VACCINE TEAM: UWSP helps vaccinate eligible students

Published: Apr. 5, 2021 at 8:52 PM CDT
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STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAW) - With Gov. Evers opening up eligibility to anybody over the age of 16 starting April 5, the entire UWSP student body is eligible. That also means UWSP’s vaccine doses are available to all current students and staff.

Through last week, the university has distributed 1,097 vaccines to eligible student workers and faculty members.

“There’s definitely been a lot of excitement as the eligibility has opened up,” Student Miranda Lang said.

For a population that has seen many precautions throughout the school year, they can see light at the end of the tunnel.

Dr. Helen Luce, the medical director of the student health center, says spots were highly sought after.

“As soon as we opened it, it was basically filled,” Dr. Luce said.

The campus started distributing the vaccine on March 1. Initially, only a small amount of doses were available.

“When we had only 100 doses for the week, they filled up within 5 minutes or less,” Dr. Luce said.

In the weeks that followed, vaccination doses administered per week have tripled.

“To see people get this excited about getting vaccinated and hopefully moving toward a more normal campus life, it’s just very exciting,” Dr. Luce said.

“Everybody just wants to kind of return to somewhat of a normal way of life,” Lang said.

Lang was vaccinated in January due to working in the medical field. But her friends have talked positively about the vaccine.

“It’s nice to hear that they aren’t doing it for themselves either, they are doing it to keep other people as students safe,” Lang said.

Dr. Luce backed her comment.

“They’re looking out, not just for their own self, their safety and their own health, but their safety and their pointer community,” she added,

She says 50% of faculty and staff have either been vaccinated at UWSP or reported to the university that they’ve received the vaccine.

While the university has a limited amount of doses available, they will distribute what they can for the rest of the semester

“For right now, we’ll keep going and we’ll see how it goes,” Dr. Luce said.

The on-campus resident’s COVID-19 testing will still be required whether students have the vaccine or not. That may change in the near future, but it remains the policy for now. Masking and other precautions will remain in place for the remainder of the semester.

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