About half of SUNY’s 10,000 unvaccinated students have changed their minds in days since deadline


OSWEGO, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — In the five days since SUNY imposed its deadline for all students to get vaccinated, many unvaccinated students have had a change of heart to remain on campus.

System-wide, nearly 10,000 students missed this week’s vaccination deadline. Friday, the number was nearly cut in half.

SUNY Oswego’s non-compliant number dropped from 29 to 20 by Friday.

At SUNY ESF, 80 unvaccinated students dropped to 30 to close the week.

Starting the week with 58 non-compliant students, SUNY Cortland now has fewer than 20.

SUNY Oswego President Deborah Stanley attributes her staff’s personal phone calls and emails to people being reminded of the rule and changing their minds.

President Stanley says, “We’re going to talk to them. We’re going to try everything we can. It’s best for them and us, as well.”

SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras says residential students seem to be more aware of the vaccine requirement than commuter students at community colleges.

Mohawk Valley Community College had 565 students miss the deadline.

Onondaga Community College had 196 students miss the deadline, but the number improved to around 150 by week’s end.

Chancellor Malatras said, “Commuter students that go back and forth, they’re not even aware of it. They’re working parents. They’ve got jobs. They’ve got families. Now that we’ve started the deregistration process, they’re now coming in and getting vaccinated.” 

Unvaccinated students can change their mind by October 8 before being totally deregistered.

Because SUNY made the expectation clear early on, no tuitions will be refunded.

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