Vaccine Deadline Passes

Majority of students submitted vaccination records, face enrollment holds and inability to work in student employment

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  • Gail Mackin

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Stephen Martin, Staff Reporter

The deadline for students to submit their COVID-19 vaccination records passed on Oct. 18. As of publication, 8,561 out of approximately 10,200 total students have submitted their records. Of those who have submitted, 93.4% are vaccinated. Roughly 16% of students have not submitted records. 

Current numbers can be found online at

Staci Sleigh-Layman, executive director of HR, said that she is not concerned that students will not submit their records, as she thinks some students simply take time to get things done.

“I think there are some that get things done way ahead of time and there are some that wait til the last minute, and there are some that wait till something negative happens before they take action,” Sleigh-Layman said. “And so I just think we have to be patient with them all, because the last thing we want to do is lose people either as students or employees.”

Students who did not submit records will not be able to register for classes for the winter quarter, and registration for winter quarter opens on Nov. 8 to students. Student employees will also not be permitted to continue working for CWU unless they submit their records beginning Nov. 6. Out of 1,420 student employees, 86 have not submitted their records, 45 have requested religious accommodation, and 86 have requested medical accommodation.

1,761 staff members have submitted records, of which 92.8% are vaccinated.

Students were offered exemptions based on medical or religious reasons. For medical exemptions, students required a “Certificate of Immunization Exemption … signed by a licensed physician (MD), doctor of osteopathy (DO), nurse practitioner (NP) or physician assistant (PA),” according to the university website.

Associate Vice Provost Gail Mackin drafted the current vaccination policy with Dean of Student Success Dr. Gregory Heinselman. The policy was made with recommendations from a variety of groups on campus, as well as medical professionals.

“Our task force is made up of 20-odd individuals who represent the different governance groups across the institutions,” Mackin said. “So we had faculty senate, faculty unions, other staff and employee unions on campus. We had the ASCWU President Madeline Koval. Dr. Larson, who’s a Kittitas County Public Health Department Health Officer, he’s been instrumental in helping us understand how best to implement our policy for the safety and health well being of CWU students and faculty.”

The policy was in line with a mandate from Gov. Jay Inslee issued in July. In order to be considered a fully vaccinated campus, CWU must implement a vaccine requirement and have a system in place to verify records.

Online-only students were also required to submit records due to “data which shows that many students, even though registered only for online instruction, visit the Ellensburg campus and/or one of our eight sites and centers,” according to the university website. “We believe the best way to ensure everyone in our communities remains safe is to require a COVID-19 vaccination for all students, employees and contractors.”

Students can submit their information through Med+Proctor or through several locations on campus with their vaccination card and a photo ID.