SLCC joins several other Utah colleges in requiring COVID-19 vaccine for spring semester

Salt Lake Community College officials announced Friday they will require students to receive the COVID-19 vaccine before registering for spring semester courses.

Salt Lake Community College officials announced Friday they will require students to receive the COVID-19 vaccine before registering for spring semester courses. (Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)



SALT LAKE CITY — Salt Lake Community College officials announced Friday the college will require students to receive the COVID-19 vaccination by the beginning of spring semester.

"Throughout the pandemic, we have been mindful of the health of our college and our local community and as such, we've implemented many precautions related to COVID-19. Given the increasing number of cases due to the delta variant, we have made a decision to adopt a vaccination requirement for all SLCC students beginning Spring Semester 2022," college President Deneece G. Huftalin and student association President Lindsay Simons said in a letter to the campus community.

The college is offering several vaccination clinics on campus to help students receive vaccines before registering for the spring semester, as required by the new mandate.

Huftalin and Simons said exemptions may be granted for those with medical, religious or personal reasons for not getting vaccinated.

Information about the process to upload vaccine documentation or claiming an exemption will be communicated to students during the registration process, according to the letter.

"While this vaccination effort gets underway, we ask that you continue to be diligent in wearing face coverings while on campus, especially in our classrooms and other learning spaces where social distancing is difficult. Along with vaccination, we know that wearing a face covering is an effective way to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and something nearly all of us can do to keep our SLCC community safe and well," college leaders said, thanking students for their "patience and flexibility."

SLCC joins several other schools and colleges that have announced spring vaccine requirements, including the University of Utah, Brigham Young University, Utah State University, Utah Valley University, Weber State University, Westminster College and Davis Technical College.

A bill passed during this year's Legislature, HB308, precluded public schools, hospitals and other government entities from requiring COVID-19 vaccinations available under emergency use authorizations. With full FDA approval, the bill's sponsor has said the Pfizer vaccine will be treated like any other vaccine under state law.

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