COVID Recovery Status

Weekly COVID Updates

For the week of September 20:

Previous updates can be found on the COVID Weekly Update page.

If You Feel Sick

Please do not come to campus if you are experiencing COVID-like symptoms or feeling sick. You should contact a health care provider about your symptoms before coming to campus.

Students can utilize the Student Health Center by calling 360-650-3400 to make a virtual appointment, or to speak to a nurse. Additionally, students are responsible for contacting faculty if they are unable to attend in-person classes. Student employees are also responsible for notifying their supervisor, if applicable. 

Employees should contact their primary care provider to discuss their symptoms. Additionally, employees are responsible for contacting their supervisor if they are unable to attend in-person work. 

Additional information about what to do if you're feeling sick is available on the Whatcom County Health Department website.


Campus Communications

COVID safety practices in place for Fall 2021

Western has announced the following COVID policies and procedures for Fall 2021:


Western’s indoor mask policy now states that all individuals must wear a mask or other suitable face covering indoors when other people are present and in all public and common areas. This includes spaces such as classrooms, labs, shared offices, lobbies, hallways, stairways, restrooms, elevators, and shared vehicles.

The only exception to this requirement is students inside their own room in a university residence. Additionally, people may unmask temporarily if actively eating or drinking. 

Masks are also encouraged in crowded, outdoor areas.

To learn more about masks, such as what types of masks will offer you protection, view the CDC masking website.

If you do not have a mask with you when you come to campus, single-use masks will be available at the main entrance of all academic and University Residences building. These mask stations will be in place by the start of fall quarter classes.


Western is requiring vaccinations for all students, employees, contractors, and in-person volunteers. 

To learn more about the vaccine mandate, including allowable exemptions, please reference our Vaccine Information page, or the following pages:

Information for contractors is still under development and will be posted prior to October 18, 2021.

COVID Recovery Status

The university has retired the operating levels system previously used and will implement "COVID Recovery Status" instead. The COVID Recovery Status consists of what safety precautions are in use on campus at this time, and will be updated here as the situation changes.

Precautions no longer required:

  • Physical Distancing: Physical distancing is no longer required on campus. Offices, departments, events, and the like are allowed to encourage distancing in their spaces, but there is no requirement for such.
  • Capacity Limitations: The university will not implement pandemic-related capacity limitations except as required for events with 10,000+ attendees immediately. The lifting of capacity limitations includes spaces such as classrooms, elevators, bathrooms, and offices.
  • Attestations: The university no longer requires online attestations for employees, students, or visitors. It is each individual's responsibility to self-monitor for symptoms, and stay home when feeling ill.
  • On-Site Safety Plans: The university no longer requires submission of site safety plans for approval. The COVID Support Team can provide consultation as questions about site safety arise in specific locations.


Send your questions about fall COVID policies and procedures to

Moving forward to Fall 2021

A huge welcome to all new WWU students coming to campus this fall, and to our returning students, faculty and staff, a hearty welcome back! Let’s get this started!

This site is the place to come to find out about what plans, policies and procedures are in place to ensure your safety, and the safety of the entire Western community.

Vaccinations and Vaccination Status

For Fall 2021, Western is requiring all of its students and employees to be fully vaccinated. All Western students need to provide their vaccination records to the Student Health Center via the MyWesternHealth portal before the start of fall quarter; directions and procedures for completing this can be found on the Student Health Center’s website.

Students should submit proof of vaccination or an exemption request by September 13, 2021.

Employees need to submit their vaccination records to Human Resources, and directions for how to complete this task can be found on the WWU Human Resources website.

Employees should submit proof of vaccination or an exemption request by September 27, 2021.

Volunteers who will be on campus need to submit their vaccination records to Human Resources, and directions for how to complete this task can be found on the WWU Human Resources website.

Vaccination Exemptions

Western Washington University’s vaccination policy is in place because a fully vaccinated campus is the best way to protect the health and safety of ourselves and each other. However, a vaccine exemption request process is in place for students and employees. 

Students can find directions for requesting an exemption on the Student Health Center’s website.

Employees can find directions for requesting an exemption on the WWU Human Resources website.

Please also note that unvaccinated students and employees who have completed the waiver process will need to be tested for coronavirus weekly, on campus, to continue to have an on-campus presence. The Student Health Center will send out information to all students who will be part of the testing program before the start of the school year. HR will send out information to all employees who will be part of the testing program as well. 

Also note that by the policy, if a COVID outbreak were to be declared at any point, unvaccinated students will not be allowed to have an on-campus presence even if they have approved waivers.

Questions? Send them to

Western's COVID Dashboard

Data Notes

The percentage of vaccinated students is currently based on Fall 2020 enrollment of 15,197 students across all Western campuses. As numbers for Fall 2021 enrollment become stable, we anticipate that they will be similar to Fall 2020, but as they may not be identical, the current percentage of vaccinated students may vary slightly.

The percentage of vaccinated employees is currently based on April 2021 employment of 2,271 employees. As numbers for Fall 2021 employment become stable, we anticipate that they will be similar to April 2021, but as they may not be identical, the current percentage of vaccinated employees may vary slightly.

Positive cases will begin being reported during the week of September 20, 2021.

Positivity rate is determined by the testing on campus by the Student Health Center, which will begin the week of September 20, 2021. As such, there is no data for this section yet.

Cancellations and Closures

The Viking Union and Wade King Recreation Center is open in limited capacity, please review the following sites for exact details:

Most public buildings on campus are closed to the public, including:

Whatcom County has reopened, however, certain requirements are still in place.

Keep track of the latest developments

Western is sending out regular updates through its Western Alert system. Families may opt in to Western Alerts.

Regular updates are also posted here and on Western Today's news page

If you aren't already signed up for Family Connection, click here to sign up for the monthly e-newsletter for WWU families.

Campus Tours 

The Undergraduate Office of Admissions is currently offering in-person and virtual tours. The admissions staff is also available via phone, email, and video appointments.

Viruses don't discriminate and neither should we.
Learn to be well and wash your hands poster, full text following
Full graphic text

Learn to be well at Western and wash your hands.

Help stop the spread of germs by washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds – the time it takes to sing the happy birthday song twice.

No access to soap and water? Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol) Until you can wash up.

It is vital that we support each other and act as a community, avoiding acts of discrimination and bias, and showing compassion for those affected by this disease.

Sabah Randhawa

Information Lines

Washington State Department of Health

Available 24/7

(800) 525-0127

WWU Student Health Center

For testing and individual health concerns

(360) 650-3400

WWU Coronavirus Information Line

8:00 am - 5:00 pm Monday through Friday

This page is intended to provide information about COVID-19, precautions that are being taken and prevention measures you can take, as well as being one source for information on the effects of measures various governments are taking to stem the outbreak, and to answer the most common questions about how coronavirus might impact campus operations.

This page is not intended to be all-encompassing and should not be considered to be providing medical or legal advice. In all instances, you should consult with a relevant expert for guidance specific to your circumstances.