Students receive COVID-19 vaccinations in the Efroymson Family Gym. Photo by Julian Cirnigliaro.
KATIE DEAN | STAFF REPORTER | firstname.lastname@example.org
On April 7-9, students received the first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine inside Hinkle Fieldhouse. The Indiana Department of Health sent an email to students on April 3 with a link to sign up for an appointment from April 7-9.
At the time of their scheduled vaccine appointment, students walked through the Efroymson Family Gym at Hinkle Fieldhouse to check in and were guided towards one of the stations to receive the vaccine.
Per CDC guidelines, students were directed to wait 15 minutes before exiting Hinkle to ensure they did not experience any adverse reactions.
Brent Rockwood, vice president, chief of staff, said that around 2,400 students indicated they would receive the vaccine through the university. For each round of the vaccine, he said the university will have 3,000 doses available for students, faculty and staff.
While the university has not made the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory, the email announcing the vaccine clinic indicated that it may become mandatory in the future. However, Rockwood said he is happy about the trajectory of students who will become vaccinated.
“The good news to me is that we’ve already had students vaccinated, right, in our College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, because they’re in the medical profession and they were already eligible,” Rockwood said. “And now, we have 2,400 students already indicated that they want the vaccine, so regardless of the requirement, we’re already making a really good first step with this vaccine clinic on campus.”
Rockwood said a majority of those administering the vaccine were Butler pharmacy students. Those who are immunization-certified qualified to volunteer.
Caiden Lukan, a P1 pharmacy student who has his vaccine certification, volunteered to administer the vaccine on April 9. Lukan said that in preparation to vaccinate students, he had to watch a video that instructed students on how to document vaccine records.
Pharmacy students were notified to sign up for shifts when the university announced the vaccine clinic would be happening. Students filled out an interest form to indicate if they wanted to administer the vaccine or assist checking students in.
Over 100 pharmacy students volunteered, which meant that some students were paired in a booth together. Lukan and his partner alternated between administering the vaccine and completing documentation halfway through their shift.
Lukan said he was happy to be a part of the vaccine clinic and make a difference in the community.
“It was a good experience,” Lukan said. “It was good to help out the Butler community and it was convenient as well since it’s on campus, which is great because it’s an easy opportunity to volunteer as a student. I’d have to say that the faculty who put it together did a great job in organizing it.”
To ensure safety, a number of precautionary measures were put into place. Before going to a designated tent, students were asked by a volunteer if they have a history of fainting when getting vaccines and if they have had reactions before. After receiving the vaccine, students waited 15 minutes before leaving to make sure they didn’t have any adverse reactions.
Lily Hall, a sophomore elementary education major, received the vaccine on April 7. She said the process was efficient and only experienced a sore arm after.
“I thought that it went really well,” Hall said. “I believe that the girl who did my vaccine was a student here at Butler and she was so nice. She was talking to me through the whole experience and just making sure that I was doing okay and that it was a really easy process.”