List of Colleges Requiring The COVID Vaccine For Students 2021

Now that the COVID-19 vaccine has been rolled out, the pandemic may soon be getting under control. However, not every American has chosen to get vaccinated. This leaves colleges and universities in a challenging position as they strategize about re-opening campuses. 

As with any area where people congregate, campuses have the potential to become hotspots for SARS-CoV 2 (the virus that causes COVID-19). This is especially problematic since students often move from one building and classroom to another throughout the day, increasing the risk of spread. Institutions are therefore concerned about the risk of accepting unvaccinated students when school starts back this fall. 

Why Campuses Are Making COVID-19 Vaccinations a Requirement 

The last thing any campus wants is to become the center for a new outbreak. That’s why colleges around the country are making the hard (and controversial) choice to require vaccination for students who want to attend classes in person. These mandates aim to reduce exposure and keep students, staff, and faculty as safe as possible. 

Keep in mind, requiring vaccinations isn’t a new concept that came about because of COVID-19. Many schools already require proof of vaccination against other diseases, including Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) vaccination. As a result, it is not unusual that many schools are adding the COVID-19 vaccination requirement to their list. 

That said, the COVID-19 vaccine is currently under Emergency Use Authorization. This doesn’t impact vaccine safety, only manufacturing and administrative processes, but it gives some states and institutions pause while considering the ramifications of vaccination mandates. There are also questions regarding religious or medical exemptions protected by law, and every college must work through those per state and federal guidelines. 

List of Colleges Requiring Students to Get The COVID-19 Vaccine for Fall 202

Below is our comprehensive list of colleges and universities currently requiring students to be COVID-19 vaccinated for the Fall 2021 term. Please keep in mind, different states have different laws, so every college must ensure it is complying with applicable state laws while drawing up its COVID-19 policies.

Jump to a State

ALABAMA

ALASKA

ARIZONA

ARKANSAS

CALIFORNIA

COLORADO

CONNECTICUT

DELAWARE

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

FLORIDA

GEORGIA

HAWAII

IDAHO

ILLINOIS

INDIANA

IOWA

KANSAS

KENTUCKY

LOUISIANA

MAINE

MARYLAND

MASSACHUSETTS

MICHIGAN

MINNESOTA

MISSISSIPPI

MISSOURI

MONTANA

NEBRASKA

NEVADA

NEW HAMPSHIRE

NEW JERSEY

NEW MEXICO

NEW YORK

NORTH CAROLINA

NORTH DAKOTA

OHIO

OKLAHOMA   

OREGON

PENNSYLVANIA

RHODE ISLAND

SOUTH CAROLINA

SOUTH DAKOTA

TENNESSEE

TEXAS

UTAH

VERMONT

VIRGINIA

WASHINGTON

WEST VIRGINIA

WISCONSIN

WYOMING

Extra Considerations 

Schools that don’t require students to have a COVID-19 vaccination may instead opt to implement additional medical screening, such as temperature checking or asking questions to ensure students are asymptomatic. The situation is very fluid, and changes are occurring regularly, so it’s important to keep checking back as we’ll be updating this list as necessary. 

Non-vaccinated students might be excluded from various school-related activities if their inclusion is perceived to pose a health risk. Schools will likely make such determinations on a case-by-case basis. 

A student’s residential status may or may not impact whether they’re required to be vaccinated to attend classes on-campus or to participate in certain events. 

Unvaccinated students need to pay close attention to the policies of the colleges they’ll be attending, as well as any specific policies that might impact them for certain activities. Again, it’s vital to keep checking back for updates and to raise any questions or concerns to your individual school. 

Matt Cates

Matt is a retired Air Force veteran and former courtesy faculty at Oregon State University's AFROTC department. As a freelance copywriter and content creator, he's written for over 250+ companies around the world. Matt specializes in career and higher education topics, with the aim of helping students find the best college programs for their career goals.