Updated: September 10

Mask Requirements

Continuing this fall 2021 semester, all members of the NYU community—students, faculty, administrators, staff, visitors, vendors, and affiliates—are required to wear masks at all times while indoors on the University campus or while participating in University-sponsored activities off-campus.  Members of the NYU community may remove their mask within NYU facilities only in the following circumstances:

  • Individuals working alone in single occupancy spaces with their doors closed.
  • While eating, which must be done at least six feet apart from other people (and preferably in designated spaces).
  • Residents of NYU housing, alone or around their roommates or partners, while in their own units.

These requirements pertain to all buildings, residence halls and their grounds, clinics, laboratories, classrooms, balconies, plazas, vestibules, loading docks, and on any other campus property, as well as times of brief interaction between co-workers or friends while on the University campus. Masks must cover both mouth and nose.

All members of the NYU community who are not fully vaccinated are also required to wear a mask while outdoors if they are not able to maintain 6 feet of distance from other people.

Masks with one-way valves or vents are not allowed on campus. They allow respiratory droplets to be exhaled through a hole in the material and do not prevent the transmission of COVID-19.

Bandanas, scarves, and other repurposed clothing items used as face coverings are no longer acceptable at NYU. They do very little to stop the spread of respiratory droplets and prevent the transmission of COVID-19.

Some individuals may have a condition they feel would prohibit them wearing a face covering or mask. If you feel this way and you are faculty, staff or an administrator you should contact the Office of Equal Opportunity at oeo.accommodation@nyu.edu for a discussion. Students should email mosescsa@nyu.edu.

Get the Most Protection From Your Mask

When choosing a mask, look at how well it fits, how well it filters the air, and how many layers it has. Always clean your hands with soap and water (or if that’s not available, alcohol-based hand sanitizer) before putting on or taking off your mask.

A Good Face Mask Should:

  • Cover your nose and mouth. Don't wear your mask hanging under your nose or mouth or around your neck. You won't get the protection you need. Don't wear the mask on top of your head, or take it off and on repeatedly. Once it is in place, leave the mask in place until you are no longer in public.
  • Have a snug fit. Your mask should fit snugly against your face, including your nose, mouth, and chin. Make sure your mask doesn’t have any air gaps around the edges
  • Have multiple layers. Pick a mask with layers to keep your respiratory droplets in and others’ out.

Other Considerations to Get the Most Protection:

  • Nose wire. Choose a mask with a nose wire to prevent air from leaking out of the top of the mask.
  • Mask fitters. Consider using a mask fitter or brace over a disposable mask or a cloth mask to prevent air from leaking around the edges.
  • Facial hair. Certain types of facial hair, like beards, can make mask fitting difficult.
  • Try the "knot and tuck" method. Knot and tuck a disposable mask to improve the fit. Learn how (video)
  • Consider double masking. Wearing a disposable mask underneath a cloth mask should push the edges of the disposable mask against your face for a snugger fit.
    • Do not wear two disposable masks. They are not designed to fit tightly and wearing more than one will not improve fit.
    • Do not combine a KN95 mask with any other mask.
Proper face mask use covering your nose and mouth.

DO wear your face mask so that it fully covers your nose and mouth. (NY State Department of Health)

Improper examples of face mask usage

DON'T let your face mask hang below your nose, above your mouth, on your chin, or on your forehead. (NY State Department of Health)

Types of Face Masks

Cloth Face Mask

cloth face covering

Commercially made cloth masks that are washable and help contain respiratory emissions.

For use by the NYU community and general public in non-healthcare settings.

Disposable Mask

disposable mask

Commercially made masks that are meant for one time use and help contain respiratory emissions.

For use by the NYU community and general public in non-healthcare settings.

Medical Grade Mask

medical grade mask

FDA-approved masks that protect the wearer from large droplets and splashes; help contain the wearer’s respiratory emissions.

These masks are reserved for healthcare workers and other approved areas with task-specific hazards as determined by a Job Hazard Analysis. 

Please email The Office of Environmental Health and Safety.

N95 Mask

n95 mask

NIOSH-approved particulate filtering facepieces that are effective in protecting the wearer from airborne particles and aerosols. They must be properly fitted to be effective. An N95 mask with an exhalation valve does provide the same level of protection to the wearer as one that does not have a valve.

These masks are reserved for healthcare workers and other approved areas with task-specific hazards as determined by a Job Hazard Analysis. 

Please email The Office of Environmental Health and Safety.

KN95 masks are not inspected and certified by NIOSH. They may not provide any more protection to the wearer than a regular mask.  

How to Obtain

While NYU community members are expected to supply their own masks, the University keeps a supply available to access as needed at the following locations:

  • Skirball Center for the Performing Arts (lobby), 556 LaGuardia Place
    Monday–Friday: 8:30 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
  • Bobst Library (ground floor), 70 Washington Square
    Monday–Friday: 9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
  • Campus Safety, 561 LaGuardia Place
    24 hours, 7 days a week
  • Rogers Hall (lobby), 6 Metrotech Center, Brooklyn
    Monday–Friday: 9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
  • 370 Jay Street (lobby), Brooklyn
    Monday–Friday: 9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.

Masks can also be obtained from NYU’s Public Health Ambassadors and at any residence hall.

Other Forms of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Depending upon the circumstances and type of work performed, additional personal protective equipment may be required. Individuals will be contacted by their school or unit supervisor with additional information. Questions regarding additional PPE can be directed to the local HR representative for your school or unit.