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Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for Employees

Issue Date: July 2021; Revised: December 2021



Consistent with its duty to provide and maintain a workplace that is free of recognized hazards, Nova Southeastern University (“NSU”) has adopted a Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for Employees. This policy is intended to safeguard the health and well-being of employees and their families, our students, visitors, and others who spend time on our campuses and in our facilities from COVID-19’s infectious conditions that can be reduced through an effective mandatory employee vaccination program. This policy complies with all state and local laws and is informed by guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and public health and licensing authorities, as applicable.


This policy applies to all NSU employees: faculty (including regular full-time and part-time faculty, administrative faculty, and adjunct faculty), regular full-time and part-time non-faculty staff, temporary employees, and individuals receiving offers of employment in any of these categories. This policy does not apply to students, vendors, or visitors. This policy applies only to the requirement for completion of the COVID-19 vaccine and does not supersede or otherwise limit any current or future requirements by NSU’s colleges and/or administrative units for proof of an employee’s receipt of other vaccines or compliance with health and safety requirements. Compliance under this policy may require recurrent vaccinations or boosters on an annual or recurrent basis consistent with U.S. Food and Drug Administration labeling and CDC recommendations.


All employees must either: (a) accurately and truthfully enter the date of the completed vaccination into the NSU Vax Max portal (i.e., receipt of second dose in a 2-dose series vaccine such as Pfizer or Moderna, or receipt of a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson) or (b) obtain an approved Office of Human Resources (OHR) vaccine exemption (with specification of any reasonable accommodation if applicable and available). For purpose of compliance with this policy, an employee is considered to have completed the COVID-19 vaccination two weeks after the receipt of either the single dose or 2-shot vaccine series to enable antibodies to develop. The process for seeking an exemption and accommodation is explained below. Individuals receiving offers of employment will be required to comply with this policy prior to the commencement of employment.

Any current employee who changes status resulting in the requirement to be fully vaccinated or approved-exempted (e.g., changing from full-time remote to an on-ground or hybrid work location, or expiration of a temporary exemption for medical reasons) will be required to be in compliance with this policy prior to the status change. Failure to comply with the policy requirements by the effective date of the status change may result in the employee’s separation from employment.   

Individuals receiving offers of employment are required to timely comply with this policy prior to the commencement of employment by providing either proof of a completed vaccination or receiving an OHR vaccine exemption approval letter. Individuals receiving offers of employment from NSU who do not timely comply with this policy will have their offer of employment rescinded.

Any falsification of vaccine or exemption information will subject an employee to potential disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment or rescission of an offer of employment if prior to the individual’s commencement of work.

NSU will assist employees by providing on-site access to immunizations at its Davie campus (subject to vaccine availability) or identifying sites where employees may receive the vaccinations. Exempted employees who later seek to be immunized may request release from scheduled work time with pay (up to two hours) subject to the scheduling requirements of the college or administrative unit to obtain a vaccination injection.

Request for Vaccine Exemption and Accommodation

Employees and individuals accepting an offer of employment who have need of exemption from receiving the COVID-19 vaccine may qualify for one of the following exemption options: (a) an underlying medical condition or disability that contraindicates administration of the COVID-19 vaccine, (b) pregnancy, pregnancy-related medical condition, or (c) an objection based upon a sincerely held religious belief, practice, or observance.

Florida state law requires employers to offer employees with a regular assigned work location in the state of Florida the opportunity to opt-out of a mandatory vaccinated requirement by electing one of the following exemptions: (d) COVID-19 immunity, (e) requested exemption contingent upon submitting to periodic testing at NSU’s expense, (f) use of personal protective equipment provided by NSU upon request in the presence of others in the workplace (or another location when representing NSU), or (g) anticipated pregnancy.

NSU will provide exemption from the vaccination requirement and engage in an interactive process to determine if a reasonable accommodation can be provided so long as it does not create an undue hardship for NSU and/or does not pose a direct threat to the health or safety of others in the workplace and/or to the employee. (Refer to the Exemption from Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination web page for further details.)

To request an exemption from the vaccination requirement for one of the above reasons, employees or individuals accepting offers of employment are required to submit a completed Request for Exemption from Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination & Reasonable Accommodation Form to OHR.  Employees may request an exemption and/or seek workplace accommodation without fear of retaliation.

After receipt of the request for exemption, OHR will review the documentation submitted and, if the exemption is approved, engage in the interactive process with the employee to clarify the nature of the request, determine exemption eligibility, and identify potential reasonable accommodations (with assistance from his/her supervisor, and/or college/unit administration where necessary). Accommodations will be granted where they do not create an undue hardship for NSU and/or do not pose a direct threat to the health or safety of others in the workplace and/or to the employee.

If an employee or individual accepting an offer of employment believes that s/he has been treated in a manner not in accordance with this policy, please notify OHR immediately via Director of Benefits Larry Cox at extension 27873.

Click here for Frequently Asked Questions.

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