A college in New York will require students to be vaccinated for COVID-19 before they return to campus in the fall.
The Hudson Valley institution, Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, announced this week that there will be no remote learning provided in the next academic year, and that all students will be required to receive vaccinations as the college reopens.
The only exceptions will be made for medical or religious reasons, Vassar President Elizabeth Bradley said, noting that the college is “re-committing to our core educational model, and therefore we will no longer be offering a remote learning option.”
Classes for the fall semester at Vassar will begin on Monday, Aug. 30, with the final day of the term scheduled for Friday, Dec. 17 with the regular, pre-pandemic schedule of breaks.
“If vaccination is not accessible in your area, we will work to get students vaccinated locally. We believe this is the best way to ensure the health and safety of everyone on campus,” she said. “Because our students will be fully vaccinated, we will no longer maintain a closed campus.
“With our return to in-person learning and a more typical residential model, students and visitors will be free to come and go on and off campus as they had prior to the pandemic.”
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Bradley said that the college is also encouraging faculty members and employees to get vaccinated as soon as possible, and that the calendar is subject to change depending on how the COVID-19 pandemic evolves.
“Protocols for the fall will be dictated by local and state guidelines; the use of masks, social distancing, and other expectations that have become commonplace during the pandemic will be determined as we near the start of the semester,” she said.
“Our planning is based on science-driven data and predicated upon local, state, and federal public health guidelines.”
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