Mandates drive up vaccinations at colleges, despite leniency

Universities that adopted COVID-19 vaccine mandates this fall have seen widespread compliance. That’s true even though many schools made it easy to get out of the shots by granting exemptions to nearly any student who requested one. Colleges have tread carefully because forcing students to get the vaccine when they have a religious or medical objection could put schools into tricky legal territory. There are added concerns on some campuses that taking a hard line could lead to a drop in enrollment. Some universities have seen nearly complete compliance, including at state flagship schools in Maryland, Illinois and Washington. That helps avoid large outbreaks like those that disrupted classes a year ago.