DECORAH, Iowa (KWWL) -- Luther College has joined the "COVID-19 College Vaccine Challenge" in an effort to get more students, faculty, and staff vaccinated against COVID-19.
The initiative is led by the White House and the U.S. Department of Education and asks colleges and universities to do three things:
- Engage every student, faculty and staff member and ensure every community member knows they're eligible for a vaccine and where to get one.
- Identify "champions" for vaccine efforts across campus and implement a plan to get as many campus community members vaccinated as possible.
- Provide vaccine access and make it easy for students, faculty, and staff to get vaccinated at sites near them this summer.
Luther joins more than 600 colleges and universities across the U.S. taking part in the challenge.
"Luther College is proud to be joining this national effort to get campus communities vaccinated across the United States," President Jenifer K. Ward said. "These action steps are already proving to be effective, as we have officially hit our summer vaccination goal. We know that vaccines are safe and effective, and because the Luther community has been proactive about getting their shots, we are well on our way to hitting our fall target as well."
As of Tuesday, 71% of the summer campus community has voluntarily provided proof of vaccination and none of Luther's COVID-19 Indicators were activated, which means mandates for face masks and physical distancing on campus were lifted. Last month, Luther College announced it would move to Alert Level 0: Blue (Normal) when no COVID-19 indicators are activated and 70% of the campus community has voluntarily provided proof of vaccination for COVID-19.
As of Tuesday, 48% of the anticipated fall campus population had voluntarily submitted proof of vaccination. The college will determine whether or not to implement COVID-19 mitigation measures for the academic year, such as face masks and social distancing, by August 1. Decisions will be based on vaccination rates and COVID-19 indicators.
The college publishes weekly updates on vaccination status and COVID cases on campus. As of Tuesday, the college reported just 1 active case on campus, an employee, and no students in isolation or quarantine.