Any Brandon University student or staff member still looking to get immunized against COVID-19 by September will get their chance, since school officials are setting up some walk-in vaccine clinics during the first week of the upcoming fall semester.
According to a Monday news release from BU, these vaccination clinics will be available at the university’s Harvest Hall throughout Sept. 7 (9-11 a.m.), Sept. 8 (from 1-3 p.m.), and Sept. 9 (from 9-11 a.m.) thanks to the school’s partnership with Prairie Mountain Health.
Both first and second doses will be available on site.
BU employees have the option of using paid time to attend COVID-19 vaccine appointments and draw on sick time or other balances to cover potential side-effects.
School instructors are also being encouraged to be flexible with students who received their vaccine and are experiencing side-effects from their shot.
This news comes four days after BU administration announced they are in the process of developing a vaccine policy for the 2021-22 academic year.
While Thursday’s announcement was short on details, the official statement from BU said the university intends to "move towards being a campus that is as fully-vaccinated as possible."
The statement also clarified that BU officials will not require all staff and students to be vaccinated for the beginning of the fall term to attend in-person activities on campus.
However, over the next couple of weeks, the university administration will be further developing their vaccine policy to nail down certain logistical questions, like "when is the most appropriate deadline to begin requiring a vaccine?"
Outside of these new walk-in vaccine clinics, BU is also incentivizing staff and students to get vaccinated through their "Winning Shot" contest, in which participants can enter to win up to $5,000 in prizes by providing proof of their full vaccination status.
Otherwise, BU officials are getting ready for the widespread return of in-person classes this coming fall, when activities will be limited to 25 people or less, with all other courses taking place online.
Plus, staff and students attending on-campus activities will be required to wear a mask and physically distance.
In an opinion piece published in Saturday’s edition of The Brandon Sun, BU president David Docherty emphasized how seriously his administration is taking their new vaccine policy, writing that "vaccination(s) for faculty, staff and students will be the expectation moving forward."
"How we get there, and how we answer the many logistical questions like the ones above, may differ in the details from other places," Docherty wrote. "But those answers are being determined right now, by caring people right here in Brandon, as we build the best solution for BU."
» The Brandon Sun