'I'm a part of something': Student nurses provide support to Cumberland County's vaccination operation

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WTVD) -- As we enter the second month of vaccinations in Cumberland County, front line workers continue to see crucial support from local student nurses.

The Crown Complex has become the central hub for vaccine distribution for the Cumberland County Department of Public Health. There, county health nurses, the National Guard, and aspiring nurses are helping to distribute the vaccine, including Staff Sergeant Brent Crutchfield.

"There's six students from Campbell here, today, and we've been rotating through the entire class of about 50 students," Crutchfield said.

Crutchfield attends Campbell University and is working to become an Army nurse. Wednesday was his first time helping administer the vaccine. "To be able to give a vaccine for something that has changed the entire world is really, pretty cool."

For April Dailey, a student at Fayetteville Technical Community College (FTCC), she's also been able to practice what she's been learning to become a registered nurse.

"I think it's a nice thing that, being a second-year nursing student, I can take those skills and clinical time that I did get in the first year and apply it to my second year," Dailey said.

According to the county officials, FTCC, Methodist University, Fayetteville State University and Campbell University have each lent their students to assist with vaccine administrations, providing support to health care workers at the Crown Complex and local hospitals.

"Just to be able to have that interaction that I haven't been able to have because of COVID, so it's a really wonderful experience," Dailey said.

Dailey and Crutchfield are each one of six student nurses from their respective schools that helped on Wednesday. They say being a part of this major operation, as they both pursue their careers in the medical field, is unique to say the least.

"There's been a couple of times today when you just realize, 'hey, I'm a part of something that's...we're going to be talking about for the rest of our lives,'" Crutchfield said.

Both student-nurses tell ABC11 that they will continue to help at the Crown Complex in the coming weeks.
Copyright © 2021 WTVD-TV. All Rights Reserved.