Students Take Advantage of Loosened Vaccine Eligibility

The Contra Costa Health Services (CCHS) updated the COVID-19 vaccination eligibility to all Contra Costa residents aged 16 or older on April 1, opening up the vaccine to many Campolindo students.

While many students had already received their vaccinations through qualifications of being an essential worker, the update loosened the requirements to simply living or working in Contra Costa and meeting the age restriction.

Senior Katie Strohmeyer was able to receive her vaccine through her job coaching at Las Trampas Swim Club in Lafayette. “Because I was coaching kids aged 4-15, I was considered a childcare type person because I was interacting with them,” said Strohmeyer.

Now, any student above the age of 16 can be vaccinated through CCHS, or by signing up on

Senior Haley Hartman signed up for her vaccine by creating a CCHS MyChart account. Going into her appointment she felt, “a little concerned about side effects, but was more relieved that there is a vaccine at all.”

“If anyone is worried about it hurting, it wasn’t scary at all. I’m not a big fan of needles but it didn’t hurt, it just felt like the guy poked me,” said Hartman.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website lists possible side effects of the Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines to be tenderness at the site of injection, headache, nausea, fatigue, and fever. It is also warned that side effects of the 2nd dosage if receiving a Moderna or Pfizer vaccine may be more intense.

Strohmeyer received her 2nd dose on April 4, and said she “just felt really tired and muscles felt pretty bad, but I never had a fever or anything like that and I took 2 tylenol before track and field practice just in case.”

“I think some people are afraid of side effects, but every side effect goes away within a day, and if you want to be able to come to school and go to football games full of spectators, then you’re gonna have to get the vaccine because that’s what is driving down the rate of transmission,” said Strohmeyer.

According to a poll posted by @thecampoclaw on Instagram, 93% of respondents plan on getting vaccinated. Among the 7% who voted no were students not yet old enough to be eligible.

Junior Ava Ghazvini said that although she is “somewhat hesitant about getting [vaccinated] because of how it could affect [the] body long term,” she is “all for getting vaccinated” and believes that “things are going to gradually start going back to normal” with the vaccine being administered in a widespread manner.

“I think it’s essential that students do this [get vaccinated]. It’s just important for the safety of yourself and others in the school community, the more we vaccinate the sooner we can get back to normal,” said Hartman.

“I think especially for seniors, by getting the vaccine you have a way greater chance of having a normal college experience and actually being able to do things over the summer, so the more you wait and not do it the more things will be taken away from you,” added Strohmeyer.

Hartman said that once she is fully vaccinated she looks forward to “just going to the store without fear. I think also traveling a bit, and maybe volunteering to help with Covid relief efforts.”