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Rutgers to require COVID-19 vaccine for students this fall

Rutgers University will require students enrolling for the 2021 fall semester to show they've received a COVID-19 vaccine, the University announced on its website Thursday.

The public university is one of the first in the nation to announce such a requirement, which will affect its campuses in Newark, New Brunswick and Camden.

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Rutgers announced mandatory vaccinations for students enrolling this fall at its three campuses in New Brunswick, Newark and Camden. (Rodrigo Bernal / Flickr)

“The benefits of COVID-19 vaccination include prevention of serious illness, hospitalization, and death from the virus,” the University’s announcement said. “Broad immunization is critical to help stop the pandemic and to protect our community.”

Rutgers is “encouraging” all of its faculty and staff to get vaccinated, but will not require that they get vaccinated. 

The state has also granted Rutgers approval to administer vaccines to students on campus “when vaccine supplies become available,” according to the announcement, which emphasized that “currently, Rutgers does not have vaccines.”

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Seton Hall has announced plans for a return to primarily in-person learning for the fall, but has not decided whether COVID-19 vaccines will be required for students.

“Seton Hall has not yet made a decision in regard to requiring students to be vaccinated for COVID-19,” Diane Lynch, director of Health Services said. “We continue to monitor public health statistics and changing government guidance as we prepare our plans for the fall 2021 semester and academic year.”

The University has also begun working towards setting up a vaccine clinic on campus, according to Lynch.

“We have been reaching out to government and corporate partners to express our interest in providing a COVID vaccine clinic here, similar to the flu vaccine clinics we provide annually,” Lynch said. “While we have been informed that the current level of available vaccines means that is not yet possible, we are doing all we can to provide this service when circumstances permit.”

Daniel O’Connor can be reached at daniel.oconnor1@student.shu.edu. Find him on Twitter @itsDanOConnor.

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