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Meet TSU’s COVID fighters

Written by on December 9, 2021

As the students of Texas Southern University continue to hurry around a newly reopened campus, a small group of women stay nestled away in Room 110 of the Spurgeon E. Grey Hall, fighting a silent battle. 

Since September of this year, a collective of women have gone into overtime, working throughout the day to monitor students, faculty and staff for COVID, all in an effort to keep their campus safe. 

While the task may seem daunting, the COVID Prevention Center’s Director Zuri Dale insists that it is less of a job and more of service. 

“This department is really mission-aligned,” Dale said. “Every single thing that we do here, from every phone call to every email that we send and every email that we send to each other, and every interaction that we have with each other is related to covid response and keeping the campus safe,” 

Dale also feels like the department’s service is needed because her group is always ready for the job and can handle the intensity of keeping a campus as TSU safe. 

We recognized early on that it was crucial that we had a single entity for COVID response. The responsibility of responding to any infections disease or pandemic situation requires specialized skills and knowledge. 

Much like her colleague, TSU Covid Prevention Center Administrative Director Ava Holland uses her platform not only as a way to keep Covid at bay but as a way to give back through service. 

“If I can be of help or assistance to someone with whatever they may be going through and make it easier for them, I’ll do whatever I can to help,” Holland said. “That’s what I’m about.” 

The service shown by her department and TSU has impressed had working professionals like contact tracer Thelma Romaldo is proud of the work that they have done. 

“I’m very impressed with all the guidelines, precautions and procedures that they have to keep their faculty, students, and staff safe,” Romaldo said. “ I haven’t seen a school like this take such measures and guidelines to keep everyone safe,” 

While contact tracer Vicky Davis has also been happy with the work of the department, she also wants students to understand how much has to be done in fighting the war against COVID. 

“We just have to be mindful that COVID is still out there,” Davis said. We just have to continue to work in sync and work together and with the school.” 

While more and more regulations come in allowing for less masks and more vaccines and the holiday break inches closer,  Zuri Dale still hopes that students don’t take anything for granted. 

“Receive your vaccinations, the Delta variant is very much still present,” Dale said. “Vaccination remains the number one way in order to protect yourself against serious disease.” 

All overall, everyone at the TSU Covid Prevention Center wants to try and make sure that everyone practices safe precautions to keep themselves and others healthy and away from COVID or any other COVID variants.