Going into the fall semester of 2021, many New York college students will be vaccinated and safely attending classes at full capacity. As of May 10th, 2021, New York governor Andrew Cuomo announced that for the new school year, all SUNY and CUNY students will be requiring full COVID-19 vaccination cards for attendance. With the state’s residents having differing opinions on the vaccine, the news about the new mandate has caused many people to share their thought on the fairness of this new rule.
Many New York colleges have already promoted Cuomo’s new statement about the vaccine, providing information that no student shall be allowed to return in person without a completed COVID vaccination record. In an email to its student and faculty, SUNY Brockport emphasized this importance.
The email read, “Earlier today, Governor Cuomo announced that New York State will require COVID-19 vaccinations for all in-person students this fall who attend public colleges and universities. This requirement is contingent on the vaccines receiving full FDA approval. The policy also would need to be adopted by the SUNY Board of Trustees.”
Now that the FDA has approved these vaccines for use, the room for arguments on their safety is eliminated, making it easier for this to be a college requirement. As educated and opinionated individuals, many college students have already been very vocal about the news.
A poll was conducted through social media to find students who this new rule would apply to and to see whether or not they were already vaccinated in order to get their opinions on the upcoming semester. Out of 34 answers, 88% of students said they are already vaccinated while 12% answered that they were not. Kaylie Osbourn, 21, is one of these students, currently vaccinated and looking forward to what the future holds.
“I think it’s dumb that by this point people still won’t get it, we literally had to get the meningitis vaccine just to be able to be enrolled in college, so this should be no different,” says Kaylie.
Different vaccines such as the meningococcal vaccination have been required in the past couple years for many reasons, most importantly for the safety of students against different meningitis types. Another added vaccine may serve as a culture shock to some, but the requirement is no different than other vaccines have been in the past.
Out of the 12% of students that answered that they were not yet vaccinated, many had different answers as to why- as well as different opinions on the state’s ability to make it a school requirement. When further asked about her opinion, Mallory Curtis- a 21-year-old SUNY student- explains her worry about what this mandate could bring.
“My opinion on the new mandate for SUNY is definitely just being worried that if they are able to force people to get something they may not want, what else are they going to force people to do? It just makes me nervous for the future,” Curtis says.
Curtis went on to explain that even though the mandate is worrisome to her, she has always planned on getting the vaccine before the new semester.
Since the news broke about the new New York COVID-19 vaccine mandate many opinions have come to light regarding what this means not only for public college students, but what it could mean for the entirety of the state’s future. Although many have already received the vaccine, many more still will need to fill their college requirements come fall semester.