Students speak out on swine flu

Amber Wade

Katie Peoples isn’t too worried about swine flu, the H1N1 virus.

“I feel like it’s not really around here,” said Peoples, sophomore education major. “If it were near here, I’d probably be more worried.”

Based on what has been seen at other campuses, it was expected for a case of swine flu to be found on campus about seven to 10 days after the beginning of the semester, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Web site.

There are currently no cases of swine flu at Kent State.

Seasonal flu vaccines will be available from 9 a.m. to noon and from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the following locations:

• Tuesday, Sept. 15, at Centennial B – Conference Room (enter via door facing Centennial Fields)

• Friday, Sept. 18, at Stopher Hall, Room 154 (by Area Desk)

• Tuesday, Sept. 22, at Dunbar Area Desk

• Friday, Sept. 25, at Twin Towers Lounge (by Area Desk)

“I’m concerned about it because people have died from it,” said Jaclyn Rinehart, freshman medical technologies major. “I’ve been washing my hands more and just trying to think about what I’m doing”

The need to try to prevent the spread of the virus has been emphasized by the university and the CDC. They stress the need to wash hands, avoid those who are already sick and use other sanitary practices.

“I bought Lysol to use in my dorm,” said Christine Pfaff, sophomore nutrition major. “I have hand sanitizer with me, too.”

Based on previous experiences of not having problems with seasonal flu, Pfaff said she’s not concerned about getting sick. She said she’d treat the H1N1 virus like any other illness by drinking lots of fluids and getting plenty of rest.

Despite a lack of concern about getting the H1N1 virus, Peoples would react very seriously if she got the virus.

“I’d freak out,” Peoples said. “I’d probably go to the hospital immediately.”

University health officials have expressed a desire for people to avoid contact with others if they become sick with symptoms that include sore throat, fever, weakness, coughing and lack of appetite.

Health Services is also offering seasonal flu vaccines to students and faculty to prevent spread of the seasonal flu.

President Lester Lefton sent an e-mail to students Wednesday about precautions students should take and how the University plans to deal with an outbreak of the H1N1 virus.

Some students have reacted positively to the efforts the school has put into preventing an outbreak. Rinehart said she thinks the university is putting a good effort into trying to contain the virus by keeping in contact with students and by installing hand sanitizers all over campus.

“They’re making the right precautions to let us know what could happen,” said Phantashia Hall, freshman fashion design major.

The University has been keeping students up to date with information about the flu through e-mail and through its flu website:

Contact health reporter Amber Wade at [email protected].

Where to get flu vaccines

Flu clinics for residence hall students have been scheduled at various locations on the Kent campus. According to University Health Services, residence hall students live in close proximity with others and the flu is a highly communicable disease. Students are the university’s first priority to receive the seasonal flu vaccine.

University Health Services will be offering two types of seasonal flu vaccinations: the traditional flu shot and FluMist, a nasal flu vaccine spray. The cost of the vaccination will be $12. It can be billed to the student’s account.

Residence hall students are encouraged to register in advance for a time slot by going to the following site:

For more information, visit the university’s flu preparedness Web site at