By Joe Arruda
After announcing a COVID-19 vaccine clinic on campus in early May, Springfield College President Mary-Beth Cooper announced that residential students will be required to be vaccinated for the fall 2021 and spring 2022 semesters. On Wednesday, more information was released.
In an email from Patrick Love, the College’s Vice President for Student Affairs, the school shared that the requirement is consistent with the recommendation from the American College Health Association and colleges across the state will employ similar requirements.
Also in the email, students were provided a link to where they should submit an image of their vaccination card for proof – in an email to the health center. The deadline for submission is August 6.
The only exceptions to the requirement are for medical and religious reasons, and the same process of being exempt from any other vaccines should be followed.
Love stated in the email:
“A medical exemption will be provided when certification is made, in writing, by a health care provider who has personally examined the student and in whose opinion the physical condition of such student is such that their health would be endangered by vaccination against COVID-19.
A religious exemption will be provided when a student states, in writing, that such vaccination would conflict with their religious beliefs.”
For students who are approved exemption, the mask requirement will persist in the classroom. Also, Love states, unvaccinated students will “likely be unable to participate in activities that require close contact” such as:
- intercollegiate athletics
- club sports
- Cultural Connections
- Alternative Spring Break
- Outdoor Pursuits
- other activities or on-campus employment that involves close contact
Love closed out the email stating that the administration looks forward to being fully back on campus in the fall, pending continuing progress in the pandemic.