LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Transylvania University announced Wednesday afternoon they will require COVID-19 vaccines for students and employees.
Ahead of the university's August 30 start date, Transylvania updated its Healthy at Transy guidelines for the 2021-22 academic school year with the requirement that all students and employees need to be fully vaccinated by Oct. 13.
"The university’s full policy will be released in the coming week, including information on requesting an accommodation or exemption. Exemptions for all individual requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
A two-day COVID vaccine clinic is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 28 and 29, from noon to 5 p.m. in Room 149 of the William T. Young Campus Center. The clinic will offer the Pfizer vaccine to anyone aged 12 and older, including local community members and Transylvania students, staff, faculty, alumni and family. To schedule an appointment, go to kyvax.wildhealth.com and select the Transylvania University link."
"I'm kind of glad they've done it," junior Matthew Mims said. "It's very important in protecting myself, protecting others and keeping us as a campus healthy."
Elizabeth Sabourin, also a junior, agreed. She said that a vaccine requirement will help protect some of the most vulnerable on campus.
"There is bound to be someone who's immunocompromised who can't have access to the vaccine who will then be more protected because everyone else is vaccinated," she said.
LEX 18 did encounter one student who took issue with the university's announcement.
"I feel like it should be up to someone if they want to get something put in their body or not," said freshman Ryan Gisler, 18, who is not vaccinated against COVID-19.
Gisler said he has not decided whether he will get the vaccine, in light of the announcement.
"I don't know what to do, you know?" he said. "I really kind of am against [taking the vaccine], but I don't know if I have a choice anymore."
President Brien Lewis notes the Healthy at Transy guidelines continue to be based on advice recieved directly from public health experts, including the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department and Kentucky Department for Public Health. They are also based on public health guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the medical and public health experience of individual advisers working with Transylvania.