NORFOLK, Neb. – Ellie Norlen is looking forward to doing more things with her family. For Henry Beel, it’s attending concerts and watching football in-person. The two were among students at Northeast Community College who received the first dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine during a clinic on Thursday on the College’s Norfolk campus.
The clinic, provided by the Elkhorn Logan Valley Public Health Department, was open to the public who were 18 years of age and older.
Norlen, a freshman from Hastings, said she registered to receive the vaccine in order to protect her family.
“I have been able to see them, but this is just in case.”
When asked about what the past year has been like for her, Norlen paused and said, “ … this my first year, so this is all I know about college,” she said. “So, it’s been a shock, but I do feel like I’m missing out on some things. But that’s just how it is and we just have to adapt and make the best of it.”
Beel feels good about getting the vaccine. He said it was convenient to have the clinic on the Northeast campus.
“At first, I was kind of concerned about getting the vaccine, but now that people have started getting vaccinated, I’d figure at some point or another I’d have to get it,” he said. “If I want to go out to concerts or go to a Husker football game, I have a feeling they’re going to require it.”
Beel, a member of the Northeast Livestock Judging Team, said it has been a challenging year, but he said he is beginning to see some bright spots moving forward.
“This year has definitely been different. I’ve missed out on a year-and-a-quarter of a true college experience. I’ve still be able to go on my livestock judging trips, but we have missed out a lot including attending an event in Louisville, Ken., because COVID was so bad back in November,” Beel said. “But I’m happy that we’re going to be able to have in-person graduation, so that’s the start of some return to normalcy.”
Immediately following the clinic, Beel was planning to travel with his fellow Livestock Judging teammates to a competition in Hutchinson, Kan.
Carissa Kollath, director student activities at Northeast, and Erika Rupprecht, student activities coordinator, were also on hand to make the clinic a little festive for the students. They provided opportunities for students to have their photo taken with a frame that read, “I got my COVID-19 Vaccine," and distributed stickers featuring Northeast’s mascot, Jazzy, in a mask, #NortheastStrong, and "I got my vaccine. They also handed out t-shirts and 32 oz. tumbler mugs to students who were vaccinated.
Norlen is looking forward to getting back to some sense of a routine as summer approaches in the coming months.
“I’m looking forward to going out and just being protected by the vaccine. And maybe, hopefully, not wearing masks as much, but still protecting others.”
Those who received the first dose of the vaccine on Thursday will get their second inoculation at a clinic on May 13, at the Cox Activities Center on the Norfolk Campus.
Northeast Community College student Ellie Norlen, Hastings, poses with Jazzy, the College mascot, after she received the first dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic on Thursday on the Norfolk campus. The clinic, provided by the Elkhorn Logan Valley Public Health Department, was open to the public, 18 years of age and older.