Doing Our Part

The university aids the fight against COVID-19 as a vaccination site

A man and nurse laugh together after the man receives his vaccine
Scenes (shown above and below right and left) from an emotion-filled day in early March as Case Western Reserve began administering COVID-19 vaccines.

On the first Thursday in March, 540 Clevelanders came to Case Western Reserve to protect themselves, their loved ones and their community. They left with a COVID-19 vaccine dose in their arms.

It marked the first day of the university's vaccination site, which began in collaboration with the City                      of Cleveland.

"We're very, very proud to be partners with Case Western Reserve," said Cleveland Councilman Kevin Conwell of Ward 9, which includes part of the university campus.

"As an anchor institution, one of our sole responsibilities and obligations is to partner with the neighborhoods around our campus," said the university’s Interim President Scott S. Cowen. "We have the space here; we have the human talent that’s needed to pull this off."

Nurse administering a vaccine to a patient

Since then, university faculty, staff and students working with Cleveland’s Department of Public Health and the Ohio Department of Health have vaccinated 12,525 people (as of May 2), including members of the university community and other eligible individuals across Ohio.

12,525 Vaccines administered at CWRU from March 4 to May 2.

The atmosphere that first day of vaccinations at the Veale Convocation, Recreation and Athletic Center was focused, upbeat and packed with promise as people administered and received vaccines, filled with emotions and a sense of civic duty.

Angelo Johnson, who works in CWRU’s custodial services, lives with family and was more than ready. "I just feel that it’s very important that we all get the vaccine so we can all be safe," he said.

Image of people waiting to receive their vaccines in a gymnasium

Megan Koeth, director of resiliency in the university’s Division of Public Safety, has spent more than a year managing initiatives to keep the campus operating in safe and healthy ways.

She was moved at the sight of people from childcare centers, churches and other pillars of the community being vaccinated.

"It’s brought me to tears multiple times hearing people say they can’t wait to hug their children again and their mothers," Koeth said. "It’s been a really great day."