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Penn State Students Without Proof of Immunizations Can't Register for Classes

by on October 11, 2017 9:44 AM

As the process to register for classes for Penn State's 2018 spring semester gets under way, some students may find themselves, at least temporarily, locked out from picking courses.

The university is placing a registration hold on students who have not submitted mandatory proof of vaccinations starting Wednesday. It's expected to affect primarily students who are new to Penn State as of this summer or fall.

During the spring 2017 semester, Penn State's University Park campus saw an outbreak of mumps, with at least 38 suspected cases. Though some of those cases occurred in students who had the recommended dosage for measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) immunization, school health officials urged students to make sure they had received the vaccination and that they had provided the required information to the university.

In March, the university updated and simplified its submission process for required immunization information. Current students at the time were given a deadline of June 1 to ensure the information was submitted and incoming students had until Aug. 21. A verification form was provided for students to take to their health care providers then return to University Health Services through an online system. UHS staff then review and approve the verification

Students were told at the time that those who did not submit proof of vaccinations would be subject to a registration hold.

To have the registration hold removed, students will need to complete the two-step verification process and will receive a message within three days that they are in compliance.

According to the university, numerous reminders have been sent to students over the past eight months and a final warning was sent on Sept. 25 to students who were not in compliance.

All undergraduate and graduate students -- with the exception of World Campus and the Great Valley, which is primarily graduate professional studies -- are required to have MMR immunization. Students living in university housing must receive the meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MCV4).

The university also strongly recommends 

"Immunizations offer safe and effective protection from vaccine-preventable diseases and help further Penn State’s mission to provide a safe, secure and healthy learning environment to all students," the university said in a news release

Registration began Wednesday and continues through mid-November. The more credits a student has completed or in-progress, the sooner he or she can register. Most freshmen would not be able to begin registering for spring classes until November.

Geoff Rushton is managing editor for Contact him at [email protected] or find him on Twitter at @geoffrushton.
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