The UW-Stevens Point campus looks a bit empty, but that will all change next Tuesday when students return to class. According to health officials, they may bring the flu virus with them.
"Influenza is peaking this week, we think, in the state. So, there's every expectation that we may see some illness in the next few weeks as students return," said Jen Sorenson, UWSP Student Health Service Administrative Director.
Health officials said college campuses are prime places for contagious illnesses to spread.
"We have a high number of students that live in our residence halls, and they're living in very close quarters. So, obviously, the spread of illness is definitely a concern," said Sorenson.
"I didn't get my vaccination this year just simply because I'm not in the dorms, and I feel like if you live in the dorms, there's a higher risk of you getting the flu," said Alyssa Berube, a UWSP sophomore.
And there are other areas students need to worry about.
"Sharing, you know, classroom spaces, desks, workspaces. Obviously, computer kiosks also are a concern," said Sorenson.
Student Health Service leaders said they're focusing on prevention and education.
"We're sending out the message to students that if they have not been vaccinated, that is the key prevention strategy at this point," said Sorenson.
And the message is already reaching some students.
"The dean just sent out another email recommending that all students get their vaccination before second semester starts. I think that's a very good idea," said Berube.
Student Health Service officials said flu vaccinations are free for students, and they have an ample supply.