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Pharmacy alumni return to D'Youville to help college test out of remote learning requirements

Posted at 5:19 PM, Nov 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-24 20:26:38-05

BUFFALO, N.Y (WKBW) — D’Youville College was able to order 1,000 rapid covid tests from New York State’s Health Department and test its entire on-campus population in under a week.

This was all done to meet the new state requirements for colleges and universities.

More than 350 people were tested with only one positive result.

The college credits preparation and planning with a little help from its alumni.

We actually used pharmacists, who are essential workers and frontline personnel, working day and night to supply medication and information on COVID.. and now testing,” said Michael MacEvoy, the Director of Experiential Education at D’Youvile’s Pharmay School.

Those pharmacists that were used were the college’s own — their alumni came back to volunteer with their testing “machine”.

“We went through 357 people in a short amount of time,” said Jason MacLeod, the Associate Vice President of Operations and Covid Compliance Officer. “It ended up being about one person per minute that was moving through this testing machine that we had set up.”

It’s a system that worked so successfully, other schools began to reach out to D’Youville for help testing out of the state’s remote learning.

REACH Academy Charter School said their tests came just as quickly from the State, and they plan to do drive-through testing early next week to get some 300 students back to in-person learning.

They’ll use students from D’Youville’s programs to help, which is being called a win-win for everybody.

“Our students are getting real life experience in a pandemic scenario that may not happen in their lifetime again,” said MacLeod. “They’re doing that service in the K-12 setting which is being hit harder with the testing than higher education is and the requirements that go along with that.”

D’Youville’s president Laurie Clemo tells 7 Eyewitness News the school is already preparing systems for vaccine distribution. It will start with its student population then reach out to help other schools distribute to theirs, as well.