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Northwestern University will require students to be vaccinated against COVID-19 next school year
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Northwestern University will require students to be vaccinated against COVID-19 next school year

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Illinois lawmakers are considering a bill that would make sure every student in the state learns the history of Asian Americans in the U.S. 

Northwestern University announced Wednesday that students will be required to have the COVID-19 vaccine next academic year.

In a letter to the school community, administrators wrote the decision was made as confidence in the vaccine's effectiveness has increased and the supply has grown to meet the demand in Illinois.

"COVID-19 vaccines are the most important tool to help end the pandemic, and requiring students to be vaccinated will best support the health of our community and position us for in-person classroom and co-curricular activities for the Fall Term," the administrators wrote.

Already, university officials estimate that more than 75% of Northwestern's student body is "fully vaccinated or in the course of vaccination," according to the letter.

Those who cannot receive the vaccine due to medical or religious reasons can seek an exception to the requirement, according to the letter. Those who are not vaccinated and do not have an exception will not be allowed to register for fall classes.

International students who aren't able to receive a vaccine in their home countries can sign up to be vaccinated once they arrive on campus, according to the letter. Faculty and stuff are currently not required to be vaccinated.

All students still must continue COVID-19 testing through the remainder of the spring semester, according to the letter. Students now take at least two tests per week.

Meanwhile, in line with state guidance, Northwestern has relaxed mask requirements for those who are outside unless they are attending a large group or event.

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Northwestern joins a list of area schools that includes DePaul University, Columbia College Chicago and University of Notre Dame in requiring students to be vaccinated next fall.

According to a list maintained by the Chronicle of Higher Education, at least 341 college campuses in the U.S. will require students or employees to be vaccinated before fall.

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