Underclassmen react to vaccine approval

Pfizer vaccine opens up to 12 year-olds, older


Jacob Perszyk

Sophomore watching teacher on May 11. Freshmen and sophomore are exited to get their vaccines after age limit was lowered.

Gabriel Kaplan

After hearing he was eligible for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, freshman Tommy Walsh said he was ecstatic.

“It only got approved a couple days ago and my appointment was one of the first I was able to find,” Walsh said. “I’m very, very happy with how quickly I was able to get it done. I’ll get my second dose right before school ends, so I’ll be looking pretty great for the summer.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended the administration of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for 12–15-year-olds May 12, according to The New York Times. This decision greatly expands the eligible population for inoculation and will enable many Park students to access the vaccine.

Fellow freshman Henry Salita said he had been anticipating the approval for weeks and got an appointment as soon as he could.

“I was tracking the news all day to see when the vaccine was finally approved. Then I just hopped on the CVS website and got the quickest appointment I could,” Salita said.

According to freshman Noam Halpern, there are plenty of appointments available nearby and within St. Louis Park.

“It was actually surprisingly easy (to get my appointment). I signed up Wednesday and am getting it within 24 hours,” Halpern said.

Walsh said he got the vaccine to protect himself and his family, in hopes to help the community return to pre-pandemic life.

“Doing this now means I can start doing other things sooner, but also achieving herd immunity for everyone else so we can all get back to doing the things we used to do,” Walsh said. “Bringing things back to normal is what everyone wants and this is probably the best thing to do that.”

Halpern said he thinks everyone should get inoculated, considering the low risk and responsibility to the community.

“I think a lot of people who are vaccine hesitant are definitely the people who are not as careful in general about COVID(-19), so explaining that if you want to go back to normal — if you are burdened by this — then getting the vaccine is the best thing to do. Getting more people aware would be the first thing,” Halpern said.

Walsh said he thinks he will feel much safer after the second vaccine, although he will keep wearing a mask until the pandemic improves.

“After the second dose, I’m not sure it’ll be something that really clicks in my mind, but subconsciously I’ll know I’m protected,” Walsh said. “I might as well keep wearing a mask because I should and because I can’t think of any reason not to. It helps everyone. Once it gets to the point where it’s not an issue anymore, then I’ll be fine not wearing it everywhere.”

To schedule your COVID-19 vaccine appointment, see this article by Echo