EAST LANSING, Mich. (WLNS)– Michigan State University will not require vaccinations for students next fall according to a letter sent from President Samuel Stanley Jr.

The letter also announced the university will lift most of its COVID-19 protocols immediately, excluding those within the health care settings.

This means:

  • Face masks are no longer required indoors, regardless of vaccination status.
  • MSU buildings, venues and services can operate without limitations. Buildings will return to normal public access building hours effective Aug. 1. If non-employee access is required earlier than Aug. 1, please contact Facilities Planning & Space Management.
  • Employees, students and others coming to campus no longer have to fill out the daily health screening form.
  • The COVID-19 Early Detection Program is no longer mandatory for undergraduate students. Medical professional students should contact their college about their requirements.

Stanley said the following in regards to the decision not to vaccinate, highlighting that could change if COVID-19 cases begin to surge:

As we look toward fall, MSU is not mandating COVID-19 vaccinations at this time outside of some very limited settings. However, based on the trends we will monitor over the next several weeks, including the number of COVID-19 cases and the impact of vaccinations, this could be revisited. Also, Spartans who are vaccinated, including those living in the residence halls, no longer will have to quarantine if exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19, per CDC guidance.

President Samuel Stanley Jr. in a letter sent to the MSU community

MSU was just one of two Big Ten schools that had not decided what their vaccination requirements would be when students returned to school. Penn State University is now the only one in the conference not decided.

The school joins Minnesota University, University of Wisconsin, Nebraska University, University of Purdue, University of Iowa, University of Michigan, Ohio State University in not requiring the vaccinations. The University of Michigan recently announced while they won’t require vaccinations across the board, they will require them for those living in on-campus housing.

On the other side, Northwestern University, Rutgers University, University of Maryland, Indiana University, and the University of Illinois will require masks for students planning to attend classes in person.

On Tuesday, June 22nd, the State of Michigan removed the majority of it’s COVID-19 restrictions, including all masking and gathering requirements.

“Today is a day that we have all been looking forward to, as we can safely get back to normal day-to-day activities and put this pandemic behind us,” said Governor Whitmer when announcing the move last week. “We owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to the medical experts and health professionals who stood on the front lines to keep us all safe. And we are incredibly thankful to all of the essential workers who kept our state moving. Thanks to the millions of Michiganders who rolled up their sleeves to get the safe, effective COVID-19 vaccine, we have been able to make these changes ahead of schedule. Our top priority going forward is utilizing the federal relief funding in a smart, sustainable way as we put Michigan back to work and jumpstart our economy. We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to ensure that Michigan’s families, small businesses, and communities emerge from this pandemic stronger than ever before.” 

According to data from the CDC, over 60 percent of Michiganders have gotten at least their first shot and half are fully vaccinated.