CSU announces booster shot requirement for COVID-19 vaccine

The California State University is requiring everyone on campus to receive the booster shot for the COVID-19 vaccine. 

After initially requiring all students, faculty and staff to have been vaccinated, the CSU system announced the updated rules for the booster shot on Wednesday. 

Boosters will have to be received by Feb. 28, 2022, or six months after the final dose of the initial vaccine was received. 

In a statement, the CSU system – which is the largest four-year higher education institution in the nation – said each campus has the authority to require the booster shot by an earlier date for all students and non-union employees. 

“Vaccination, including a booster when eligible, remains our most effective strategy against infection and severe disease,” said CSU Chancellor Joseph Castro. 

“This is particularly important in light of the rapid rise of cases of COVID-19 throughout the state and nation as the Omicron variant spreads. Implementing the booster requirement now will help mitigate the potential spread of the variant on campuses as they repopulate in January after the winter break.” 

With 23 campuses in the system, the CSU has 56,000 faculty and staff as well as 477,000 students. 

In concurrence with the previous rules, the CSU’s COVID-19 vaccination policy grants permission for students and employees to seek exemptions based on medical and religious grounds. 

Notably, all union employees are not yet required to receive the booster shot, per the following statement from the CSU: 

“The university’s new requirement will take effect immediately upon implementation of the policy; however, represented employees will not be subject to the booster requirement until the CSU concludes its meet-and-confer process with its labor unions.”

Staff reports from The San Joaquin Valley Sun staff.