‘WSU has an obligation to serve the public’: WSU President reaffirms vaccine policy as coach Rolovich opts out of shot

PULLMAN, Wash. — WSU President Kirk Schulz issued a statement reaffirming the school’s vaccine policy, just hours after football coach Nick Rolovich announced he chose not to get vaccinated.

“Washington State University expects all students, faculty, staff and volunteers to be fully vaccinated before the start of the fall semester,” wrote Schulz.

Schulz issued the statement just hours after WSU head football coach Nick Rolovich announced he did not get the vaccine. Rolovich will attend the upcoming Pac-12 Football Media Day remotely, as people attending in-person are required to be vaccinated.

RELATED: WSU Coach Nick Rolovich: ‘I have elected not to receive the COVID-19 vaccine’

Rolovich said his reasons for not getting the vaccine are private, and Schulz noted the school’s policy allows for exemptions, though people who opt out will need to wear masks and socially distance.

The full statement reads as follows:

“Washington State University expects all students, faculty, staff and volunteers to be fully vaccinated before the start of the fall semester. As the state’s land-grant research university, WSU has an obligation to serve the public good and promote the health and safety of its communities. The science clearly shows that the COVID-19 vaccine nearly eliminates the chances of death or serious illness related to a COVID-19 infection and is a critical element in protecting public health locally and worldwide.

“Washington State University respects the right of individuals to decide whether to get vaccinated. WSU has instituted an exemption process for those who have medical or non-medical reasons for not receiving the vaccine.

“Those requesting an exemption will be required to wear a mask and maintain physical distancing and may be subject to other public health measures when on WSU property.”

RELATED: WSU to require students, employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19