Students in the BOCES CTE New Visions Law, Government and Public Administration program are staffing a vaccine call center for Madison County to assist local residents.
The students, all high school seniors, are part of a one-year intensive program housed at the Madison County Office Building. Instructor Cindy Ciaralli said county officials felt the students would be able to support local vaccination efforts.
“We started last week, and the students have really gotten up to speed pretty quickly,” Ciaralli said. “We haven’t been able to do everything we normally do this year, but this is something unique that they have been able to experience.”
The student-run call center is open Monday through Wednesday mornings during class time. Students log into the county’s website and vaccine management system, don headsets and field calls from Madison County residents with questions. The county has provided students with information and sends them emails about new appointments and clinics opening up, so they are prepared for high-volume call periods.
“We’ve been able to answer questions about vaccines, testing, if someone should quarantine, if they had an exposure, if they traveled, lots of things,” VVS senior Arayla Garcia said. “It’s not what I expected to be doing, but it’s pretty cool, and I like to help out.”
When calls are not coming in, students continue with their curriculum, which exposes students to a variety of careers in the public service sector, engages them in service-related internships and projects and prepares them for college-level study in any field.