As COVID-19 vaccines are distributed to student employees and faculty members, students share how they feel about their peers being inoculated.
Bunni Lerille, a freshman in theater and anthropology, said she hopes the vaccine will begin the return to normalcy.
“I think it is great and I am extremely proud to attend a school that has valued our safety so much that we are able to gain access to vaccinating our faculty,” Lerille said. “Our school has gone through so many precautions that it is only fair that we give our hard working staff the first chance to receive the vaccine.”
Lerille said she looks forward to taking the shot as soon as it’s offered to her.
“On a grander scale, I know it is what’s needed to end the difficulties we’ve been through in the past year, and I am more than willing to serve the greater good not only for the greater good, but for myself as well,” Lerille said.
Michael Ho, junior in French and neuroscience, said he’s excited UAB is able to distribute vaccines.
“Given that UAB has become such an important medical institution in the Southeast, I think it’s amazing that we are able to live in this moment in both Birmingham and U.S. history as the vaccine is being rolled out,” Ho said.
“As I mentioned, the vaccine is not the be-all and end-all of the fight against COVID-19, but I believe that it will help UAB tremendously as we attempt to return to some sense of normal life.” Ho said. “As more and more people within the UAB and Birmingham community continue to receive their vaccinations and other COVID-19 precautions are maintained, I think that UAB will continue to make great strides in the fight against the virus heading into the rest of 2021.”
Banks Stamp, political science and public administration major, was able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine as a UAB student employee.
“The more people at UAB we can get vaccinated, the quicker we can adjust and reduce infection rates,” Stamp said. “By doing so, we will be able to lighten the load from healthcare professionals at hospitals as well as bring back a sense of normalcy to the students in the fall semester of 2021.”
Bailey Dumlao, junior in theatre performance, said he too was able to be vaccinated by working at UAB.
“The fact that UAB prioritizes and makes such ardent steps towards herd immunity within our community and beyond is a powerful public health and safety statement that I am thankful to see, even as my home state of Tennessee doesn’t quite get vaccine distribution right,” Dumlao said.
Baks Ali, masters student, said he sees the vaccine rollout as a light at the end of the tunnel.
“Frontline workers here at UAB have been working tirelessly, while many people in the community may have concerns that whether or not vaccine can protect the virus or not,” Ali said. “I think it is important to trust those people who are in-charge of creating these vaccines the same way we trust our frontline workers.”
UAB Hospital has distributed well over 60,000 total doses of the vaccine. Dr. Sarah Nafziger, vice president for UAB Hospital’s ambulatory clinic said while she is pleased with that number, the hospital is in need of more doses.
“The challenge that we continue to have is vaccine doses being available, this is not a problem unique to UAB, unique to Alabama, it’s a problem that the entire country is facing,” Nafziger said.
Jefferson county residents that are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine can click the link to register.
UAB employees that are eligible to be vaccinated have been sent an email from the university to schedule an appointment.