COVID-19 Face Coverings Policy

UAF Policy 02.09.003

Original Adoption: July 23, 2020

Revised: August 3, 2021

Responsible Chancellor's Cabinet Member: UAF Executive Officer

Responsible Department/Office: Chancellor's office

Download signed policy (PDF)


Effective August 2, 2021, face coverings must be worn by all individuals regardless of vaccination status at all locations owned or operated by the University of Alaska Fairbanks, except for those who are medically exempted or under the age of 2. Face coverings must be worn:

  • Indoors in all cases, except as specifically exempted in section 7 of this policy, AND
  • Outdoors whenever a 6-foot distance between individuals cannot be continuously met.

Face coverings consist of face masks or face shields. However, face shields may fulfill the face covering requirement in the following situations only :

  • When lecturing, such that 6 feet of continuous physical distance can be guaranteed, OR
  • As approved on a case by case basis (see exemptions section 7.0).

Face coverings are required regardless of vaccination status on UAF campus public transportation or where it may be otherwise required due to local government or university policy.


This policy is being implemented to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread. The face covering is intended to help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling through the air and onto other people.

The face covering policy is in effect due to the CDC COVID-19 transmission level currently being classified as "substantial" or "high." When the transmission level decreases below these levels for seven consecutive days in areas owned or operated by UAF, this policy will be reevaluated.


  1. For the purposes of this policy, a face covering includes face masks and face shields that cover your nose and mouth, extend around the sides of the face, and secure under the chin.

  2. A face mask is any fabric that covers the nose and mouth and fits securely and snugly against the sides of the face. Gaiters, and masks with exhalation valves or vents are not considered acceptable face masks at this time.

  3. A face shield is a clear plastic or plexiglass shield that is hooded or that covers the entire face from the forehead to below the chin and extends around the sides of the head. A headband must hold the shield securely in place.

  4. An individual is considered fully vaccinated:
    • Two weeks after their second dose in a two-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or
    • Two weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Use of Cloth Face Coverings to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — How to select, Wear, and Clean Your Mask

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — Considerations for Wearing a Mask

Center for Disease Control and Prevention — When You’ve Been Fully Vaccinated

Center for Disease Control and Prevention — CDC Transmission Level Indicator


All individuals should be aware of the proper use, care, storage and disposal of face coverings and PPE.

All individuals should refer to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance on face coverings with regard to type and fit, wearing and washing.


University employees:

University personnel are expected to comply with the face covering requirement as a condition of employment unless medically exempted. Noncompliance reports should be submitted to employee supervisors or to Human Resources.

University students:

Students are expected to follow face covering requirements when at a location owned or operated by the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Students who fail to comply will be subject to disciplinary action under the Student Code of Conduct (09.02). Failure to comply with this policy could result in educational sanctions, university probation, loss of housing, suspension or expulsion.

Members of the public and visitors on campus:

Individuals who are not UAF employees or students who fail to comply with this policy may be excluded from UAF facilities, property or programs and may be subject to trespass from properties owned or operated by UAF.


The University of Alaska Fairbanks may provide an exemption to this policy through the UAF Student Health and Counseling Center, Disability Services, or UA Human Resources.

Job-specific PPE requirements:

  • Face coverings do not replace required job-specific PPE, such as medical/procedure masks, face shields or respirators. See your supervisor for guidance on job-specific PPE requirements.

Medical or health risk:
Face coverings are not required when:

  • An individual is unable to wear a mask due to a health condition; students can contact UAF Disability Services and employees/visitors can contact UA Human Resources to receive guidance or request ADA accommodation.

  • Wearing a face covering would create a safety risk to the person as determined by local, state, or federal regulations or workplace safety guidelines.

Face shields may substitute for face masks on a case by case basis as approved by the director of Environmental Health, Safety and Risk Management. Requests for exemptions are made by the department director or dean.

Face coverings are not required when:

  • Working or spending time alone in a personal office with a closed door

  • Working or spending time outdoors (e.g., walking, exercising) where a 6-foot distance is continuously maintained between individuals, or vaccinated individuals from the same household are together.

  • Operating a single-occupancy vehicle

  • Teleworking (i.e., not reporting on site to a university work location)

  • Inside a private, on-campus residential unit

  • Eating or drinking, provided that a 6-foot physical distance between people is continuously maintained

  • In special communal work environments where additional protective measures are in effect, e.g., Toolik Field Station, UAF fire station

  • Conducting specifically exempted medical or training (including athletics training) exercises

Requests for guidance and/or Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) accommodation based on a medical condition must be submitted to:


The University of Alaska Fairbanks through Disability Services or UA Human Resources can grant the status of authorizing un-masked users.




Daniel M. White, Chancellor
University of Alaska Fairbanks