Duke to require students to be vaccinated for fall semester

All students will have to be vaccinated for COVID-19 before they can enroll for the fall semester, President Vincent Price announced Friday. 

The policy covers all undergraduate and graduate students who intend to be on campus for any amount of time starting in the fall, and students will have to present proof of their vaccination to Student Health before enrolling. Duke will accommodate documented medical and religious exemptions. 

“Looking ahead, we know that widespread vaccination will be the only way to facilitate a return to normal and robust campus life,” Price wrote in a message to students, faculty and staff. 

Duke has offered all students and employees the opportunity to be vaccinated, Price noted. He urged those who have not yet been vaccinated to schedule appointments as soon as possible. 

“We cannot guarantee that our supply of vaccines will continue at the same rate; if you miss this opportunity, you will have to obtain a vaccination from another health care provider or a public health agency and provide confirmation to Student Health,” he wrote.

Duke joins a growing number of colleges and universities that plan to implement vaccination requirements for students. At least 14 others had made such an announcement as of Thursday, according to CNN, including Rutgers, Cornell, Brown, the University of Notre Dame and Syracuse. 

“The past fourteen months have been among the most difficult and exhausting in our university’s history,” Price wrote. “Under great stress, and often at great peril, we have remained committed to each other—and to our missions of discovery, research, and patient care. Today, I ask you to join me in taking the next step toward ensuring the safety and vitality of our university community.” 

This is a developing story and will be updated if new information becomes available.

Matthew Griffin

Matthew Griffin was editor-in-chief of The Chronicle's 116th volume.


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