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DALLAS — A new state law for college students might stop some incoming freshmen from moving on campus.

The law requires all new or transfer students living on campus to get vaccinated against meningitis, a disease often spread in college dorms. More than 10 percent of people who contract the disease die — often within hours.

Lucy Andrews and Brittany Tanner are both incoming SUM freshman from Florida, but they are aware of the Texas law requiring a meningitis vaccine.

“We read it online like at the SMU Web site, and I got it this summer,” Tanner said.

SMU officials have launched an online, e-mail and snail mail campaign alerting incoming students about the rule. Students who live on-campus must get the meningitis shot at least ten days before moving in, because it takes time for immunity to build up.

SMU medical director Dr. Peter Davis confirms that students who show up without the shot will be turned away. “They would generally have to wait 10 days, and that’s not unique to SMU,” he said. “That’s for all colleges.”

College officials hope to avoid the need to send students to nearby hotels by getting the word out now, before the freshman class arrives.