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A student receives a flu shot at the Health and Wellness Center.
Photo by Austin Simpson/Staff Photographer

Brittany Guimond
Campus Reporter

Though not an identifiable season on a calendar, flu season occurs during the cold half of the year and creates commotion whenever it comes.

As flu season approaches, many pharmacies begin advertising vaccination opportunities and other methods to minimize the spread of flu. The key to prevention is to start early and be prepared for the season according to Angela Blackwell, pharmacist at the CVS location on campus.

“Flu season starts around the end of September,” Blackwell said. “The best time to start getting immunizations is somewhere around two to three weeks before this time period. Here, we like to say better proactive than reactive.”

The annual vaccine for flu is developed in the U.S. by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention after receiving information on the yearly flu strand from China, which sees its effects first. Then, a specific vaccine is formulated which is tailored to those symptoms, making annual vaccination crucial, according to Blackwell.

In fact, in some cases it is better to either get the vaccine early or not get it at all.

“If your body is already fighting the vaccine, and you get actual flu on top of that, you are going to be in even worse shape than without the vaccine,” Blackwell said.

However, while early prevention is crucial, it is not the only step to be taken, nor is it the end of the world if someone does not receive a vaccine. Hygiene is just as important when it comes to keeping one’s body healthy, not only for flu season, but as an everyday aspect of life, according to Blackwell.

Things such as washing one’s hands frequently or using hand sanitizer, as well as keeping one’s immediate environment clean are crucial to limiting the amount of bacteria one encounters, therefore lowering the risk of flu or other viruses. According to Blackwell, this becomes especially important for students who are on campus frequently.

“Your risk of getting flu is highest when you are often in tight spaces with other people,” Blackwell said. “This is why many students get flu, due to living in small dorms together and being in busy classrooms for hours at a time.”

Some students can attest to this firsthand.

“I was hospitalized due to flu at the beginning of this semester,” said Dalton Campbell, a freshman in chemistry. “The doctor’s orders to prevent it from happening again were to wash my hands regularly, sterilize common surfaces like computers or counters, take more vitamin C and cover my mouth when sneezing or coughing.”

According to Dr. Mickie Powell, Ph.D. in biology, it is important to “wash your hands and cover your cough” and while it may seem a simple method, limiting the spread of bacteria and receiving vaccinations is what flu prevention is all about.

Brittany Guimond can be reached at

Aura and Real Life Poets host 2nd annual Spoken Truth Poetry Festival

Join us for a full day of artistry and workshops at the Spoken Truth Poetry Festival on April 14, 2018 from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. at UAB’s Hill Student Center. Admission is free for all attendees. Aura Literary Arts Review (UAB) and Real Life Poets, Inc. have partnered to bring an array of activities to this year’s poetry festival, including a variety of workshops, a poetry slam, and a special poetry showcase highlighting spoken word performers in the region. Workshops begin at 1 p.m. with topics varying from the art of performing poetry, how to become a published author, and how to create your own handmade magazine.

Poetry slam participants must be between the ages of 15 and 21. The poetry slam begins at 5 p.m., followed by the poetry showcase at 6:30 p.m. We believe that art is a vital form of expression that develops independence, enhances creative and critical thinking, and encourages higher order thinking such as analysis, synthesis and evaluation. Art crosses cultural boundaries and breaks down social, religious and racial barriers. UAB’s Aura Literary Arts Review and Real Life Poets, Inc. aim to encouraging artistic expression, especially amongst the youth and young adults in our community who will someday help activate and bring about change in our world. So be prepared to enjoy a monumental day of truth and expression!

*To register to attend the workshops or participate in the poetry slam, visit For media inquiries only, contact 205.585.8271 or email

Spoken Truth Poetry Festival April 14 workshops begin at 1pm and continue until 5pm where the poetry slam and showcase will begin

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USGA to reign in new president: Candidates introduce platforms of their campaign to student body

pres pose 3 1 of 5Siddharth Srikakolapu

pres pose 2 1 of 2Erica Webb

pres pose 1 1 of 4Kevin Pittman

Photos by Laykn Shepard / Photo Editor

Lauren Moore/Campus Editor

As a young and growing institution, UAB looks to student leaders to help shape the future of the university. USGA hosted their 2018 Presidential Debate Thursday, March 1.

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Black Panther Movie Review  

Jo Wright
Life & Style Reporter

The release of Black Panther over President’s Day weekend spurred plenty of excitement, evidenced by its immense success in the box office. The original estimate of $165 million was eclipsed by the $242 million made domestically. The film, directed by Ryan Coogler, features a nearly all-black cast and qualitative female-empowering roles.   

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How to survive to school shooting: Capt. Amy Schreiner shares with students how to live through an on-campus shooting

Sufia Alam
Campus Editor

According to the Center for Disease Control, roughly half of those who commit or attempt to carry out a homicide at a school usually present some type of warning sign, such as telling others about their plan or leaving a note before the event.   

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