Villanova Students Share Vaccination Experiences

Kara Dempsey, Staff Writer

As COVID-19 vaccines continue to become more readily available, some Villanova students have started to become eligible to receive the vaccination. Several students have shared their experiences of receiving the vaccination to give others an idea of what to expect.

Sophomore Olivia Pasquale was able to receive the vaccine because of her position as a medical assistant at a dermatology office, but the importance of being vaccinated extends beyond that for Pasquale. 

“I specifically got it so I can eventually see my grandparents again once they are vaccinated,” Pasquale said. 

Pasquale has received both doses of the Moderna vaccine. After the first dose, she only experienced some arm pain. It was the second dose that came with more side effects. However, this did not interfere with daily function for Pasquale. 

“After the second dose, I had less arm pain, but I went home and took a three hour nap after,” she said. “In addition to tiredness, I had chills and a headache for about 24 hours and body aches for about 36 hours.”

The anticipation of eventually returning to normal makes the side effects of the vaccine worth it. 

“I had a great experience getting the vaccine, so I definitely encourage anyone who is eligible to kickstart their vaccination process as soon as they can,” Pasquale added. 

Sophomore Faith Kisker also received both doses of the Moderna vaccine, becoming eligible as a member of VEMS. With her first dose, Kisker had no side effects besides soreness in her arm. 

“After the second one, I was in a lot of pain and very nauseous and had a fever,” Kisker said. “I was pretty much out for a day after receiving it.”

Kisker was able to recover from these side effects after the first 24 hours.

The role Kisker has in VEMS made it important for her to receive the vaccine.

“It meant doing my part in protecting those in my close community and my patients,” she said.

Kisker is outwardly public about having been vaccinated. 

“As a biochem major, I understand the science behind the vaccine and trust those that made it,” she said. “When you don’t understand something and you don’t know anyone that’s had it, it makes it much easier to condemn it and be afraid of it. By receiving it and being public about doing so, I believe I was contributing to publicizing that it is safe and that people should trust it.”

Even students who have not yet been vaccinated have been feeling the effects of more people receiving vaccinations. Junior Billy Vinci, who has yet to receive a vaccine, has been impacted by the vaccination of some of his professors. One had to stop class halfway through because she was too fatigued from having just received a vaccination. Another one of Vinci’s professors cancelled class completely because of experiences with vaccine side effects.

However, observing the side effects in others does not deter Vinci in his plans to become vaccinated when he is able to. 

“The science says the more people who are vaccinated, the quicker things will get back to normal,” Vinci said.

One difficulty faced by sophomore Charlotte Bohra in taking steps to receive a vaccination was simply getting an appointment, even though she was eligible to receive it due to pre-existing conditions.

 “There have been a lot of difficulties getting appointments, and I didn’t want to take it from more deserving people,” Bohra said. 

Bohra eventually booked an appointment after seeing an email that the state of New Jersey had extra slots available. After her first dose, she was automatically scheduled for the second one a month after. 

Bohra has not yet received her second dose of the vaccine but is still advocating for others to make efforts to become vaccinated when the option becomes available. 

“I think that it is so important for people to get the vaccine if possible so we can go back to normal and protect other people,” Bohra said.