Florida A&M University (FAMU) President Larry Robinson, Ph.D., rolled up his sleeves and received the second dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at the Al Lawson Gym and Multipurpose Center Friday morning.
Robinson, 66, was at the front of the line among faculty and staff to receive the first vaccine several weeks ago. The staff of the Student Health Services temporarily set up at Lawson to vaccinate eligible employees and students. Beginning next week, Lawson will be the location of a community vaccination site.
Robinson has made a commitment to lead by example as the University seeks to build trust for vaccines among African Americans. Before he was administered the vaccine, Robinson spoke live on MSNBC about the need to educate and vaccinate a skeptical community.
“We believe having a trusted partner like Florida A&M University is key,” Robinson said about the battle against vaccine hesitancy. “Having vaccines available on this campus would help the community get beyond that.”
The Lawson Center vaccination site, 1800 Wahnish Way, is targeted toward underserved communities and is expected to open Thursday, February 25. The site will operate from 9 a.m. to noon, seven days a week and distribute up to 200 vaccine doses daily for the first four weeks. Later, the site is expected to expand to 400 doses per day.
The vaccination site for those 65 and over will occupy the main level of the Lawson Center. Those visiting the free vaccination site are asked to bring an ID to verify their birthday. A registration link and contact phone number for the site is expected to be available soon. Onsite registration also will be allowed, said Tanya Tatum, director of FAMU Student Health Services.
The Florida Department of Emergency Management (DEM) will operate and staff the site in collaboration with the Florida Department of Health-Leon County.