Not Throwing Away Her Shot: Emma Tice and Her Vaccination Sight Experience


Emma Tice, her grandmother, and uncle pose for a picture during Emma’s shift. Photo provided by Emma Tice

Abigail Tice, Editor

Rosary alum Emma Tice ’13 has been working at the Downtown Disney vaccination center as a staff check in supervisor/accountability manager. Back in October, Emma applied through the County of Orange to be a poll worker. Little did she know that this would set her up for another opportunity to help the county later down the road.

Emma Tice and grandmother pose for a picture immediately after her grandmother received her vaccination. Photo provided by Emma Tice

In early January, Emma received an email from the Orange County Registrar of Voters asking if she would be interested in working a vaccination site somewhere in the county. They offered her a spot saying that since she had already worked through the county and had a background check, it would be an easy process to work for them again.

After she agreed, she showed up on her first day in the Disneyland parking lot searching for where to go. She came across two professional-looking women with clipboards and did what any other person would do, ask for directions. The women immediately took a liking to Emma and decided to train her themselves.

The women trained her for a week and then decided to let her go on her own. After Emma’s training, she started working 40 hour weeks, her day beginning at 5:45 am and ending at 4:00 pm. Throughout the course of her day, Emma oversees over 100 employees and sets up assignment sheets for them to know where to work on each particular day and assign tasks to those who didn’t have any.

She was also able to help and interact with patients. Emma made friends with a man whose wheelchair she pushed through the vaccination line. They got talking and he told her that this process reminded him of his very first vaccination for polio at the age of 5.

Emma has made friends with many people through working this vaccination sight and can’t wait to make more. She discussed her favorite memory with me saying, “It was heartwarming hearing older patients talk about how thrilled they are to be able to leave their houses with less worry. I’m glad to be a part of something that brings comfort to so many people.”

I asked Emma what she thinks one of the major perks of working the center is and she said, “Despite having to wake up at the crack of dawn almost every day, working the vaccination sight has been really good for me. I’ve been busy trying to balance online classes and work but it’s really helped me find a routine that works for me.” She later added, “Working the site also allowed me to get my first vaccination before a lot of people. Contrary to what many people think, the shot didn’t hurt at all and the only symptom I experienced was a sore arm.”

While working this vaccination sight that helps over 4,500 patients a day, Emma has come across a handful of skeptical patients and most of them realized that the vaccination was nothing to be scared about.

In order to help Orange County, California, America, and the rest of the world get as close to “normal” as possible, get vaccinated when it’s available to you. Until then, keep doing what you’re doing– wear a mask and stay socially distanced!