Screenshot from 7/21/21 zoom meeting live streamed on Youtube.

Lane Community College will require vaccinations to return to on-campus learning starting in the Fall, its board unanimously decided at Wednesday night's meeting. 

Marge Hamilton, president of LCC, said there has been extensive research put towards the recommendation to become a fully vaccinated campus, with medical and non-medical exemptions. 

“We have heard a clear and consistent message from our employee groups that they will feel safer coming back to campus if we require vaccinations,” Hamilton said. “We've heard a loud message from our students that they want to come back to campus, and would prefer to be on a campus where they feel safe to interact with their peers and their teachers.”

LCC board member Austin Folnagy said he was initially against a vaccine mandate but has come a long way after listening to the experiences of staff who worked during the pandemic. He said a fully vaccinated campus is an ideal baseline to adjust in case of more future changes.

“As we go into this year with the Delta variance and so forth, we'll be able to know what percentage of our staff and students are vaccinated, which allows us to make decisions based on what we need,” Folnagy said.

Public speakers consisted of LCC staff who spoke on behalf of themselves and their departments, all in favor of adopting the vaccination mandate for LCC this Fall.

“My answer to this is that the pandemic is not over,” said Fiora Starchild-Wolf from LCC enrollment services. “We want to support in-person classes and student services, however we need to ensure as many people as possible are fully vaccinated for everyone’s safety.”

Frankie Cocanour, medical assistant and union president for LCC Employment Federation, said “CDC guidelines provide more flexibility for fully vaccinated campuses, requiring vaccines makes good fiscal sense, and with higher class capacities and more activities.”

With a unanimous decision from the board, the next stage is to figure out a safety plan. 

Frankie Cocanour, medical assistant and union president for LCC Employment Federation, said “CDC guidelines provide more flexibility for fully vaccinated campuses, requiring vaccines makes good fiscal sense, and with higher class capacities and more activities.”

With a unanimous decision from the board, the next stage is to figure out a safety plan to reopen under the conditions of being a fully vaccinated campus.

“I couldn’t be more proud tonight as a nurse and as a president,” Hamilton said. “Thank you to the board for making this on-point decision and being the first of the community colleges.”