LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- The Nevada Board of Health unanimously approved a measure to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine for Nevada System of Higher Education students.
After about four hours of public comment, the board of health had a quick discussion before voting unanimously to mandate COVID-19 vaccines on NSHE's campuses, which include UNLV, UNR and College of Southern Nevada.
State health officials said students would have to show proof of vaccination by Nov. 1 in order to enroll for Spring 2022 semester classes.
Gov. Steve Sisolak had previously urged the board to consider mandatory vaccinations for college students amid a surge of the delta variant. In a letter to the NSHE Chancellor, the NSHE COVID-19 Task Force said they "unanimously recommend" that a COVID-19 vaccine be required as soon as possible.
We want to thank the Board of Regents and the many students, faculty and staff who took the time to observe and participate in today’s State Board of Health meeting. We have a shared commitment to our collective health and safety.
We also want to thank the medical and health experts on the State Board of Health for convening to discuss matters of public health for the Nevada System of Higher Education. We will faithfully move forward with implementing the new guidelines approved at today’s meeting within the suggested time frame.
As part of NSHE’s return to in-person learning, each institution is working with their local medical leaders and health districts to regularly host free COVID-19 vaccination clinics on campus, as capacity allows, throughout the fall semester.
In the meantime, the current mask mandate remains in place as an additional form of protection for our community.
The health and wellbeing of Nevada’s public higher education community and the safe return to in person learning for NSHE’s students, faculty, and staff continues to be our highest priority.
- Board of Regents Chair Cathy McAdoo and NSHE Chancellor Melody Rose
Jason Geddes, an NSHE regent for District 11, advocated in favor of the mandate. He argued that the delta variant is proving too big of a threat to students and staff, considering the unique nature of the college experience.
"The campus is a very interactive place," Geddes said. "Classroom learning is a significant component of it, but it's also just interacting with friends and classmates, in your program and in other programs, whether it's in the dormitory, or the cafeteria, or just wandering around the quad, in the library."