DENVER (AP) — Colorado’s biggest public universities will require students, faculty and staff to receive COVID-19 vaccinations before the beginning of the fall semester, school leaders announced Wednesday.
The University of Colorado system’s four campuses will require the shots along with the Colorado State University system, the University of Northern Colorado and Metropolitan State University of Denver, The Denver Post reported.
Fort Lewis College, the University of Denver and Colorado College in Colorado Springs previously announced students would need to be vaccinated this fall.
Ken McConnellogue, a CU system spokesman, said the Colorado Department of Higher Education encouraged the move, and “the science around COVID-19 and vaccines is clear and compelling.”
“Vaccines will also allow on-campus students and faculty to resume their in-person experience that is critical to academic success and personal growth,” he added.
State law has long mandated college students be vaccinated against measles, mumps and rubella, with exemptions possible due to religion and medical conditions. McConnellogue said campuses will allow for COVID-19 vaccine exemptions, as well.
The Colorado Community College System, made up of 13 colleges and educating more than 125,000 students annually, announced Wednesday it would not require students, staff or faculty to receive COVID-19 vaccinations.
System leaders said they hoped to remove barriers to community college students who were more likely to work part-time or full-time jobs, be parents or have limited resources.
Common symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, breathing trouble, sore throat, muscle pain, and loss of taste or smell. Most people develop only mild symptoms, but some have more severe symptoms, including pneumonia.