COVID vaccines at CU and CSU should be required – Aurora, Colorado

Aurora, Colorado 2021-04-30 18:13:59 –

Students who choose a face-to-face learning environment do so because they want the full experience of being part of the university community. This is an experience that has been proven for generations to contribute to student academic success and personal growth.

Our campus moved to a hybrid model last year due to public health concerns and under the guidance of our local and state health authorities. We learned a lot from this experience. Many of the best tools and techniques that have guided us throughout the year continue to be woven into the operation of our classrooms and campuses. However, once the vaccine became widely available, we always intended to resume face-to-face learning on campus as completely and quickly as possible.

Now, at that point, this week, both the University of Colorado and Colorado State University systems are working with other universities in the state to announce that on-campus employees and students will need vaccines in the fall semester of 2021. Did.

We expect full approval of one or more vaccines by the US Food and Drug Administration (vaccines are currently available under the FDA’s Emergency Use Authorization). And, of course, the medical and non-medical exemptions granted under state and federal law will be fully available to students and employees. However, we believe that this requirement is an important step towards achieving our goal of returning to face-to-face learning as quickly and as completely as possible.

We also know that the majority of students, their families, and faculty are ready to return home. Like the rest of the world, they crave to look normal.

As a research university, we strongly support the use of general vaccination as one of the greatest achievements in the history of science and medicine in preventing serious illness and death. We have long sought evidence of vaccination against other infectious diseases in accordance with state law. This latest requirement is similar to existing requirements for catastrophic diseases such as measles. In short, demanding vaccines is nothing new to us, and as public health needs evolve, our requirements must constantly evolve.

Both universities recognize that the online learning experience is the right choice for many, and many college students prefer the online option. However, on-campus experience is also the right choice for many, and our students have overcome unprecedented disruptions to life on campus since the onset of COVID-19.

We thank our faculty and staff for their tireless efforts to make this last bizarre year as manageable and informative as possible for our students. And I would like to thank the students and their families for understanding the need for different ways of learning and student life on the university campus during the pandemic. If you have a silver lining, it means that our students have learned to be more flexible and adaptable — skills that help them well — and so do we.

Now you are ready to completely revive the campus. This vaccine requirement is essential for that.

Tony Frank is Prime Minister of the Colorado State University System. Mark Kennedy is President of the University of Colorado System.

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