COLLEGE STATION — An elected student officer from Turning Point USA at Texas A&M reached out to Texas Scorecard, reporting that he and many of his fellow student officers are facing persecution at the hands of their university.

TAMU began requiring all returning and new students to be tested for COVID-19 earlier this semester. The university set a deadline for all students to be tested by September 10, 2021. However, some students felt no need to be tested since they exhibited no symptoms or because they had previously been diagnosed with and recovered from COVID-19.

Those students waited for the sanctions threatened by the university for more than a month. This week, letters from the university started going out. Students who refused to get tested were tracked down by the University Student Conduct Office and slapped with sanctions that will place them on conduct probation.

The following excerpt was pulled directly from a letter sent to TAMU students who did not get tested for COVID by September 10:

Conduct Probation through Friday, March 11, 2022. This is an official warning that your conduct is in violation of Texas A&M University Student Rules, but is not sufficiently serious to warrant expulsion or suspension. If there is a finding of responsibility for subsequent violations of the student rules during this period of time, more severe sanctions may be administered. A student on conduct probation is deemed “not in good standing” with the University, resulting in ineligibility to hold an officer position in a Recognized Student Organization or to represent the University in an official capacity.

The letter further explains that students who did not get tested were in violation of two university statutes; one statute commands students comply with university policy, and one dictates students compliance when commanded by a university official. The primary consequence of failing to obey the university in this instance is losing “good standing” with the school, which forces a student to forfeit any elected officer positions in student organizations. 

“Myself, along with most of my team, never did, nor do we want to [get tested for COVID], and now we are getting close to losing our ‘good standing’ status, which would also require us to step down,” said one Turning Point USA student officer at Texas A&M. “This is preventing students from being involved at their university and is a clear infringement of their personal rights.”

The letter sent to violating students can be viewed here.

Griffin White

After graduating high school with an associates degree in fine arts, Griffin chose to seek experience in his field of interest rather than attend university. He describes himself as a patriotic Fort Worth native with a passion for cars and guitars. He is now a fellow for Texas Scorecard.