Student vaccination awareness effort launched May 13, 2021 Contact: Leah C. Payne, Director of Communications, 304-696-7153 Marshall University has introduced a public awareness campaign for its student population, encouraging them to obtain a COVID-19 vaccination in an effort to reach #thunderingherdimmunity when the fall semester begins in August. The hashtag #thunderingherdimmunity plays off the medical term and Marshall’s sports teams. “We are strongly advising students to get vaccinated,” said Marshall President Dr. Jerome A. Gilbert. “If we reach herd immunity, we will be in much better shape this fall. The goal is for everyone to be safe and healthy and the best way to do that is to be vaccinated.” Students who have not yet been vaccinated are encouraged to get a vaccine during the summer months in their home communities. The university is requiring that all students register their status through Marshall’s student online COVID-19 vaccination registry at www.marshall.edu/coronavirus. The data will be made available in aggregate form to members of the COVID-19 Health and Safety Task Force, who will use the information to help drive pandemic policy and health projections. Marshall employees have already exceeded the herd immunity threshold designated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Marshall’s office of human resources reports that approximately 80% of Marshall’s faculty and staff have received the vaccine, most of them immunized through the university’s onsite vaccine clinics this spring. Marshall is not requiring vaccinations at this time, although the evolving coronavirus and its variants could dictate the requirement in the coming months. University students who are not vaccinated will be required to complete saliva surveillance testing on a regular basis this fall. Additionally, they will be subject to quarantine if they get the virus or are exposed to someone who has COVID-19. Marshall’s public awareness campaign, #thunderingherdimmunity, includes delivering vaccination messages through myMU—Marshall’s intranet, social media, direct e-mail messages and printed materials. For more information about the university’s response to COVID-19, visit www.marshall.edu/coronavirus.