COVID-19 Policies for oSTEM Annual Conference

oSTEM, Inc. seeks to provide a safe and healthy environment for all conference participants. With this goal in mind, oSTEM has complied with guidance from local, state, and federal entities and developed its own policies and procedures for employees, vendors, sponsors and guests when attending in-person events.

This document lists the COVID-19 related policies and safety measures that are in effect for attending in-person convenings hosted by oSTEM, Inc. in 2022. oSTEM, Inc. requires the acknowledgement of these policies in advance of the hosted conference, and for every participant to abide by these policies during the event. For any questions related to these policies, please reach out to

As a condition of your admission to all oSTEM, Inc. sponsored or supported events, you will be required to complete this attestation upon your arrival at the conference:

Vaccine Policy Statement

oSTEM believes that vaccines are one of the most powerful tools to fight COVID-19, save lives, and create a safe environment for those who attend oSTEM-sponsored events. As such, oSTEM highly requires that all participants in its in-person meetings and events be “up to date” with their COVID-19 vaccination.

This means receiving all recommended doses of the primary vaccination series and any vaccine booster doses recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevent known as the CDC. By registering for and participating in an event hosted by oSTEM, participants certify that they are up to date with COVID-19 vaccination, or will be up to date with COVID-19 vaccination, by the date of the event. oSTEM accepts full vaccination by vaccines that are approved or authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and vaccines that are listed for Emergency Use (EUL) by the World Health Organization (WHO). An overview of these accepted vaccines can be found on the CDC website.

We recognize that not everyone may be able to get a vaccine due to medical conditions or religious beliefs. To seek a reasonable accommodation to attend in-person meetings, please email by October 21, 2022. This information will be used by oSTEM to determine eligibility for an exemption.

COVID-19 Testing

oSTEM recommends that all participants take a COVID-19 test within 24-48 hours upon arrival at the venue.

Face Coverings

oSTEM recommends that all participants of its in-person convenings wear face coverings in indoor public spaces during the convening while not actively eating or drinking, or presenting on stage.

Face coverings must:

  • Completely cover the nose and mouth
  • Be a well-fitting KN95 mask, N95 mask, a disposable surgical mask, or be made with two or more layers of a breathable fabric that is tightly woven (i.e., fabrics that do not let light pass through when held up to a light source)
  • Be secured to the head with ties, ear loops, or elastic bands that go behind the head.
  • Fit snugly over the nose, mouth, and chin with no large gaps on the outside of the face
  • Be a solid piece of material without slits, exhalation valves, visible holes, punctures, or other openings

oSTEM encourages meeting attendees to bring sufficient masks to last for the duration of the conference. However, additional masks will be available by request.

Social Distancing

oSTEM cannot enforce social distance guidelines during the event and for individuals. However, oSTEM—working closely with the meeting venue—will provide additional seating capacity to allow for voluntary distancing during all activities to the best of its abilities. Further, when feasible, access to outdoor spaces and areas with lower concentrations of people will be provided.

Testing Positive for COVID-19

If any participant receives a positive COVID-19 test result either during or within 48 hours after the conclusion of an oSTEM-sponsored convening, they should notify an oSTEM staff member via Our team will connect with the participant to offer support, ask some questions about their presence at the event and who they may have been in contact with, discuss travel plans and any isolation/quarantine guidance, and provide next steps.

A participant who tests positive for COVID-19 should monitor symptoms and if they become severe (such as persistent pain or pressure in the chest, confusion, or bluish lips or face), seek medical attention.

A participant who has COVID-19 must not enter the event and may only return onsite after being cleared by a member of the oSTEM Conference team.

Venue Policies and Safety Measures

oSTEM recommends all meeting participants abide by the COVID-19 policies and safety measures that have been put in place by the conference venue, including any policies that are in place in addition to the policies set forth by oSTEM in this document. When any venue and oSTEM policies do not align, the strictest safety policy will prevail. For example, if a venue does not specifically require indoor masking, meeting attendees of oSTEM will still need to wear a mask in indoor public places while not actively eating or drinking, as outlined in this document.

Monkeypox Outbreak

Monkeypox is a viral infection caused by the monkeypox virus that can infect animals and humans… The monkeypox virus spreads mostly through close, intimate contact with someone who has monkeypox… [T]he risk of monkeypox is not limited to people who are sexually active or men who have sex with men. Anyone can get or pass along monkeypox.”

Common symptoms of monkeypox can include:

  • Rashes that develop into fluid-filled lesions
  • Fever and/or chills
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Exhaustion
  • Muscle aches and backaches
  • Headache
  • Respiratory symptoms such as sore throat, nasal congestion, coughs

How does it spread?

  • Direct “skin to skin” or “skin to mouth” contact with monkeypox rash, sores, or scabs
  • Touching, hugging, massaging, kissing
  • Sexual Contact
  • Prolonged face to face contact with respiratory droplets from a person with monkeypox (less common)

What can I do to protect myself?

  • Get vaccinated against monkeypox if exposed.

  • Wash your hands regularly.

  • Minimize skin-to-skin contact when attending large gatherings.

  • Avoid sharing items such as towels, clothing, linens or sex toys, especially if someone feels ill. Wash items regularly.

  • Avoid physical and sexual contact with anyone who has a new rash, sore, or who feels ill.

  • Talk to your partners about getting vaccinated and check in with each other about new or unexplained sores or rashes as well as recent illness.

  • Avoid touching or kissing any rashes or sores.


Because guidelines and recommendations are regularly being updated at the local, state and federal level, oSTEM may make changes to these policies on limited notice as circumstances develop. oSTEM will follow all local, state, and federal guidelines, and if at any time this document is not in compliance with the latest guidelines, those guidelines will supersede the policies in this document. However, oSTEM reserves the right to impose more stringent requirements than those of local, state and federal entities (such as mandatory mask-wearing for all attendees) at its convenings.