that in the face of these challenges, the Graduate School has pulled together and is meeting each and every challenge with grit and determination.
We encourage you to apply by filling out the online application link listed below and provide documentation of the financial hardship that you are experiencing.
Please note that the SEF awards cannot be used to cover any of the following expenses:
- Tuition, lab fees, health insurance
- Parking tickets and other university-imposed fines
- Costs for entertainment, recreation, non-emergency travel
Request will be reviewed on a case by case basis to determine applicants’ eligibility and an interview may be required (on-line or via phone call) with a representative from the Graduate School as well.
Recognizing that our students’ lives have been significantly disrupted by COVID-19, we have developed a option in which students will be able to opt-in to Pass/Fail grading on a course-by-course basis with permission of their Graduate Program Director (GPD), course director and the Graduate School.
The deadline to request Pass/Fail grading is April 24th.
Review the guidelines for the Pass/Fail Grading Option.
To the fullest extent possible, admissions, enrollment and registration, grade acquisition & posting, and student progression-related, and degree certification activities and functions will continue through the mandatory telework time period. Some activities and processes may slow down and take longer to complete - and there will be postal mail delays - but otherwise we hope and expect to provide our full, normal support.
The Graduate School fully supports your successful completion of your degree program including your upcoming defense.
- All defending students will establish a method for videoconferencing (examples include WebEx, Zoom or Skype) the open presentation portion of the defense and defense exam.
- All committee members may participate remotely in defenses.
- If the conferencing technology fails and the examiner can not fully participate, the committee may fail to reach its quorum. In this case, the examination must be rescheduled.
- The Report of Examining Committee will be sent to the Graduate School Dean's Representative in advance of the defense.
- All committee members are encourage to sign the document electronically.
- Student will submit the form to the Graduate School within 48 hours.
Recent recommendations and policies regarding COVID-19 require modifications to previously established Procedures for Examination of the Master's Thesis and Procedures for Examination of the Doctoral Dissertation.
ETS has introduced a solution for students who have been impacted by the coronavirus to take the TOEFL iBT® test and the GRE® General Test at home until test centers can reopen. TOEFL® testing is scheduled to begin on March 26, and GRE testing will begin on March 27.
Testing will be conducted through the use of live remote proctoring serviced by ProctorU®. This high-touch, real-time human monitoring of test sessions limits the number of seats available. Students can register beginning today in the following countries:
- United States
- Hong Kong (China)
- Macau (China)
Annoucements and Letters to the UMB Community
- July 26, 2021 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Available for UMB
- July 22, 2021 Take Your Leave: Time Away from Work Offers Mental and Physical Health Benefits
- July 16, 2021 New University Podcast Launches: Keep Your Finger on ‘The UMB Pulse’
- July 15, 2021 Supervisors Open Forum: Vaccination Q&A To Be Held July 21
- July 14, 2021 COVID-19 Brain Study Seeks Participants
- July 7, 2021 COVID-19 Vaccines Hybrid Town Hall
- July 1, 2021 New Guidance on Research Activities Effective June 21, 2021
- June 29, 2021 Final Dates for UMB Vaccination Clinic
- June 22, 2021 Zoom Cloud Storage Retention
- June 17, 2021 Letter: UMB Face Covering and Physical Distancing Requirements for Vaccinated and Unvaccinated Students, Faculty, and Staff
- June 16, 2021 UMB Dining Options Summer 2021 Update
- June 9, 2021 Fully Vaccinated? You Might Be Exempt from SAFE on Campus
- June 8, 2021 June 19 Is Last Day to Get First Dose at UMB Vaccination Clinic
- May 26. 2021 Letter: Next Week's Return to Campus: Mask Requirements, Elevator Usage, and Lunch Rooms
- May 21, 2021 International Students and Scholars Return to Campus Guidance
- May 21, 2021 Walk-Up COVID-19 Vaccinations at UMB
- May 18, 2021 Letter: Vaccination Timeline and Appointments Available for Family and Friends
- May 18, 2021 UMB COVID-19 Management Portal
- May 14, 2021 Pop-Up Pantry Delivery
- May 12, 2021 Mayor Brandon M. Scott Eases COVID-19 Restrictions
- May 12, 2021 Walk-Up COVID-19 Vaccinations at UMB
- May 12, 2021 If I’ve already had COVID-19 and recovered, do I still need to get vaccinated?
- May 6, 2021 Letter: Return to Campus Update: May 6, 2021
- May 6, 2021 Lyft On-Demand Shuttle and Lyft Ride Smart at UMB
- May 5, 2021 Letter: Vaccination Incentive
- May 3, 2021 Return to Campus - Parking Updates
- April 26, 2021 ‘University Days’ Provides USM Students, Employees Access to Mass Vaccination Sites
- April 23, 2021 University Days at Greenbelt Mass Vaccination Site
- April 23, 2021 University System of Maryland Vaccination Mandate
- April 23, 2021 USM Chancellor Jay A. Perman Issues COVID Vaccination Mandate for USM Students, Faculty, and Staff
- April 23, 2021 UMB Faculty and Staff Can Share COVID-19 Testing, Vaccination Information in One Click
- April 22, 2021 No Arm Left Behind: State of Maryland Continues to Expand Walk-Up, No-Appointment Vaccinations
- April 22, 2021 UMB Vaccination Clinic Now Accepting Students Learning in Baltimore City
- April 14, 2021 COVID-19 vaccines available in Baltimore for Native Americans in D.C., Maryland, Virginia
- April 13, 2021 Food for Our Front Lines Providing Free Meals for Second Year
- April 6, 2021 Negative COVID-19 Test No Longer Required When Returning to Campus for First Time
- March 31, 2021 Letter: Return to Campus Plan
- March 25, 2021 Vaccine Available Through UMB
- March 24, 2021 Letter: Phase 3: Research Update
- March 24, 2021 Letter: Using Your Earned Time Off
- March 22, 2021 Survey on UMB Staff Experiences During COVID-19
- March 22, 2021 University System Publishes Terms of Carryover Leave Exception
- March 19, 2021 Standing Against Asian American and Pacific Islander Hate
- March 19, 2021 UMB Community Encouraged to Register for Vaccine Where Available
- March 19, 2021 Student Volunteer Opportunities at UMB Vaccination Clinic, Mass Vaccination Sites
- March 18, 2021 Letter of Support & Call to Action
- March 12, 2021 Letter: COVID-19 Testing Policy Update
- March 12, 2021 Pop-up Pantry at SMC Campus Center Loading Dock
- March 12, 2021 Letter: COVID-19 One Year Later
- March 3. 2021 Should I Get The Shot? A Community Discussion
- March 3, 2021 Letter: UMB Housing Update for Summer and Fall 2021
- March 2, 2021 Letter: Statement of Intent for Summer and Fall Semester
- February 26, 2021 Letter: Vaccine Doses Now Available For UMB
- February 26, 2021 Changes to On-Campus COVID Testing Appointment
- February 25, 2021 Letter: Register Now: Should I Get the Shot? A Community Conversation on March 10
- February 25, 2021 Letter: UMB Safe Ride Is Back in Service on March 1
- February 24, 2021 UMB Phase 1A Students, Employees To Be Randomly Selected For Vaccine
- February 19, 2021 Letter: Mandatory 2021 Spring Break COVID-19 Testing Requirement
- February 18, 2021 Letter: COVID-19 Reminders and UMB Student Affairs Updates
- February 4, 2021 UMB COVID-19 Vaccination Updates
- January 28, 2021 Letter: UMB COVID-19 Updates: Telework, Travel, Testing, Support, and Vaccinations
- January 11, 2021 Letter: Vaccination Priority Form
- January 4, 2021 Letter: Vaccination Registration
- December 18, 2020 This Week In COVID-19 Vaccine News | Dec. 18
- December 18, 2020 Letter: Maryland Travel and Testing Update
- December 17, 2020 Submit Your COVID-19 Vaccines Questions
- December 17, 2020 Tuition and Fees for Spring 2021 Semester
- December 16, 2020 Telework Agreement Form FAQs
- December 15, 2020 UMB Weather Emergencies
- December 11, 2020 Holiday Travel Guidance
- December 8, 2020 Letter: Take Pride in UMB: Vaccine News
- December 4, 2020 Central Administration Equipment Sign-out Form
- December 3, 2020 Join the ‘Fight COVID-19 in One Click’ Campaign
- December 1, 2020 Call the UMB COVID-19 Hotline
- November 20, 2020 UMB Partners with Lyft on Two On-Demand Ride Programs
- November 19, 2020 Thanksgiving Holiday Travel Guidance
- November 12, 2020 Encouraging the Use of MD COVID Alert
- November 11, 2020 Reminder about Coronavirus Vigilance and Telework
- November 2, 2020 UMB IT Resource Orientation
- November 2, 2020 On-site Computer Restarts and Shut Downs
- October 30, 2020 Staff Senate Hosts Virtual Thanksgiving Food Drive
- October 28, 2020 Student Parking at UMB during the COVID-19 Pandemic
- October 26, 2020 For In-Person Gatherings, Please Limit Your Bubble
- October 22, 2020 Letter regarding Coronavirus Vigilance and the Holidays
- October 16, 2020 Feel Sick? Make the Call
- October 16, 2020 Together, We Can Stop The Spread
- October 9, 2020 Fall Semester 2020 URecFit Fee Update
- October 8, 2020 Participate in COVID-19 Vaccine Clinical Trials
- October 8, 2020 Letter Regarding Spring Semester 2021
- September 28, 2020 Lexington Street Garage Daily Rates Change
- September 23, 2020 ‘Virtual Blue Bins’ Are Open for Collecting Donations
- September 23, 2020 Flu Shot Clinic Sponsored by HS/HSL and School of Pharmacy
- September 18, 2020 Free Pediatric Immunizations For Baltimore Families
- September 17, 2020 Licenses Available For Webex With Closed Captions & Live Transcriptions
- September 16, 2020 Starbucks, Market at UMB Reopens in SMC Campus Center
- September 16, 2020 Central Payroll Bureau Will Not Participate in Payroll Tax Deferral
- September 9, 2020 HS/HSL To Reopen Sept. 14
- September 3, 2020 Contract Considerations During COVID-19
- September 3, 2020 Letter regarding Post-Labor Day testing
- August 27, 2020 Back-to-School Campus Safety
- May 29, 2020 Chancellor's Letter and Episodic Telework Reminder
- May 21, 2020 Travel Guidance
- May 20, 2020 Return to Normal Pay Practices
- May 19, 2020 UMB Research Phased Plan
- May 15, 2020 Letter regarding UMB Recovery Framework
- May 15, 2020 UMB Recovery Framework
- April 27, 2020 UMSON Offers Early-Exit Option to Students to Bolster Nursing Workforce During Pandemic
- April 24, 2020 COVID-19 General Updates
- April 16, 2020 Letter regarding communications survey
- April 14, 2020 Letter from Dean Reece to FPI Patients
- April 14, 2020 Letter to Graduating Students
- April 9, 2020 Update to Episodic Teleworking
- April 6, 2020 UMB Guidance on the Use of Non-Medical Cloth Face Coverings
- April 3, 2020 With Gratitude to the UMB Community
- April 3, 2020 Student Refunds and Bankmobile
- March 31, 2020 Student Refunds Spring 2020
- March 30, 2020 Extension of Episodic Telework
- March 28, 2020 A message to graduating students from Dr. Jarrell
- March 23, 2020 Severe Research Restrictions take effect on Monday at 5 p.m.
- March 23, 2020 Guidance on research administration expenses on sponsored projects
- March 23, 2020 A video message from Dr. Jarrell
- March 21, 2020 A member of the UMB community has tested positive for COVID-19
- March 20, 2020 Clarification of Guidelines for Designation of Laboratory Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Fellows
- March 19, 2020 Continuation of virtual learning, commencement, and refund of fees
- March 19, 2020 New UMB Clinical Placement Guidelines
- March 18, 2020 COVID-19 Research Guidelines
- March 12, 2020 Step 2 UMB/UMMS Policies and Guidance Regarding COVID-19
- March 12, 2020 New UMB Telework Policy
- March 12, 2020 Preventing Spread of COVID-19 in Research and Scholarship
- March 10, 2020 UMB/UMMS Policies and Guidance Regarding COVID-19
- July 31, 2020 Research Stage 2 Delayed
- July 31, 2020 Letter regarding COVID-19 Testing for Employees and Students Returning to Campus
- July 30, 2020 Tuition & Fees for the Fall 2020 Semester
- July 28, 2020 Letter regarding Updated Telework Policy
- July 23, 2020 UMB Safe in the Workplace Staff Training
- July 23, 2020 UMB Safe in the Workplace Faculty Training
- July 15, 2020 Letter Regarding Reversal of ICE Policy on International Students
- July 14, 2020 Letter regarding Stage 1 of Clinical and Community-Based Human Subjects Research
- July 14, 2020 Letter regarding updated guidance on out-of-state travel and testing
- July 11, 2020 Letter Regarding Research Update: Phase 2
- July 10, 2020 COVID-19 Recovery website and Focus Area videos
- July 9, 2020 Letter Regarding International Students Update
- July 4, 2020 Guidance on Out of State Travel
- June 30, 2020 University Recovery Update
- June 25, 2020 UMB Phased Research Plan
- June 24, 2020 Penn and Pearl Reopening
- June 22, 2020 Thank You For Supporting UMB's Front Line Employees
- June 17, 2020 Facilities and Operations Responds to COVID-19
- June 15, 2020 University Recovery Update
- June 12, 2020 UMB Housing at Fayette Square and Pascault Row Apartments PDF
- June 3, 2020 USM Guidance on Employees at High Risk for COVID-19 Complications
- June 3, 2020 Research Update
- August 25, 2020 Research Update: Phase 2 Initiation
- August 24, 2020 Letter From Dr. Jarrell: Welcome Back
- August 17, 2020 Non-USPS Package Information
- August 14, 2020 SMC Campus Center Fall 2020 Reopening
- August 13, 2020 COVID-19 Testing Guidance Letter
- August 10, 2020 COVID-19 Safe on Campus Student Training
- August 10, 2020 Letter regarding SAFE on Campus Symptom Monitoring
- August 4, 2020 Updates and Reminders Regarding Phase 2 of Research Activities
- August 4, 2020 UM shuttle Suspended for Fall Semester
- August 3, 2020 Letter regarding UMB Updated Face Covering Policy
Updated July 28, 2021 at 3:00 p.m.
Photo Courtesy: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention