Rutgers Mandates Booster Shot For All Students & Staff, Classes Remote Through January 31

Following in the footsteps of Hoboken’s Stevens Institute of Technology and Princeton University, New Jersey’s State University announced this morning that all students and staff must get the booster shot, even though in-person classes will not resume until January 31, as Rutgers University classes are all virtual until then.

Rutgers has a total of 71,000 students and 25,600 employees across its campuses statewide.

The Rutgers decision comes amid New Jersey’s highest daily number of COVID cases, hospitalizations and deaths since the height of the pandemic last May.

In a statement this morning on the Rutgers website, Antonio M. Calcado, the University’s
Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer stated, “I am writing to you today to inform you of important changes to how we will start the new semester, including the temporary use of remote instruction where possible, critical new vaccine requirements, and other important updates to our operating status. These important changes will affect you and every member of the university community.

The data and the science surrounding the surge in COVID-19 cases, and the dramatic spread of the Omicron variant, require that we adapt to the evolving situation without sacrificing our goal of returning to a campus experience that is robust, rewarding, and safe. To do so, we are implementing appropriate contingency plans that rely on today’s best available information and expertise so that we may continue to manage the impact of this virus at the university.”

Calcado continued, saying, “The university, all clinics, libraries, and research operations continue to remain open. However, the previously announced pause of the in-person return to campus for employees has been extended through Sunday, January 30, 2022. Vice presidents, deans, and directors are asked to assess their operations and to encourage all employees who can telecommute to please do so in accordance with the clarification of the Telecommuting Policy relaxation described in Senior Vice President for Human Resources Vivian Fernández’s December 3, 2021 email. In-person schedules for employees are expected to resume on Monday, January 31, 2022.

Employees typically deemed essential should continue to report as currently scheduled unless notified otherwise by their supervisors.

Employee Vaccination and Booster Requirement

The university continues to require all employees to be vaccinated or have an approved medical or religious exemption. These complete records must be uploaded to the Rutgers Vaccination Portal by January 4, 2022.

In addition, all employees, except those with previously approved medical or religious exemptions, will be required to receive a vaccine booster and upload proof of same. A follow-up email on this topic will be sent later this week to all employees. More information on scheduling a vaccine booster is available.

Student Vaccine Booster Requirement

We are now requiring that all vaccinated students obtain a booster vaccination as soon as eligible. Eligibility for a booster is defined as six months after the last mRNA vaccine or two months after a J&J vaccine. Those students who are now eligible must obtain a vaccine booster by January 31, 2022, and proof of the booster must be uploaded to the vaccine portal by that date. Students residing on campus are strongly encouraged to upload their status by January 15, 2022. More information on scheduling a booster at the university can be found here. Students with approved medical or religious exemptions are excused from the booster requirement.

The university, all clinics, libraries, and research operations continue to remain open. However, the previously announced pause of the in-person return to campus for employees has been extended through Sunday, January 30, 2022. Vice presidents, deans, and directors are asked to assess their operations and to encourage all employees who can telecommute to please do so in accordance with the clarification of the Telecommuting Policy relaxation described in Senior Vice President for Human Resources Vivian Fernández’s December 3, 2021 email. In-person schedules for employees are expected to resume on Monday, January 31, 2022.

Employees typically deemed essential should continue to report as currently scheduled unless notified otherwise by their supervisors.”

 

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