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May 09, 2021

Rowan University offering students incentives to get COVID-19 vaccine ahead of fall semester

School employees will also be required to get vaccinated before the 2021-22 academic year

Education Universities
Rowan University COVID-19 vaccines Thom Carroll/For PhillyVoice

Rowan University students are encouraged to submit proof of having received a COVID-19 vaccine by Aug. 7.

Rowan University will require all students and employees to receive a coronavirus vaccine before returning to campus for the 2021-22 academic year.

The COVID-19 vaccine requirement applies to all students who live on campus, in affiliated housing off-campus or attend in-person classes.

"Rowan University is committed to assisting Gov. Murphy and the state of New Jersey in achieving the goal of fully vaccinating 70% of adults," Rowan University President Dr. Ali A. Houshmand said. "We are equally committed to ensuring that our students, employees and neighbors are safe. We have worked together all year to create vibrant campuses and meaningful learning opportunities. As a University community, we must continue to work together to ensure that public health continues to improve."

But the school is offering its students a number of incentives to encourage them to roll up their sleeves and get vaccinated before coming back to South Jersey this fall. 

Full-time students who show proof of having received a COVID-19 vaccine before Aug. 7 will be eligible for a $500 credit that can be put towards their course registration bill this fall.

Residential students will receive an additional $500 credit to put towards their housing bill. Part-time students will receive a prorated credit based upon the number of courses they are taking during the fall semester.

"We believe the path to normalcy is through widespread vaccination and we want our entire community to commit to reaching the goal of widespread vaccination," Houshmand said. "If we work together, we can reach this goal and offer the Rowan University experience that we all deserve." 

Students are permitted to opt out of the COVID-19 vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. However, residential students who choose not to get vaccinated will be required to undergo weekly COVID-19 testing.

Student-athletes and those who are enrolled in majors where there is close contact may still be required to receive COVID-19 tests even if they are vaccinated.

Employee incentives are being developed in compliance with union regulations, the university said.

"Our students should not bear the burden of ensuring our community health on campus," Houshmand said. "This is shared work and only with a shared commitment to increasing vaccine acceptance among our entire community can public health be assured."

Other schools that are requiring their students to receive a COVID-19 vaccine for the fall semester include Penn and Drexel, as well as Rutgers, Stockton, Lehigh and Princeton.

All adults ages 16 and older in the U.S. now qualify for a COVID-19 vaccine. 

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