Students take advantage of vaccine expansion in Kansas


Courtesy of Andrew Phalen

Junior Andrew Phalen received his vaccination against COVID-19 on April 2 after Kansas opened vaccines up to anyone 16 and older.

By Sarah Farhat, News Editor

Starting this week, COVID-19 vaccines are now available for those 16 years or older. 

Gov. Laura Kelly last week announced that  all Kansans 16 years or older are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. Kelly strongly encouraged everyone eligible to take the vaccine so “we can get back to school, back to work and back to normal.”

The Lawrence-Douglas County Public Health vaccine interest form is now available for those eligible to fill out so they can be vaccinated against COVID-19. The survey is not an appointment, but it will determine and guide those who are qualified to get the vaccine. 

Students who are 16 and older are already awaiting the bright future ahead now that the COVID-19 vaccine is available to them.

Sophomore Hayden Houts was excited to hear that he could get the vaccine. 

“I was really happy to find out that I could get the vaccine and feel a lot safer in my day to day life,” Houts said. “I plan to get vaccinated so I can lessen the risk of infecting anyone with the coronavirus if I ever catch it.”

Senior Chloe Phan’s entire family is anticipating getting the vaccine because it could lead to the end of the pandemic.

“My sister signed up for the vaccine for the whole family but we did not get the text to come get the vaccine yet,” Phan said. “I think I am excited for the vaccine because the covid situation is going to end soon. Some of my friends already got the vaccine and I think it is good.” 

Sophomore Milo Bitters rejoiced when he learned he had the opportunity to receive the vaccine. 

“I️ plan on getting vaccinated because I️ have great plans that I️ have made with friends that are only possible to complete if we are vaccinated,” Bitters said. “I was over the moon to learn I have the opportunity to get the vaccine. Because I️ have the opportunity to be vaccinated, I️ can finally start acting like the brash teenager I️ am supposed to be.”

Sophomore Cecelia Jakubauskas hopes that an increase in vaccinations could lead to a return to pre-pandemic life.

 “I had no idea I was eligible for the vaccine this early, but now that I know, I’ll make sure to get signed up,” Jakubauskas said.  “I look forward to being vaccinated because now that more and more people are, maybe life will become closer to how it was before the pandemic”

Complete the vaccine interest form at this link: 

Tessa Collar contributed to this report.