Rutgers Bans Unvaccinated Student From Attending Virtual Classes
A New Jersey student said he was banned from taking classes at Rutgers University because he has not been vaccinated for the Wuhan Coronavirus – even though he taking the classes online.
Logan Hollar, 22, told NJ.com that he largely ignored the school’s COVID mandate “because all my classes were remote” from his Sandyston home, hardly within a commutable distance at around 70 miles from Rutgers’ campus in New Brunswick.
Upon opening his computer to pay his tuition last month Hollar came to find himself locked out of his Rutgers email and other accounts and was faced with an ultimatum – get the jab or take a hike.
Since then Hollar has been forced to miss his classes that started on September 1st, and was told it could be weeks before his university’s bureaucratic administration makes a decision regarding his application for an exemption to the vaccine mandate, he said.
“I’ll probably have to transfer to a different university,” Hollar told NJ.com, saying he knows of at least one other student facing a similar position.
“I find it concerning for the vaccine to be pushed by the university rather than my doctor,” he told the outlet.
“If someone wants to be vaccinated, that’s fine with me, but I don’t think they should be pushed,” he insisted, saying he doesn’t “find COVID to be scary” because he is in good health and “not in an at-risk age group.”
“I don’t care if I have access to campus. I don’t need to be there. They could ban me. I just want to be left alone,” he said.
Hollar’s stepfather, Keith Williams told the outlet he is “dumbfounded” at Rutgers’ stance.
“I believe in science, I believe in vaccines, but I am highly confident that COVID-19 and variants do not travel through computer monitors by taking online classes,” Williams told NJ.com.
“He chose to remove himself from an on-campus experience so he would not need to be vaccinated,” Williams said, defending his stepson’s right to bodily autonomy.
“Now to be removed and shut down from his Rutgers email and online classes during the start of his senior year seems a bit crazy.”
Rutgers spokeswoman Dory Devlin offered no apologies for the vicious treatment of the student, instead making a point to say that the university has “provided comprehensive information and direction to students to meet vaccine requirements through several communications channels.”
She then noted that Rutgers’ policy differentiates between a “fully online degree-granting program” and “classes that are fully remote” but part of a course where other students may be on campus, as in Hollar’s case.
Devlin told the website that staff “continue to work” helping students apply for mandate exemptions for medical or religious reasons — while conceding they “should expect a two-to four-week turnaround, during which time they will not have access to university systems.”
“Once it is processed and verified, students are allowed access to university systems,” she said.