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University of Hawaiʻi Will Not Require COVID-19 Vaccines for Students

University of Hawaii Manoa Campus
Sophia McCullough

University of Hawaiʻi students headed to classes on campus this fall will not need to be vaccinated against the coronavirus.

That's a change in policy. The university previously said in May that students with a physical presence on any of the system's campuses would need to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

UH President David Lassner said the previous expectation was that the Food and Drug Administration would fully approve at least one vaccine by the fall semester. All the vaccines remain under emergency use authorization.

Vaccines will still be required for students living on campus and may be needed for those involved in “certain other specific activities, events and facilities,” depending on health risks," Lassner said.

"Heartened by the high rate of vaccination among students and employees, UH is confident that under new guidelines being finalized its campuses will be safe even without fully enforcing the mandate when the fall semester begins," the university said.

Lassner also said that more than 92% of UH students and 95% of UH employees across the 10-campus system have been vaccinated or plan to be, according to surveys conducted late June.

The student survey was administered to a stratified, randomized sample based on the student body size of each campus. Of the 1,212 students surveyed, 31% responded, the university said.

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