COLLEGE STATION, TX—in an internal meeting Tuesday, November 2nd, Texas A&M announced its intent to mandate vaccines for some employees and students, an A&M employee, who wished to remain anonymous, told The Texas Horn. The mandate likely violates Governor Abbott’s executive order preventing public institutions such as Texas A&M from mandating the COVID-19 vaccine for employees.
The Vaccine mandate appears only to apply after December 8th to any employee who worked on a new or renewed federal contract or comes into close contact with such an employee. As such, it would only affect students who held jobs at the university. A&M has approximately $2 billion worth of federal contracts, which they would risk losing if they fail to comply with the mandate.
A&M Vice Chancellor Laylan Copelin went on WTAW to discuss the vaccine mandate, saying that the Biden vaccine mandate forced their hand. The 5th circuit stayed the administration’s vaccine mandate last Friday, but A&M does not appear to have changed its policy.
When reached for comment, the A&M Associate Vice President for the Division of Marketing and Communications told The Texas Horn that “the requirement applies only to those associated with federal contracts and their worksite locations.The president’s order states that affected employees must show proof of vaccination, getting a vaccination or request a medical or religious exemption… the system’s notification will come as a federal contract begins or is renewed.” At the time of publishing, A&M has yet to return a request for comment on whether they will change their decision regarding the recent 5th circuit ruling.
The A&M vaccine mandate likely violates Governor Greg Abbott’s executive order prohibiting public universities, among other institutions, from creating vaccine mandates.
Charles Jackson Paul is the Editor-Emeritus of The Texas Horn. He is a fourth-year student in the McCombs School of Business studying finance and minoring in business analytics. He is also pursuing a certificate in Core Texts and Ideas as a member of the Jefferson Scholars Program. Jackson has a passion for writing and hopes that his work as both a writer and an editor can encourage dialogue about complex issues. Outside of his classes and writing, Jackson enjoys reading, hiking, ballroom dancing, and spending time with friends.