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Michigan State announces new COVID-19 policies beginning Aug. 1

News: Coronavirus Matthew Dae Smith/Lansing State Journal-USA TODAY NETWORK via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Michigan State University President Samuel L. Stanley announced late Friday afternoon new COVID-19 policies that will take effect for campus Aug. 1 and for this fall.

Following new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) related to concerns around some of the new variants of the novel coronavirus, Michigan State has brought back the mandatory mask policy for everyone regardless of vaccine status when indoors in MSU buildings or facilities. This policy will remain in effect through at least the first few weeks of the semester starting in September. Unclear is the impact this will have on fans attending the Youngstown State game on Sept. 11 as to what will be considered indoors and not.

The university also will now require COVID-19 vaccination for all students, faculty, and staff by the end of August with limited exemptions to be considered in relation to religious or medical reasons. Acceptable vaccines for students include those either approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the World Health Organization (WHO). That is an important detail for international students planning a return to campus this fall.

MSU is at least the fifth university in the Big Ten to now require COVID-19 vaccines for everyone since The Only Colors last checked prior to Big Ten Football Media Days. In-state rival Michigan had already made the decision to require vaccines for all athletes and for all students living on campus earlier this summer.