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Notre Dame mandates COVID booster shots for all students

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The University of Notre Dame will require all its students to receive a COVID-19 vaccine booster in order to attend classes on or off campus, the school announced on Monday, Dec. 6.

Students received an email announcing the policy change on Monday afternoon; the university tweeted the updated policy around the same time.

“All students are required to be fully vaccinated or receive an exemption before arriving on campus for the 2021-22 academic year,” said the school on its “student vaccination requirement” webpage.

“Additionally, as an extension of the University’s existing COVID-19 vaccination requirement, the COVID-19 booster is required of all students – undergraduate, graduate, and professional, including students studying or performing research remotely and/or virtually – who have been fully vaccinated for more than six months,” they said.

The school already mandated that students receive a coronavirus vaccine or an exemption from the vaccination requirement prior to the start of the 2021 fall semester. Students who have been granted an exemption from the initial vaccination requirement will not be required to receive a booster shot; students who are seeking an exemption from the booster requirement will be permitted to apply for one.

In order to facilitate booster access, the university will be hosting an on-campus booster shot clinic from Jan. 11-14. Classes begin for the spring 2022 semester on Jan. 10. Students are also permitted to receive a booster shot from an off-campus clinic.

Students who receive booster shots from off-campus locations will have to submit proof of their vaccination to the school’s health services, the university explained to students.

According to the email sent to students, there have been 364 positive cases of COVID-19 on Notre Dame’s campus since the start of the fall 2021 semester, and the school has seen low positivity rates for people who are tested on a regular basis.

The University of Notre Dame has more than 12,000 students, including more than 8,000 undergraduate students.

While many schools have required coronavirus vaccines to attend class this academic year, only a handful–including Bowdoin College, Notre Dame, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Smith College, Syracuse University, and Wesleyan University–are now requiring boosters for anyone who was vaccinated over six months ago.

Other schools are reportedly considering whether to mandate booster shots.

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