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MSU to implement keycard access, lifts COVID vaccine requirements

MSU Sign
Amanda Barberena

Updated on Wednesday, March 1 at 4:30 p.m. ET

Buildings on Michigan State University's campus will require keycard access in the evenings. That’s in response to a mass shooting more than two weeks ago where three students were killed and five were hospitalized.

MSU Police Chief Marlon Lynch made the announcement at a University Council meeting Tuesday. The University Council includes members of the Faculty Senate, student representatives, the president, and the provost.

"Monday through Friday, from 6 p.m. to 7:30 a.m., buildings will be restricted to Spartan ID card access only," he said." On the weekends, those buildings will be closed 24/7."

The changes will begin March 13.

Lynch adds that the university plans to install additional cameras on campus, as well as implement active violent intruder training. Some buildings, like the Wharton Center for Performing Arts and others that are generally open to the community at large, will not be affected by these restrictions.

According MSU spokesperson Dan Olsen, buildings will be closed weekends but people with a Spartan ID keycard should be able to access them accordingly.

Full details are still being worked out. Olsen adds university officials also plan to outfit every classroom on campus with locks by the fall semester.

“The university has about 1,300 classrooms across campus and we will begin outfitting those classrooms with appropriate lock systems that allow instructors to secure their classrooms from inside, while also maintaining building and fire code compliance,” Olsen said.

Olsen says the changes will be implemented by Fall of 2023.

The university is also planning to hire an outside firm to investigate MSU’s response to the shooting. The firm’s findings will be released to the public once they have been completed.

MSU Interim President Teresa Woodruff also announced during the University Council meeting that COVID-19 vaccinations will no longer be a campus requirement.

Speaking at the virtual meeting, Woodruff said the pandemic has shifted from an acute public health crisis to more of a personal health responsibility.

"This is something that the federal government and the CDC have also recognized in their response to the situation," she said. "So effective today, MSU will no longer require the COVID 19 vaccine for our university commit community."

It’s been nearly three years since the university made the decision to require all students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated against COVID.

As WKAR's Bilingual Latinx Stories Reporter, Michelle reports in both English and Spanish on stories affecting Michigan's Latinx community.
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