Many U.S. Colleges Will Mandate Vaccines on Campus Next Fall
Schools that are not requiring vaccinations are instead offering incentives to encourage students to get their shots
THURSDAY, April 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- More than 100 American colleges will require that students get COVID-19 vaccines if they want to be on campus in the fall, a new survey shows.
More than 660,000 cases have been linked to universities since the start of the pandemic, with one-third of those reported since Jan. 1, The New York Times reported. And COVID-19 outbreaks still plague some campuses, even as students have become eligible for vaccines. Salve Regina University in Rhode Island canceled all in-person events for at least a week after more than 30 students tested positive in seven days. Meanwhile, Wayne State University in Detroit suspended in-person classes and on-campus activities in early April.
Schools including DePaul University, Emory University, and Wesleyan University are requiring all students to be vaccinated, The Times survey revealed. Others have said they are requiring athletes or those who live on campus to get a shot. Most are allowing medical, religious, and other exemptions.
At least two dozen colleges, including those in California's public university system, said that they would require shots once the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gives full approval for the three COVID-19 vaccines currently approved for emergency use in the United States, The Times reported.
Many schools that are not requiring vaccinations are instead offering incentives to encourage students to get their shots. Baylor University in Texas and Calvin University in Michigan have both announced that students who have been inoculated can skip mandatory COVID-19 testing, the newspaper said. The University of Wyoming is offering vaccinated students and staff members a chance to participate in a weekly drawing for prizes such as tickets to football or basketball games and Apple products. Employees who are fully vaccinated are eligible for a personal day off.