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Biden Administration Launches COVID-19 College Challenge to Get More Young People Vaccinated

A pharmacy student administers the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at the Christine E. Lynn Rehabilitation Center in Jackson Memorial hospital on Thursday, April 15, 2021, in Miami. (WILFREDO LEE/AP)

The Biden administration has launched an initiative called the COVID-19 College Challenge for colleges and universities to encourage their students, faculty and staff to get vaccinated against the coronavirus.

Any college or university is able to sign up for the challenge and have their institution added to the White House’s list of challenge participants, which currently includes several hundred colleges across 46 states and Washington, D.C.

By adding themselves to the list, the institutions commit to ensuring every member of their college community has information about vaccine eligibility and site locations, implementing a plan to get as many people vaccinated as possible, and providing accessible vaccine sites near their community.

The administration plans to provide resources for institutions to help them meet their commitment. It also plans to work with high-enrollment community colleges to establish on-site vaccination clinics in partnership with federal retail pharmacy partners.

The hope is the challenge will help the United States meet President Biden’s goal of having 70 percent of adults vaccinated with at least one dose by July 4.

“The College Vaccine Challenge is a terrific way for all postsecondary institutions to engage students, faculty, and staff in an effort to keep their communities safe,” Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said in a statement. “We must all work together to beat this pandemic and put the focus back on students’ educational careers that will put them on the path to success.”

By Alexis Gravely

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