EUGENE, Ore. – The University of Oregon will require students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated prior to the start of the fall 2021 academic term, the UO announced Monday.
UO President Michael Schill said requiring vaccinations is critical for public health.
“It will help us to reach the highest level of protection possible, reduce infections, limit many of the disruptions of COVID-19, and safeguard the community we live in,” he said in a statement online. “It will also allow our campus community to return to the in-person and on-campus experience that is the cornerstone of academic success, student experience and research innovation.”
The UO said that in the past couple of weeks its leadership has discussed the vaccination policy with experts, students, faculty and staff.
“We have concluded that to protect the health and safety of our university community and the communities we serve, the University of Oregon will require students, faculty, and staff who will be on campus to be vaccinated prior to the start of the fall 2021 academic term." Schill said. "Individuals will be able to request exemptions for medical and non-medical reasons. The science is clear: the COVID‑19 vaccine effectively eliminates the chances of death or serious illness in nearly all COVID‑19 infections.”
Students will be exempted from the vaccination requirement if they have a medical or non-medical reason such as a religious, philosophical or other belief. These exemptions will also be extended to faculty and staff.
More information on these exemptions and other updates on the policy will be available on the UO's COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ webpage.
The UO said the announcement is intended to provide plenty of time to implement the policy. As the policy is finalized more information will be provided about how students and employees can confirm they have been vaccinated or request exemptions.