Mobile Sites Provide Covid Vaccines at Valencia Campuses


Alexis Carpenter

Emma Blount, 19, Valencia College student, receives the Pfizer vaccine at the East Campus vaccination site while Professor Rebecca Newman offers emotional support.

Alexis Carpenter, Reporter

Valencia College is delivering a convenient, hassle-free way for not only Valencia students and faculty, but the general public, to get vaccinated.

The East Campus vaccine site is currently offering the Pfizer vaccine to ages 12 and up. The site will be open August 30 to September 2 from 8-12.  West, Osceola, Winter Park, and Poinciana Campuses also have mobile vaccination sites as well.

Doug Thompson, project manager of the vaccine site, stated,“No insurance needed, no money needed, all you need is an ID. Quite frankly, we don’t even care (much) what ID it is.  It can be from another country; it can be from another state, just any sort of a state type ID and you can get vaccinated.”

On top of convenience, Valencia–as well as surrounding colleges–have started offering incentives for those getting the vaccine. Seminole State College is giving a $250 cash incentive to students and staff if they are vaccinated or get vaccinated. Valencia College has announced a drawing for everyone who has a vaccination card and who is registered in one class (academic credit or continuing education) regardless of whether it is online or in-person, will be eligible for the drawing.

The vaccine site has taken all precautionary measures to ensure that students, staff, and general public are safe. The sites are thoroughly cleaned every single day. The shots are administered by healthcare professionals—who are vaccinated. Social distancing is practiced, and masks are required.

Assistant Vice President of Operations, Paul Rooney, discussed the background of the vaccination site by recalling Valencia College’s good relationship with the White House after President Barack Obama’s visit to Valencia back in March 2014.”

It was an honor to have the president on Valencia’s campus. Fast forward 7 years, I received a call this past March saying that the White House would like to have a vaccination site on West Campus, and we were selected,” Rooney stated.

“(There were) four cities: Jacksonville, Miami, Tampa and Orlando selected,” Rooney added.

Rooney later stated, “One of the best things to happen was we actually hosted that FEMA site back in March for about 12 weeks or so. We were able to administer over 200,000 vaccinations during that time. We were second behind Miami, followed by Tampa, and finally Jacksonville.”

Valencia College does not currently require their students, faculty, or staff to be vaccinated. However, vaccines, as well as masks, are strongly encouraged. Valencia’s vaccine requirement is subject to change just like so many components throughout this pandemic. As Rooney stated, “The two words that come to mind during Covid are (to be) fluid and patient.”