Coronavirus Update

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Latest News

(Updated October 27, 2021)

The White House has announced it will lift COVID-19 travel restrictions for fully vaccinated international visitors entering the United States, starting November 8, 2021. The new travel policy will require all adult foreign nationals to show proof of FULL vaccination as well as provide a negative COVID test three days prior to departure.

This fall MCU returned to a primarily in-person residential and academic experience with most students, faculty and staff back on campus. We are continuing to assess public health conditions, including the presence of COVID-19 in our community and will update the university’s guidelines –- including mask and gathering policies –- as appropriate.

Students, faculty and staff who plan to live, study or work on campus must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Medical and religious exemptions are granted in accordance with federal and local law.

Free COVID-19 vaccines are available to everyone age 12 and up—regardless of immigration or insurance status. You can find a walk-in clinic here. MCU also offers regular COVID-19 screening on campus every Tuesday from 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

Community messages

August 18, 2021: What to Know about COVID Policies Upon Return to Campus

June  4, 2021: International Students Returning to Campus and Vaccination Policy 

May 26, 2021: Students Must Be Vaccinated Upon Returning to Campus This Fall

May 25, 2021: A Return to Campus and Vaccination Policy

March 9, 2021: Parents Letter About Fall 2021 Plans

February 5, 2021: Stay at Home Order Lifted, But Stay Vigilant

January 5, 2021: Spring Athletic Season Cancelled and Housing Suspended

December 23, 2020: Meal Plans Suspended for Spring 2021

December 23, 2020: Villas Move-In Instructions and Policies for Spring 2021

December 23, 2020: Spring Athletic Season Updates and Testing Requirements

November 28, 2020: Safer at Home Order Issued for LA County

October 30, 2020: Athletics Opens Strength Training, HR Policies and Other Updates

October 14, 2020: In-Season Athletes Allowed to Move into Villas in Spring

October 4, 2020: Classes to Remain Online for Spring 2021

September 14, 2020: President’s Message to Parents about Fall Startup

August 26, 2020: Villas Housing Protocols

August 3, 2020: MCU Moves Fully Online for Fall 2020

July 21, 2020: Update on Campus Status and Reopening Plans

July 9, 2020: ICE Guidance on International Students

June 24, 2020:  Extending Campus Closure Through July

June 9, 2020: Campus Opening in Fall with In-person and Online Classes

May 21, 2020: President’s Message about MCU’s Conceptional Plan to Reopen

May 18, 2020: President’s Message on CARES Act Funding

May 7, 2020: Single Rooms for the Price of a Double

April 12, 2020: President’s Easter Message to Students

April 6, 2020: Memo to Parents about Online Learning and Housing Updates

March 20, 2020: Online Classes Extended and Commencement Postponed

March 19, 2020: President’s Message: We’re Experiencing Great Change

March 16, 2020: Campus Closure for Two Weeks

March 16, 2020: Internship Guidelines

March 11, 2020: Villas Will Remain Open During Campus Closure

March 11, 2020: Classes Moving Online for Two Weeks

March 11, 2020: Memo to Parents about Steps MCU is Taking to Protect Students

March 11, 2020: Provost Memo to Faculty about Classes Moving Online and Next Steps

March 4, 2020: Keeping Marymount Safe

February 28, 2020: President’s Message on Preventative Actions and Staying Vigilant 

Frequently asked questions

Is the campus open?

What will Fall 2021 look like?
MCU will offer significant in-person classes and operations for the fall 2021 semester, including normal residential, co-curricular and athletic experiences for students. Students will also be able to select some online and hybrid courses. Face-to-face and hybrid courses include weekly in-person sessions. The class schedule specifies the modality for each course offering.

What if I need accommodations?
Please contact Laura Niemiec at to request required accommodations.

Are the shuttles in operation?
Shuttle service will be available at the start of the semester.

Will tutoring be available in person?
Tutoring and study hall will be available both in person and virtually.

Will MCU require the COVID-19 vaccination?
Yes. All MCU students, faculty and staff must submit proof of a COVID-19 vaccination prior to participating in on-campus instruction and co-curricular activities or accessing campus facilities unless you have an approved medical or religious exemption. Only COVID-19 vaccines authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the World Health Organization will be accepted. Students should submit documentation to the Student Wellness Center at, and employees can forward a copy of their vaccination card to Human Resources.

What if I have a medical reason that prevents me from getting a vaccination?
Your health care provider must compete and sign MCU’s certificate of medical exemption for immunizations form and submit to

Can I be tested for COVID-19 instead of receiving a vaccine?
Routine COVID-19 testing will not replace the requirement for vaccination.

What if I am not able to get a COVID-19 vaccine by the time I need to be on campus?
Please contact us to determine what accommodations may be feasible.

What are the consequences for non-compliance for students?
Students who choose not to be immunized and do not receive an approved medical or religious exemption will not be able to attend in-person classes or events, access the MCU campus nor live in the Villas, and will be limited to online course registration. Not all courses will be offered online.

Where can I get a vaccine?
Free COVID-19 vaccines are readily available at health clinics, pharmacies and community vaccination sites. You can also search, text your zip code to 438829 or call 1-800-232-0233 to find locations near you.

Do I have to wear a face covering if I am vaccinated?
Masks are required indoors for everyone. This includes those who are vaccinated, if in a public setting. Public settings include The Commons, shuttles, hallways, classrooms, library, labs, shared offices, restrooms and the café. However, face coverings are not required outdoors for the vaccinated. If you are unvaccinated and unable to maintain physical distancing of at least six feet from others, please wear a mask.

What do I do if I forgot my mask?
Masks are available throughout campus.

Do I still need to practice physical distancing?
No, physical distancing is no longer required, but efforts should be made to reduce overcrowding, particularly in indoor spaces.

If I get the COVID-19 vaccine, will I still need to complete the daily health check to use campus facilities?
Yes. We request everyone check in upon their visit either through this link or one of the QR codes posted around campus. This will continue to ensure individuals using campus facilities are not experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

What if I get sick or test positive?
To protect the Mariner community and limit the spread of the virus, we must all take responsibility and report if we have COVID-19 or suspect we have been exposed. Students should contact the Student Wellness Center, and employees can contact Human Resources. Additionally, students should notify their instructor. If you are able to continue the coursework and/or have an online option, do so. If you are too ill to continue the coursework, you will need to discuss your options with your instructor.

What do I need to know about living in the Villas this year?
Like all Marymount students attending classes, students living in campus housing will be required to comply with the university’s vaccine mandate. Domestic students will not be allowed to move in without having submitted their Covid-19 vaccination information or having been granted an exemption. International students will be required to either vaccinate immediately upon arrival or apply to receive an exemption.

Both single- and double-occupancy rooms are available, but no triple-occupancy rooms. Individuals sharing a Villa are considered a household and are not required to wear face coverings while in their “home” area, but they are required to wear face coverings when exiting their living spaces and in public areas of the Villas. Guests (a person not living in that household) must wear a mask the entire time they are visiting. Students are not required to wear a mask outside but must adhere to social distancing guidelines as provided by Los Angeles Public Health. There may be events that require everyone to wear a mask regardless of vaccination status.

What will happen if a residential student tests positive for COVID-19?
A residential student testing positive will be relocated to designated housing specifically set aside for COVID-19 isolation/quarantine. The student will need to remain until medically cleared to return to normal activities and comply with requests for contact tracing.

What dining options will be available?
MCU will not offer a dining plan for the fall 2021 semester. However, students will still be able to buy breakfast and lunch at the Bistro by the Sea café when on campus. Vending machines are also available on campus and at the Villas. Since each unit comes with its own kitchen and appliances, many students choose to prepare their own meals. Alternatively, you can order from local restaurants and take advantage of the occasional food trucks and grocery delivery services.

What do I need to know about traveling to the U.S.?
On October 15, 2021, the White House announced it will lift COVID-19 travel restrictions for fully vaccinated international visitors entering the United States, starting November 8, 2021. The new travel policy will require all adult foreign nationals (including F-1 visa-holders) to show proof of FULL vaccination as well as provide a negative COVID test three days prior to departure.

Vaccine exemptions include children under 18, people who participated in COVID-19 clinical trials, who had severe allergic reactions to the vaccines, or are from a country where shots are not widely available (signified by a vaccination rate less than 10%).

MCU has returned to a mainly on-ground modality for Fall 2021. How does this affect my immigration status? 
Because MCU is returning to an on-ground modality with some online and hybrid classes, you are required to return to the U.S. and the MCU campus to maintain your F-1 visa status. Be sure to check in with Ryan O’Connell, director of international services, when you arrive to ensure your immigration record is properly updated for the semester.

What if I can’t get vaccinated before my arrival? 
OVID-19 vaccines will vary depending on your home country, but we will accept any approved by the World Health Organization for emergency use, which currently include Pfizer/BioNTech, AstraZeneca/Oxford, Johnson & Johnson/Janssen, Moderna, Sinopharm and Sinovac. We hope you have access to one of these vaccines and can complete the required series before your arrival in the United States. If not, you will be required to get vaccinated just after you arrive.

To obtain the COVID-19 vaccine when you are in the U.S., please visit the Centers for Disease Control website or LA County’s Department of Public Health website to find a clinic near you. MCU is within close proximity to several vaccine clinics. You can also text your zip code to 439929 to receive a list of locations near you. Or call 1-800-232-0233. Additionally, MCU will host a vaccine clinic during new student orientation as well.

Once completed, please return proof to the Student Wellness Center at


Prevention and well-being

The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses:

  • Clean your hands often by washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Soap and water should be used if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick and stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue or use the inside of your elbow. Throw used tissues in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Social distancing can stop or slow down the spread of COVID-19.

FAQs on illness prevention and well-being.

Emergency Relief Funds


The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), which was signed into law on March 27, 2020, established and funded the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) to provide emergency financial aid grants to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19. MCU received $874,466 under this program–50 percent of which was disbursed directly to students.


The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) was signed into law in December 2020. The new legislation allocates two separate grants to MCU totaling $1,342,246. One for $437,233 will provide emergency funds of $500-$1,250 directly to students for unexpected expenses based on demonstrated financial need. The second will assist in covering institutional costs related to the disruption of campus operations.


The American Rescue Plan (ARP) includes additional COVID-19 relief for institutions of higher education. This new COVID stimulus bill included $40 billion, available through September 30, 2023, for higher education institutions and students, using the same Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) model established in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

If you or your family have experienced a loss of income this past year, we encourage you to contact our office to discuss your options. You may be eligible to submit an income adjustment appeal from the income reported in your 2021-22 FAFSA, which may qualify you to receive additional funding in the 2021-22 academic year pending submission of 2021-22 FAFSA verification documents. For additional information about this process, please contact Student Financial Services at (310) 303-7335 or via email at

To be considered for HEERF III COVID relief funding, students can apply here.

Additional resources

Having a COVID-Safe Thanksgiving

MCU COVID-19 Student Policy Updates (August 2021)

Vaccine Information and Locations 

What You Need to Know about Vaccines

Mental Health Counseling Helpline

MCU COVID-19 Employee Policies and Procedures

MCU COVID-19 Student Policies

Centers for Disease Control (CDC)

Los Angeles Department of Public Health

Psychological Tips for Managing COVID Concerns

Local Resources