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Colleges Fight The Flu As Students Return To Class

By Lauren Leamanczyk, WBZ-TV
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Lauren Leamanczyk is an I-Team Correspondent for WBZ-TV News and is...
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WESTON (CBS) – One of Jordan Monts’ first stops of the semester was the Regis College Health Center.

He is finally getting his flu shot.

“What really made me worry is I saw one of my friends who just got back onto campus and she was sick so I went, ‘OK,’ I’m really trying to prevent myself from getting sick,” he said as a nurse practitioner injected him with the vaccine.

Students returned to class Monday at Regis after winter break. They were greeted with warning signs and flu kits which contain disposable thermometers, hand sanitizer and tissues.

“For college campuses it’s definitely a concern because students are living in these tight quarters together,” said Community Health Director Dianna Jones. She compared the level of vigilance to the 2009 H1N1 outbreak.

As students flood back onto Boston area campuses the focus on flu is everywhere, several colleges and universities are holding special flu clinics and offering free immunizations.

Boston University is sponsoring five flu clinics in five days to start the semester.

“Already we’ll have 130 walk-ins and probably have a couple hundred before the end of the day,” said spokesman Colin Riley.

Several students leaving the clinic said their parents encouraged them to get the flu vaccine. Tom Ford said the University made it easy.

“It was literally just a walk down here. I got up a little early, but it was worth it,” he said.

Flu clinics are just part of the solution, colleges are also posting flyers and using online video to remind students about hand washing and hygiene.

RELATED: What You Need To Know About The Flu

Regis College sent a letter telling students to just stay home a few extra days if they are sick.

“We asked them to stay off campus until they are fever free for 24 hours or symptom free for 24 hours,” Jones said.

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