They want the shot

86% of SPU students say they will get vaccine when it becomes available

Kyle Morrison, News Editor

Infographic by Gabrialla Cockerell

COVID-19 Vaccinations have begun in the US and around the world. According to Time Magazine, about 5 million Americans have been vaccinated with the first of two doses since the roll out of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines in December. 

In the state of Washington over 100,000 individuals have received their first doses of the COVID vaccine, most of those people are first responders and nursing home residents. Governor Jay Inslee’s office, along with the Washington Department of Health, released a phased plan detailing who will get vaccinated when. According to the WDOH, individuals over the age of 70 and individuals over the age of 50 in multigenerational households will be prioritized for vaccine distribution in January.

With all this being said, it may be a while before large swaths of SPU’s student population will be allowed to receive their first dose of COVID-19 vaccines, let alone their second dose. This does not seem to have tempered the excitement though.

According to a poll of 100 on campus SPU students: 86% say they will get the vaccine when it is available for them, 9% say they are unsure, and 5% say they will not get vaccinated.

SPU students who support the vaccine said that their belief in science has given them confidence that the shot will be safe and effective. 

“I’m a science major, so I’m obviously a believer in science, so I believe in the science,” Second year Griffin Ovenell reasoned. “I trust the medical professionals.”

Students with underlying health issues also believe that it is very important to get vaccinated.

“I’m immunocompromised and I’m trying to protect myself,” third year Kayla Nasralla explained.

Some of the first members of the SPU community who will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine will be nursing students. For these individuals, receiving the vaccine is less of a choice and more of a mandate.

“I have too,” third year Liberty White said. “I’m going into the medical field and they require you to get the vaccine, so I don’t really have an option if I want to work at a hospital.”

The students who said no to taking the vaccine cited disproven information about vaccines and their ties to autism.

For those who were unsure, many of their main concerns revolved around the quick timeline upon which the vaccine was developed.

“It was very rushed, so I’m nervous about the long term effects of it,” First year Caley Rojas explained. “But more than likely I’ll probably be getting it.”

SPU Vice Provost of Students Formation and Community Engagement Jeff Jordan says that while SPU administration has had some discussions about the vaccine, it’s still too early for them to construct a concrete plan.

“At this point there’s not been any direct communication in regards to the vaccine,” Jordan said. “I know that our president has been in contact with the governor, department of health, and other higher ed leaders in regards to some of these next steps.”

According to Jordan, SPU has still not decided on whether they will require students to get the COVID vaccine in order to live on campus. SPU does require students to get vaccinated against other diseases, most notably the measles virus. 

The creation of a COVID-19 vaccine has filled many individuals across SPU and the rest of the world with hope for a possible ending to this pandemic. While a yearning to go back to some form of Pre-COVID normal is present amongst most SPU students, as was an accountability to their fellow community members. 

“I would get the vaccine because it’s smart, it’s safe, it’s the safest thing to do if it’s approved,” Second year Leah Capindo said. “You want to keep other people around you safe.”