I might be starting to sound like a broken record. I’ve written about why I think masks should stay on, what the deal is with COVID at Fairfield University, and even about testing procedures after Thanksgiving break. Back in March of this year, after practicing social distancing and mask wearing for a whole year since the onset of the pandemic, I caught COVID. Granted, that was right before the vaccine became available to all who wanted it, so there wasn’t much else I could do to protect myself.

But now, even after the vaccine is publicly available, we all have the opportunity to give ourselves an extra layer of protection from COVID-19 in the form of a booster shot that we did not have a year ago. Fairfield University is hosting a booster and vaccine clinic on Dec. 10 in partnership with Griffin Hospital. This provides students with the perfect opportunity to get their booster.

And what better time to get the booster shot than now, with the Omicron variant of the virus picking up serious steam around the world just this week?

I should acknowledge that I think Fairfield has done an incredible job this year of handling COVID-19, and I think that our vaccination rate on campus is actually a really good sign. Breakthrough COVID cases, however, which are cases of COVID-19 that are contracted by fully vaccinated individuals, have been running rampant, which has been causing some people to lose faith in the vaccines that they received. 

We cannot let up now. We’ve made it this far as a country through this pandemic, with most people electing to do their duty in getting the vaccine. In order to really try and get through this new phase of the pandemic, we need to get the new shot.

According to an article by CNN, the definition of being “fully vaccinated” is being moved up to three doses. The former definition of being fully vaccinated meant you had two doses of the vaccine, but as the booster shot to the Moderna and Pfizer vaccine becomes available, this definition is changing.

Another thing I would like to acknowledge is that the side effects of the vaccine are not fun to deal with; after my second shot, I felt pretty tired and it felt like I had a cold. Like I said, it’s not fun- and I understand this. Many people don’t want to be knocked out for a day, because we all lead busy lives and have things to do on a daily basis. But consider the long term: is sacrificing one day more important than the health of the whole nation? In my own opinion, I am putting the health of the general public over one day of feeling crappy every single time.

If Fairfield University students don’t do their part in getting fully vaccinated, I am worried that we might be finding ourselves in a similar situation as last year, where fairly strict COVID-19 directives were put into place and some freedoms that we are seeing this year were limited. 

Obviously, it is up to your own discretion if you want to get the booster shot; I cannot force anyone to go out and do that, I am merely writing this to give my opinion on how the rest of the pandemic should play out from a more local point of view. If it is something that interests you, however, Fairfield University is hosting a booster clinic on Dec. 10, 2021, which I think is a great opportunity to give yourself an extra shield against the virus ahead of yet another COVID-filled winter. 

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