Valencia College’s West Campus Will Serve As a New Federal COVID-19 Vaccination Center


Valencia College

Parking Lots of the West Campus where the vaccination tent will be set up.

Gabriela Pasqualin, Editor-in-chief

As of March 3, the Valencia College West Campus parking lot will operate 7 days per week, 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., as a new federal coronavirus vaccination center. The goal is to get the shot to those who are most vulnerable.

The announcement was made on February 19 by Governor Ron DeSantis. In addition to the Orange County Valencia campus in Orlando, three other places were selected in Florida, in Miami, Tampa, and Jacksonville.

“Valencia is truly honored to be chosen as the only Federal site planned for Orange County and as one of four planned for the entire State”, says Paul Rooney, Assistant Vice President of Operations of Valencia College.

The vaccination site must remain on campus for at least eight weeks and administer 2,000 doses a day. Additionally, each site will have two smaller, mobile satellite sites that will conduct 500 vaccinations per day in underserved areas. “Valencia Staff have teamed up with our Federal and State Emergency Management partners to assist with the planning of the site and all of the logistics involved including but not limited to the security, placement of the tent (size of a football field), traffic flow and communication to our students, faculty, and staff “, says Rooney.

To ensure the safety of students, professors, and staff who are attending the campus during this time, the planning is that the vaccination site is to be set up in parking lots E, F, and G on the West Campus and that there is no contact with the individuals working in the vaccination area. These professionals will not use any indoor facilities while on campus, including bathrooms, and will provide their own security, energy, and other necessary resources within assigned parking lots.

“I received an email from Valencia explaining that the campus would be one of the vaccination sites in Florida and I felt very happy and excited that my college would help in this important moment to contain the pandemic”, says Thalita Gouveia Gonçalves, 21, majoring in Architecture. “I only have one class per week on campus and it is very empty. There is plenty of space in the parking lots. I believe that traffic will not be a problem for us,” Gonçalves compliments.

Although Valencia College will host and work in partnership, the college will not be involved with the operations (setup, determining eligibility, scheduling, etc.) or administration of the vaccines. The entire operation will be run by state and federal teams in designated parking areas. “At this point, there have not been any requests for volunteers such as students to assist with this endeavor. However, we do encourage our students to share that Valencia will be a vaccination site with others including their own family members that meet the requirements for the vaccine,” adds Rooney. To pre register with the statewide system, you can visit