University Kicks Off Semester with Vaccination Clinics

Goal is to make vaccine accessible and convenient for all

Lauren Bloodworth, clinical professor of pharmacy practice, administers a dose of the Pfizer vaccine to Ashlyn Strickland, a junior from Corinth, at the Johnson Commons. The university has scheduled additional vaccination clinic dates for the coming weeks to ensure that everybody has a chance to get their shot. Photo by Logan Kirkland/Ole Miss Digital Imaging Services

OXFORD, Miss. – With COVID-19 continuing to spread across the state, the University of Mississippi is working to ensure that members of the university community have plenty of opportunities to be vaccinated at convenient times and locations.

Over the course of four days near the beginning of the semester, volunteers from the School of Pharmacy administered more than 200 Pfizer vaccinations on campus to employees, students and students’ families visiting campus.

Anna Grace Hill, a communication sciences and disorders major from Falkner, stopped by one of the Pfizer vaccine clinics, held at Johnson Commons, after class and before she headed home.

“The on-campus vaccination options were so convenient,” Hill said. “I wanted to get vaccinated for the safety of myself and my family.”

Unlike the initial on-campus vaccination clinics in the spring 2021 semester, these recent clinics did not require an appointment, an adjustment that the university’s Vaccine Task Force hoped would make vaccination more convenient.

To date, the university has administered more than 5,500 vaccines to the university community. Student pharmacists have been volunteering at the on-campus vaccine clinics since they began last semester.

Lauren Bloodworth, clinical professor of pharmacy practice, has been overseeing these volunteers and the vaccine clinics on campus.

“I’m thrilled with the way our student pharmacists, faculty and staff have prioritized assisting with these vaccinations clinics to meet this critical need,” Bloodworth said.

“We’re not only administering vaccines; we’re talking with patients who have concerns, we’re educating about expectations, we’re staying a few minutes late to accommodate someone who couldn’t make it earlier. They are really committed to helping everyone on campus stay healthy.” 

To fulfill demand, the university recently scheduled an additional Pfizer vaccine clinic date for 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday (Sept. 1) at Johnson Commons. Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are also available at the University Health Center on a walk-up basis.

Donna Strum, interim dean of the School of Pharmacy, shared her gratitude for members of the pharmacy school from both the Oxford and Jackson campuses who have played a huge role in administering vaccines to people across the state.

“To see our faculty, staff and students from both our campuses play a critical role in the state’s vaccine efforts shows pharmacy’s essential role in health care,” Strum said. “It’s great to see them use their expertise to make a positive impact on public health.”

Second doses of Pfizer will be administered at Johnson Commons on Sept. 7 and 15, where people can come to get their firsts doses as well. The university also plans to hold weekly vaccination clinic at Johnson Commons starting Oct. 5 and running every Tuesday from 1 to 3 p.m. The Health Center also offers walk-in vaccinations weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Members of the campus community who still need to be vaccinated can visit the university’s vaccination webpage for information about upcoming on-campus vaccinations and where to find a vaccine elsewhere in Oxford.