Berea College sets vaccination plan, details for fall return to campus

BEREA, Ky. (WTVQ/Berea Public Affairs) – Administrators at Berea College have announced that in-person instruction, student labor, and other educational activities will resume on campus during the fall term.

Now that vaccines are widely available in Kentucky and other states from which Berea’s students come, members of Berea’s campus community can be vaccinated this spring or summer. As a result, Berea is implementing a vaccination policy for students returning campus for the fall 2021 term.

“Throughout this current academic year, we sought to protect the health of our campus community,” said Berea College President Lyle Roelofs. “We implemented a successful combination of physical distancing, masking, restricting travel away from campus along with other new policies that resulted in a minimal number of positive COVID-19 cases. For the upcoming academic year, Berea will continue to protect the health of the College community through COVID-19 vaccinations.”

The vaccination policy was developed after surveying students, staff, and faculty who provided helpful input in the decision-making process.

Consideration for specific exemptions for approved medical and religious reasons will be accommodated, but the expectation is that Berea’s campus and classrooms will overwhelmingly be populated by vaccinated individuals, greatly reducing the risk of infection for all.

Enrolled students who do not wish to be vaccinated for other reasons can select from a limited list of online courses to allow them to make some academic progress toward their degree remotely.

However, since they will not be on campus, they cannot participate in Berea’s Labor Program.

Any first-year students who choose not to be vaccinated will be offered a deferment, and other students will be able to take or extend a leave of absence if they do not wish to take courses online.

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