As more of our community becomes vaccinated against COVID-19, we recognize that some may experience side effects that mimic symptoms of infection. These side effects — which include pain at the injection site, swelling, headache, chills, and fever — are normal and typically occur within three (3) days of the injection. 

The following guidance was designed to help students, faculty, and staff determine whether or not to come to class and/or campus if they become symptomatic after vaccination. Everyone should also continue to follow all mitigation measures (e.g., masking, social distancing, etc.) regardless of vaccination status. 

  • Individuals who have received a vaccine in the past three (3) days, and are reporting side effects where the shot was given (e.g., pain, swelling, or redness), but are otherwise well may continue with their normal schedule and activities.
  • Individuals who have received a vaccine in the past three (3) days and are experiencing symptoms of illness like fever, headache, or noticeable tiredness, should stay home. Typically, side effects start within a day of receiving the vaccine and may last for three days.
    • Anyone experiencing these symptoms should stay home until they have been symptom-free for 24 hours without the use of medication.
    • If symptoms persist for more than three (3) days after vaccination, contact the COVID Response Team.
  • Other symptoms such as loss of taste or smell, cough, shortness of breath, nasal congestion, or sore throat are less likely to be side effects of the vaccine and are signs of possible illness. Anyone reporting these symptoms, even after vaccination, should schedule a COVID-19 test and contact the COVID Response Team.
  • Anyone experiencing any COVID-like symptoms more than three (3) days after vaccination should contact the COVID Response Team.

The COVID Response Team can be contacted by creating a referral in Student Success or emailing

Quarantine Requirements

Per MDH guidelines, fully vaccinated individuals will no longer be required to quarantine if they are exposed to COVID-19 as long as it has been at least 14 days after their final dose and they are not showing symptoms.

Helpful Resources