PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Following suit with other colleges and universities in the area, Rhode Island College and the Community College of Rhode Island announced Wednesday that students must get vaccinated against COVID-19 before returning to campus in the fall.
Both schools sent letters to the campus community saying full- and part-time students will not be able to attend in-person classes, activities, or events if they haven’t gotten vaccinated or obtained an exemption for medical or religious reasons.
“We must take the steps necessary to protect the health and well-being of the RIC community, and vaccinations are the most effective tool to contain the spread of this virus,” RIC President Frank Sánchez wrote.
“This policy will help us achieve our goal of reuniting as a community where we can learn together, socialize, play sports, and more,” CCRI Vice President for Student Affairs Sara Enright said in her letter. “The vaccines are a critical element in protecting public health locally and worldwide. CCRI students need to do their part in this fight.”
Faculty and staff are not required to get vaccinated but they’re strongly encouraged to do so, along with online-only students.
To be considered fully vaccinated, a person must be at least two weeks removed from their final shot.
Enright said students are required to provide proof of vaccination to CCRI Health Services before the first day of classes on Sept. 1, 2021. Students who receive an exemption will need to follow health and safety guidelines, which include mandatory biweekly surveillance testing, mask-wearing, and physical distancing.
To help students, faculty and staff get vaccinated, both CCRI and RIC are hosting clinics on June 29 and beyond.
- CCRI: Clinic schedule and other vaccine information »
- RIC: Clinic schedule and other vaccine information »
“We’ve gotten through the toughest parts of this pandemic, and now the critical step of getting vaccinated will ensure that we all keep one another safe and thrive at CCRI,” Enright added.
“Through our shared understanding, hard work and resilience, RIC has persevered throughout this crisis,” Sánchez wrote. “I appreciate the extraordinary efforts undertaken by the RIC community as we work to return to in-person learning and look forward to personally welcoming you back for the 2021 Fall semester.”
- URI requiring students to receive COVID-19 vaccine »
- JWU requiring all on-campus students to get vaccinated by fall »
- Providence College to mandate student vaccines in fall »
- Mass. state universities to require student vaccinations for fall »