Caldwell, N.J., Jan. 14, 2021- Caldwell University nursing and public health students are getting a front-row seat for the administration of the COVID-19 vaccines. Some have been volunteering over winter break working with nursing professors at vaccine sites. Others will work at the sites in the spring semester.
Ryan Rutano, a junior in the nursing program, volunteered at the West Caldwell site. Among his duties, he monitored patients after they received the injections and gave out information about the V-safe after-vaccination health checker, a smartphone-based tool. He was thrilled to put in action “the communication skills and medicine administration” he learned in class.
More than 40 nursing students, six a day, have been serving in the clinics. Assistant Professor of Nursing Jennifer Rhodes, DNP has been overseeing the student program at the sites and is impressed with how Caldwell students are eager to participate. She and the students were happy to see the health care professionals who have been on the front lines serving COVID patients get their shots. “With what they have had to endure, the least we can do is support them,” said Rhodes.
Kathleen Boreale, Ph.D., assistant professor of nursing, Bettina Eulie, instructor of nursing, and Dorothy Kozlowski, nursing adjunct lecturer, have also been leading the students at the sites.
Rutano has appreciated the dedication of Caldwell’s nursing professors in making safety a priority and using the virus as a “teaching moment” in many of his classes.
Living through a pandemic has helped many of Caldwell’s future nursing and public health professionals appreciate the opportunities they are receiving to prepare them to make a difference in their chosen professions. “We are determined to finish our degree and help out as soon as possible,” said Rutano.
Public health student interns and students in the course “Community and Public Health Nursing” will serve at sites for their clinical placement experiences in the spring semester.