Tom Williams here with Utah State University President Noelle Cockett. President Cockett, thanks for joining us again.
NC: Yeah, it's my pleasure. Always good to chat with UPR.
TW: Well, let's start with word on the pandemic front. Understand, you've arranged a vaccine clinic for the Logan campus on Friday?
NC: That's right. Bear River Health Department has worked with Ellis Bruch, our director of emergency management, as well as others on campus to be able to deliver 1000 Johnson and Johnson doses on Friday morning, located in the Eccles Conference Center. So, really excited about this opportunity to assist in getting people vaccinated.
TW: So this is for, I guess, any USU employee or student? And my understanding is that the information, the link to sign up, has gone out through text.
NC: We actually sent out the original notice on Friday. And again, 1000 doses, and within three hours, all appointments were filled. So really exciting that people are enthusiastically and quickly getting in there and getting that done. We also think that, if this goes smoothly, which we certainly anticipate that it will, that Bear River will continue to hold these clinics on the campus. And so we've reserved people and the space for subsequent Fridays, in case that's possible.
TW: Now vaccines are getting the headlines, the testing is still ongoing. So under what circumstances would you want folks to get tested?
NC: Well, same as they've been doing. You know, any person that has flu like symptoms, you know, encourage them to eliminate COVID as the responsible cause. And we do still see some infections, daily infections here in Cache Valley. So people that have come in contact with those positive individuals, again, encourage them to go over and get the PCR test at east stadium. And then we also have had people who need a negative test prior to travel and our PCR works for that. Except we know at this point, Hawaii is not accepting the USU PCR test results. As I understand it, a person traveling to Hawaii should actually go to test Utah 72 hours before rather than going through the USU PCR test.
TW: Your office to send out an email about the “Start by Believing” campaign. Wonder if you could tell us a little bit about that?
NC: Well, we've actually had that in place now for two, possibly even three years. And it's a pledge that people can take to believe others when they report sexual assault or sexual violence or sexual harassment. That's actually, historically, been a problem when people are dealing with sexual assault, that maybe there's just that skepticism. And so we believe very strongly in supporting victims of sexual assault and making it a promise that if they bring something forward, we will treat it seriously. We will treat it with respect and help them with whatever it is that they need. We won't question their report.
So it's a national program and we felt it very, very appropriate to bring it onto our campus. I signed the pledge the first year it was available. It's just, again, assurance to victims of sexual assault that we want to help. And we do that first by believing.
TW: So I think probably the easiest way to get to Start by Believing is startbybelieving.usu.edu. We've been talking with Utah State University President Noelle Cockett. President Cockett, thanks so much, as always.
NC: You bet. Glad to be able to report on the good things that are going on with Utah State.