Updated August 23, 2021While the plans for Summer 2021 and Fall 2021 are still being finalized, we have provided the answers to frequently asked questions to help keep you up to date. As plans for the upcoming terms become available, they will be updated here.

Taking Classes in Fall 2021

Yes. Students may start face-to-face classes on August 23, 2021 while working on their vaccination status.  You must complete your vaccination shot series by September 13, 2021, to be considered fully vaccinated. You’ll have until September 30th to submit proof.  

No. If you are not planning to take face-to-face courses, you are not required to submit proof of vaccination.

We’re trying to balance the need to safeguard the  public health of our community with our mission of educating students. We recognize the inconvenience this is causing for our students and your families, and we’re working to address that. Moving courses online makes sure we can maintain academic progress as the public health environment continues to change.

You will receive an email notification.  Updates are also provided in LancerPoint under your course schedule.

If you have paid your fees, but dropped from all or part of your enrollment by the refund deadline (see the Academic Calendar for the deadline for the current semester) you will be eligible for a full refund of the class fees/tuition.  If you were dropped from courses for not providing proof of vaccinations by the deadline, you will not receive a refund.

In-person events and services will be available to vaccinated students. Eligible Students who are Exempt from vaccination will be required to follow Other Safety Measures as determined by the college during their entire time at any PCC Location. Students who have not submitted proof of vaccination or documentation of an allowable religious or medical Exemption will not be permitted to be Physically Present on any PCC Location for an extended period of time. 

For Instructors in the Classroom

After Sept. 30, 2021, any student present on campus should be assumed to meet the requirements of PCC’s vaccination program. All employees and students on campus after Sept. 30 will have proven their vaccination or they will an approved exemption supported by other health measures.

Students and employees will have a digital badge in LancerPoint that will demonstrate their permission to be on campus. If there is a need to know someone’s access status, simply ask to see their digital badge and avoid asking delicate questions about vaccinations, medical conditions, or religious preferences. A suggestion is to ask all students in a class to show their badge, rather than singling out particular individuals or groups in a public way.

If a student or colleague tells you that they know someone with new symptoms, a positive COVID test, or close contact with a COVID case, refer that person to the COVID Support Form. These forms bring relevant information to Student Health Services or Human Resources, depending on the circumstances of the case. These offices will consult with the student or employee, inform them of any necessary steps, and consult with other college personnel to implement a plan of recovery.

Student Health Services and Human Resources use the platform Virtru to send encrypted messages that contain personal health information of our students or employees. Please follow the steps in the email to access the encrypted message.

This is at the discretion of the instructor. The daily symptom survey collects statements of health status from everyone who comes to campus. Those who are cleared to come to campus receive a green check mark in an email, and these results are intended to be available upon request.

The college will balance the need to maintain public health and the educational environment for our students. Responses to COVID cases will change depending on the circumstances of any particular occurrence. If you have questions, please contact your division dean or the Office of Instruction.

Students and employees may receive exemptions from PCC’s vaccination requirement if they demonstrate a valid medical or religious reason to be unvaccinated. Following the submission of a completed exemption form, the documentation is reviewed by a committee of PCC staff with relevant knowledge of the exemption, who then make a determination of the validity of the claim and communicate it to the submitter. The committee’s decisions are final. The process can take as long as two weeks, depending on the volume of submissions. Questions and other concerns should be addressed to healthupdates@pasadena.edu

Vaccine Requirements & Exemptions

No.  (unless specified under your re-entry procedures) People are considered fully vaccinated:  

  • Two weeks after their second dose series (such as Pfizer or Moderna) or 
  • Two weeks after a single dose vaccine (such as Johnson and Johnsons, Janssen vaccine)  

Therefore, in order to be fully vaccinated, you must complete your vaccination series by September 13, 2021.  You have until September 30th to submit proof. 

No. Unvaccinated students, taking credit or noncredit classes, may enroll in online courses and receive non-instructional (student services, library, tutoring) services through remote means. In addition, students demonstrating an approved Exemption to vaccination may be Physically Present on campus, provided they follow health guidelines to keep our community safe which includes wearing masks and routine Covid-19 testing.  Exemptions forms can be accessed and submitted here.

By September 30, 2021, all PCC students taking a face-to-face course will need to provide proof of an accepted COVID-19 vaccination through the College's submission process, or a qualifying exemption based on medical or religious grounds as a condition for face-to-face class enrollment. 

Students accessing on campus services or study space will need to provide proof of an accepted COVID-19 vaccination through the College's submission process, or a qualifying exemption based on medical or religious grounds, or proof of a negative COVID-19 test within the last 24 hours as a condition for campus access. Free COVID-19 testing is in the Circadian room of our Campus Center and offered daily.  

In limited circumstances, such as picking up a loaner laptop or hotspot, quick transactions in Student Services or the Library. During your visit, you must follow campus guidelines such as masking, social distancing, completing the symptom checker, and receiving a rapid Covid-19 test. A department may ask for Name and Student ID to confirm campus access and inform you of the steps needed in order to follow through with the transaction.  

People are considered fully vaccinated:

  • Two weeks after their second dose series (such as Pfizer or Moderna) or
  • Two weeks after a single dose vaccine (such as Johnson and Johnsons, Janssen vaccine) 

Therefore, in order to be fully vaccinated, you have to complete your vaccination series by September 13, 2021.  You have until September 30th to submit proof.

No. This is intended to be a permanent part of PCC’s efforts to ensure the safety and well-being of our employees, students, and community.

Vaccination records will be reviewed and verified by a medical provider.  Once verified, a message will be sent to your PCC assigned email account that your vaccination submission has been verified and recorded.  Please allow for 7-10 working days for processing.  Follow-up questions can be sent to healthupdates@pasadena.edu 

Individuals covered by this policy who seek an exception (on medical, disability, or religious grounds) or deferral (during pregnancy) must complete the request form and submit using the following links:

Exemption forms will be reviewed as quickly as possible. Once a decision is rendered, a message will be sent to your PCC assigned email account with that information. If approved, you will be enrolled in a weekly Covid-19 testing requirement as a condition of the exemption and campus safety protocols. Follow-up questions can be sent to healthupdates@pasadena.edu

Depending on your individual health background, you may be eligible for a temporary Exemption on medical grounds for up to 90 days following your diagnosis or certain treatments. According to the US Food and Drug Administration, however, “a positive result from an antibody test does not mean you have a specific amount of immunity or protection from SARS-CoV-2 infection … Currently authorized SARS-CoV-2 antibody tests are not validated to evaluate specific immunity or protection from SARS-CoV-2 infection.” For this reason, individuals who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or had an antibody test are not permanently exempt from vaccination.  Medical exemption request forms can be accessed and submitted here:

Yes. The vaccine requirement or Exemption is applicable to concurrently or dual enrolled students if the course requires Physical Presence at a PCC Location.

Yes. PCC has a similar vaccine program for employees and service providers. These individuals are registered through DSP&S with Human Resources and they will be contacted with instructions to demonstrate vaccination status.  

Pregnant women are eligible for a Deferral throughout their pregnancy or (if later) when they return to work or instruction, as applicable. Pregnant women may also be eligible for a disability accommodation. Deferral forms can be accessed here:

Access to Campus

PCC’s top priority is the health and safety of all members of our community. Prior to the Effective Date, the college will encourage COVID-19 vaccination. Once the Effective Date has passed, any Eligible Student or Employee who has not submitted proof of full vaccination or an approved Exemption will be required to follow the District’s health and safety protocols.  

Vaccination-related information is confidential.  The District will not disclose vaccine status of any persons except on a need-to-know basis.

PCC’s top priority is the health and safety of all members of our community. Prior to the Effective Date, the college will encourage COVID-19 vaccination. Once the Effective Date has passed, any Eligible Student or Employee who has not submitted proof of full vaccination or an approved Exemption will be required to follow the District’s health and safety protocols.  

The health and safety of our educational environment depend on every individual doing their part for our collective success. Although we expect most members of our community to respect their colleagues and classmates by adhering to appropriate guidelines, we must prepare for those who choose to do otherwise.

Speaking generally, disputes over COVID-19 guidelines should be resolved between individuals wherever possible, and brought to a division dean, supervisor or vice president, the Office of Student Life, or the Office of Academic Affairs as necessary using existing dispute-resolution channels.

Disputes that intersect with any protection mandated by law, policy, or employment agreement must be referred to the appropriate campus authority for resolution (i.e., Title IX, unlawful discrimination, ethical complaints, grievances, sexual harassment, etc.)

During preparation for the return to in-person operations, managers will be responsible for developing plans to handle traffic flow and crowd control in their areas of operation. If additional resources are needed, managers will work within a process to make such a request. 

Health & Campus Protocol

Any COVID-19 vaccine that has (i) received a License or an Emergency Use Authorization from the Food and Drug Administration, or (ii) for which the World Health Organization has an approved Emergency Use Listing

Yes.  Covid-19 tests are offered for free to all students and employees.

The Human Resources department will continue to serve as the college’s clearinghouse for information related to COVID-19 exposures, conducting contact-tracing activities in conjunction with appropriate local public health authorities.

PCC is a large institution comprising multiple campuses, with more than 25,000 students and more than 3,000 employees. The college will continue to balance the imperative to inform those within our community impacted by COVID-19 with the need to maintain continuity of operations during a pandemic, in accordance with all relevant laws and regulations.

Work Protocols

PCC returned to in-person operations on July 6, 2021. 

For Fall 2021, PCC requires all members of our community who come to campus to demonstrate proof of vaccination as a condition of employment or enrollment, with limited religious and medical exceptions in accordance with California and Federal law.  

The COVID-19 Transition Task Force has created a set of recommendations for college operations during this transition period. College leadership will adopt these recommendations as appropriate in response to ongoing developments and our obligations to our students and employees.

 Please see the Recommendations of the COVID-19 Transition Task Force for more information.

More information about our operations during this time are available on the Reopening Information & Updates website.

In mid-June 2021, public health agencies lifted capacity and physical distancing restrictions. Businesses, institutions, and organizations across the state have been authorized to return to full-capacity operations, with limited exceptions that generally do not apply to PCC.

It is expected that any work-related absence related to COVID-19 will be addressed with COVID-19 leave, sick leave, extended leave, or other leaves as appropriate. For more information about your particular situation, please refer to your collective bargaining agreement or contract(s), or contact the Human Resources department at hrgeneral@pasadena.edu
Effective July 6, 2021, the college has rescinded temporary authorizations for remote work and expects all employees to report to their work location on campus, according to established schedules and work calendars. Any exceptions will be subject to the accommodations process established by Human Resources according to college policy and collective bargaining agreements.
Yes. The COVID-19 Transition Task Force, consisting of a range of personnel from across the college, convened in March-May 2021 to create a set of recommendations for navigating the transition back to in-person operations. 
The success of this transition will depend on the confidence of our community in the wisdom of its approach. The college will remain open to feedback on its plans and adjust our path accordingly. 
The college is prepared to respond if a COVID incident should make it necessary to return to remote operations. The college places its top priority on maintaining a healthy, safe, and effective educational environment that maximizes student success.

This depends. With capacity restrictions and remote work authorizations lifted, individual meeting organizers are responsible for determining the format that works best for their participants.

In the case of co-located campuses, each institution will be expected to report positive cases to the City or County health departments, which will then contact other institutions as part of the contact-tracing process.

One of our strengths as a community is our collective instinct to help our friends and colleagues in need. As is the case in any passing of a member of our community, faculty, staff, and students are advised to share their views with trusted colleagues or professors, and to utilize the professional resources made available by the college as appropriate. Students can contact Personal Counseling Services at personalcounseling@pasadena.edu. Full- and part-time faculty and staff are advised to use the Employee Assistance Program.

Division deans and the Instruction Division will continue to use a number of techniques to create class schedules that meet student success goals while responding to demand.

As is always the case, all employees of the college are expected to honor the terms of their employment as determined by established policies and procedures of the district. Any exceptions will be addressed through the procedures identified in the relevant collective bargaining agreement(s), contract(s), or student handbook, and in accordance with any applicable laws or regulations.

The COVID-19 Transition Task Force is the body responsible for navigating the transition to in-person operations. Once this period has concluded, health and safety concerns will continue to be addressed through relevant committees of the Academic Senate and College Council.

The work of the COVID-19 Transition Task Force involved a wide range of participants from across the college’s governance groups. As such, the Task Force served as a place of consultation and dialogue so that different perspectives could be addressed and incorporated into the collective action of the college.

The planning process governing our ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic is an operational matter and is handled through corresponding procedural models, including engagement with the college's collective bargaining units and various Senates as appropriate.

Supplies/Equipment

Students, faculty, and staff will be responsible for their own masks and any other PPE (such as face guards, gloves, or other items) they choose to wear. The college will provide required PPE in relevant areas of study or practice where additional protection is necessary.

A return to in-person operations means that computer labs and other learning resource centers will be open again to students. The college will also continue its laptop lending program for students who need access to technology to complete their academic programs of study.

As of July 1, 2021, all campus instructional and work spaces have received appropriate protective barriers, markings, and occupancy determinations to meet college guidelines. In mid-June 2021, public health agencies lifted capacity and physical distancing restrictions. Businesses, institutions, and organizations across the state have been authorized to return to full-capacity operations, with limited exceptions that generally do not apply to PCC.

Facilities Services has ordered and installed hand sanitizer dispensers, hand-washing stations, and other facilities to promote the health and safety of our community.

Programs at the federal and state levels have made funding available for the college’s response to the pandemic. While program restrictions remain in place, it may be possible to procure additional supplies for these purposes. For more information, consult with your dean or department supervisor.

Physical Plant

The college has spent these months improving air-filtration and HVAC systems to meet the needs of a return to in-person operations. Filtration systems have been upgraded to MERV-13 standards. (More information about filtration specifications) These systems take into account the ability of individuals to open or close windows as appropriate. 

By the start of the Fall 2021 term, Facilities Services will have installed individual air purifiers in every classroom, office, and workspace on campus.

The college continues to evaluate the need for covered outdoor areas for programs and activities that require large spaces to congregate.

In mid-June 2021, public health agencies lifted capacity and physical distancing restrictions. Businesses, institutions, and organizations across the state have been authorized to return to full-capacity operations, with limited exceptions that generally do not apply to PCC.

Facilities Services is responsible for cleaning all college spaces in accordance with established COVID-19 guidelines. Individual departments have made arrangements with Facilities personnel to accommodate unusual space and equipment requirements.

The college does not expect its PPE storage requirements to negatively impact available space for instruction or operations.

PCC does not have plans to modify its toilets at this time. The CDC has not provided direction on changes to open-lid toilets during this pandemic. 

Facilities Services has spent this time thoroughly cleaning and sanitizing all areas of campus. Improvements have been made to ventilation and other climate support systems to ensure their continued operation. If you notice an area that needs attention, please submit a ticket to Facilities Services and they will respond.