MARYLAND (WDVM) — The University System of Maryland is requiring eligible students, faculty and staff who will be on its campuses this fall to be vaccinated against COVID-19, Chancellor Jay Perman announced Friday morning.
“We want students to have these bonding opportunities. We want them to have a college experience that breeds a sense of belonging,” Perman said in a news release. “And if that’s our goal—to have students (a lot of students) safely back on campus this fall, then we have to do everything we can to protect that safety.”
USM institutions include Towson University, Salisbury University and University of Maryland campuses. Click here for a full list. This mandate also includes the regional higher education centers in California, Rockville, and Hagerstown.
In compliance with federal and state laws, exemptions can be granted for medical and religious reasons.
Perman said the decision was based on the recommendation of a USM work group he convened this spring with university-based experts in public health, infectious disease, and emergency management.
In-person learning will return in the fall, but the system will keep safety measures in place. Pre-arrival COVID testing will be required for those coming to campus, as well as surveillence testing for those on campus. Masking will remain per CDC guidance.
“I’m convinced that the risk of doing too little to contain COVID on campus this fall is far greater than the risk of doing too much,” Perman said.