INDIANAPOLIS — Starting March 31, anyone 16 and older can get a COVID-19 vaccine in Indiana. But does that include college students who are not from Indiana? It’s one of the most popular questions 13News viewers have been asking this week.
“My daughter is from North Carolina, and she is a full-time, residential student at Butler University. May she get a covid vaccine in Indiana?” Susan Wooster asked the 13News VERIFY Team.
“Can a student going to college in Indiana receive the (COVID-19) shot here in Indiana or do they have to wait until they return to their home state?” wrote another viewer.
- Indiana State Department of Health
- Indiana University
- Butler University
- Purdue University
- Ball State University
- University of Notre Dame
What we found
Indiana colleges enroll nearly 460,000 students, and many of them are from out of state.
The Indiana State Department of Health announced Wednesday afternoon that it will no longer require proof of residency for someone to receive a COVID-19 vaccine in Indiana. Being at least 16 years old is the only requirement now in place for those wanting a vaccine.
So we can verify, yes, college students are eligible to get a COVID-19 vaccine in Indiana—even if they are not from this state.
Earlier this week, ISDH spokeswoman Megan Wade-Taxter told 13News VERIFY, “Plans to vaccinate students attending college in Indiana on their campus are currently being developed … A student being vaccinated on campus would be eligible regardless of their permanent residency.”
Some universities are about to open those special vaccination clinics for students.
13News contacted a number of area colleges and universities to learn more about their vaccination clinic plans. Their responses are below:
Butler spokesman Mark Apple told VERIFY, “We were informed by the State late last week that we are getting an allotment of Pfizer vaccine with the goal of vaccinating as many students as possible by the end of the semester."
He said the first dose will be offered at Butler next week and the second dose will be available in early May after final exams, adding that both out-of-state and international students are eligible to get a coronavirus shot.
Indiana University and IUPUI
Indiana University director of media relations Chuck Carney offered this information to 13News:
“We are working with the state to get access to the vaccine for our students, faculty and staff. We don’t have a confirmed date but we’re hopeful for clinics at both Bloomington and IUPUI campuses. Of course we have opened our ‘open pod’ vaccination site at Assembly Hall, which will be open to anyone in Indiana 16+ starting tomorrow [March 31].”
Officials at Notre Dame expect to receive enough Pfizer vaccine from ISDH within the coming weeks to vaccinate all students by the end of the spring semester. Details of the on-campus COVID-19 vaccine clinic are still being worked out. Notre Dame faculty and staff are encouraged to get vaccinated at other locations in the community.
Purdue plans to open a vaccination clinic for its students next week at the Cordova Recreational Sports Center. If the university receives its supply of vaccine quickly, the clinic could open as soon as this weekend. Students will have access to the vaccine clinic regardless of their in-state or out-of-state residency.
Because Ivy Tech does not have dorms and on-campus housing like other state universities, it is handling vaccine clinics differently, according to Ivy Tech Community College Vice President for Marketing and Communication Jeff Fanter.
“We have been partnering with the state offering clinics for some time including our Sellersburg campus,” he said. “But being a commuter campus without residence halls we are not currently setting up clinics like some of the four-year residential campuses might be… we will continue our practice of partnering with various groups throughout the state to offer clinics [at] our campuses."
Ball State has had an on-campus clinic for more than a week and will begin offering its students access to that clinic starting today (March 31).
According to Ball State VP of Marketing and Communications Kathy Wolf:
“As eligibility requirements change, we encourage our students who wish to be vaccinated to use our clinic for convenience. However, we also want our students to get vaccinated as soon as they are eligible at the most convenient vaccine site of their choice. We will increase our vaccine clinic capacity in response to the demand from our students. We anticipate additional vaccine doses from the Delaware County Health Department so that we can increase our clinic’s capacity to vaccinate with additional appointment slots. Anyone who is eligible can use the COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Ball State University, which opened on March 19. That includes in-state and out-of-state students, faculty and staff, and members of our community.”
University of Indianapolis
UIndy has plans to offer the Johnson & Johnson vaccine to a limited number of students, faculty, and staff beginning April 20.
"The University has been working closely with the State of Indiana to bring this vaccine clinic to our campus, and we are pleased to partner with the state so that we may host the clinic next week," the school said in a statement to 13News.