Current COVID Guidelines at Harvard University

Harvard University Commencement and Current COVID-19 Policy:

Keeping Harvard Healthy at Commencement

As we gather for Commencement, it is essential to continue practicing habits and behaviors that reduce the risk of COVID-19transmission. The following guidance will help to keep the Harvard community healthy during this joyous occasion.

  1. Talk to your physician. If you are at increased risk of complications fromCOVID-19 or are otherwise concerned about attending a large event, we advise you to consult with your physician to discuss the most appropriate protective measures.
     
  2. Keep a face mask handy. Face masks are not mandatory on campus, but we strongly encourage carrying one at all times and recommend voluntary masking in crowded settings, especially indoors. High-quality disposable masks, worn with no gaps at the edges, can protect both the wearer and those around them from COVID-19.
     
  3. Practice hand hygiene: Hand hygiene is a simple way to reduce the spread of respiratory viruses. Wash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer before and after eating, engaging with high-touch surfaces, or touching your face or face mask.
     
  4. Be prepared, get tested: If you are attending multiple Commencement events, especially while unmasked, periodic testing throughout the week can help to detect and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Be prepared by securing rapid antigen tests at your local pharmacy. Testing is also available in Cambridge, Boston, and throughout the surrounding area. Limited testing is available on campus.
     
  5. Stay up to date on COVID-19: The COVID-19 outlook is continually evolving. For the most up-to-date information on the state of the virus, monitor Harvard's COVID-19 dashboard and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's COVID Data Tracker.

Each of us can do our part to protect immunocompromised members of our community. Those at increased risk have to take additional precautions in their daily lives, and this should be respected. Wearing a face covering in mask-optional spaces, especially when indoors, can keep everyone healthy as we celebrate.

By accepting the invitation to attend Commencement, you and your guests agree to:

  • Abide by all state, local, and University COVID-19 guidelines and protocols in place at the time you come to campus.
     
  • Acknowledge the evolving nature of current protocols and agree to read all communications from the University sent in advance of this event to ensure you are up to date on the current policies and protocols.
     
  • Understand that the University has a vaccination and booster requirement in place for its community members and strongly encourages all guests to also be fully vaccinated and boosted (if eligible).
     
  • Regardless of vaccination status, if you are attending multiple Commencement events, especially while unmasked indoors, periodic testing throughout the week can help to detect and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Be prepared by securing rapid antigen tests at your local pharmacy. Testing is also available in Cambridge, Boston, and throughout the surrounding area. Limited testing is available on campus.
     
  • Acknowledge that a limited number of events on Commencement Week may be hosted in venues that require face coverings and/or proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test (PCR or antigen).
     
  • Harvard University community members are encouraged to have an acceptable face covering on their persons at all times for situations in which they may be required. At this time, we also strongly recommend voluntary masking indoors and in crowded settings outdoors. High-quality disposable masks, worn with no gaps at the edges, can protect both the wearer and those around them from COVID-19.
     
  • Not to come to campus if you/your guests are exhibiting symptoms, have been diagnosed with COVID-19, or have otherwise been instructed to quarantine or isolate.
     
  • Report immediately to the designated COVID-19 resource team member if you or one of your guests become symptomatic or test positive while on campus.

For more information on Harvard’s COVID-19 practices, visit Harvard.edu/coronavirus.

As of May 17, 2022