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Rutgers Students Under Vaccine Mandate, 'On-Campus Participation Not Guaranteed' For Students Granted Exemptions

New Jersey’s Rutgers University is requiring new and returning students to comply with a vaccine mandate to attend classes or live on campus.

The university says that “on-campus participation is not guaranteed” for those granted an “exemption.”

“Exemption requests are evaluated on a case-by-case basis; they are NOT automatically granted,” the university website states. “For those granted exemptions, on-campus participation is not guaranteed, and is dependent on the overall course of the pandemic, the rate and efficacy of vaccination, and the student’s academic program.”

Exemptions will only be considered for medical or religious reasons.

Students must upload their vaccination and booster documentation on the Rutgers Student Immunization portal.

The mandate was first enacted in March 2021. The university made headlines that year for not allowing an unvaccinated student to attend virtual classes.

The Centers for Disease Control ended the pandemic emergency in May.

The university claims that the requirement was made “to minimize outbreaks of COVID-19 in the Rutgers University community; to prevent and reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 among all persons at Rutgers University and Rutgers– affiliated healthcare units; and to promote the public health of the community in a manner consistent with federal, State, and local efforts to stem the COVID-19 pandemic as well as federal and State law.”

For those who are not vaccinated, the university recommends taking some courses online, though not all are offered for virtual learning. Newsweek reports, “The other option for unvaccinated students was to disenroll from their degree.”

According to the report, the No College Mandates lobby group estimates that about 100 universities and colleges in the country still have vaccine requirements, despite the pandemic emergency being over.

The COVID vaccine mandate has prompted swift backlash online, with many calling for a boycott and urging people not to send their children there.

Senator Rand Paul weighed in on the issue, posting to X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, “Requiring 3 COVID vax for college freshman is not just bad science but malpractice. Risk of myocarditis is 28x higher in young men w/COVID vaccine than the risk of myocarditis from COVID. Germany released stats – no healthy young people died from Covid.”

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