Harrison Paletta Talee Messenger
Equinox Staff Equinox Staff
Gov. Chris Sununu of New Hampshire has announced that all residents 16 and older are eligible for registration to get the COVID-19 vaccination. However, Sununu said “College students in NH who are from outside the state are not eligible for the vaccine here,” according to WMUR-TV.
Keene State College State Melinda Treadwell said, “The states around us are allowing in and out-of-state residents to get vaccinated. We’re working hard and I’m suspecting that our governor will agree and will get there very soon and all students at Keene State who want a vaccine can register and get one. Residency doesn’t matter, and all individuals over 16 who wish to get vaccinated, the colleges could help do that.”
As of April 2, New Hampshire residents over the age of 16 can register to receive the vaccine. On and off-campus students who are not permanent residents of New Hampshire are not currently eligible for the vaccine in the state.
Treadwell is excited about the opportunity for more students to get vaccinated but is actively working to get all students eligible. President Treadwell said, “I don’t like the residency differential, I don’t think that’s something we should be doing. What is at the root of our work with the governor is to try to say if there is enough supply let’s let anyone over 16 register. We have over 1,700 individuals who aren’t New Hampshire residents, but they’re living with us now and they’re in this community. I’d like them to be protected if they’d like to get the vaccine. I don’t like sending students home to get the vaccine into what are much higher incident states around us right now.”
President Treadwell says her argument to Sununu is that residency should not matter if the state has the supplies and resources. She also mentioned some states around us are currently allowing in and out-of-state residents to get vaccinated. Treadwell is hopeful that the opportunity for college students to be vaccinated to be allowed by the governor, but is actively looking at alternative options for out-of-state students to get vaccinated in New Hampshire.
Treadwell also said, “We issued some statements Monday night. I hope by next week, we’ll have it opened up to anyone. Will either get it or not, and if we don’t, I’m going to work on other avenues to try to insure what we can do for our out-of- state students by working with partners out of state.”
Out-of-state student David Ardolino said, “It seems unfair that I would have to drive an hour-and-a-half for my vaccine. Also seems unfair for people that live further away that would have to fly.”
Coordinator of Wellness Education at Keene State Tiffany Mathews said, “We are working with colleagues across the state to expand distribution and make the vaccine available for both our in-state and out-of-state employees and students.”
Tricia Zahn is currently Director of Community Strategic Partnerships for the Center of Population Health (CPH) at the Cheshire Medical Center. Until out of state students can be vaccinated in New Hampshire, she said, “Out-of-state KSC students could find out what the COVID-19 vaccine registration process is in their state of residency and register for a vaccine as soon as they are eligible in their respective state.”
For more information about New Hampshire’s COVID-19 vaccinations, visit vaccines.nh.gov
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