The common cold and flu can spread very easily on a college campus. Think about all the surfaces that you touch during the day and how many other people have touched those surfaces too. Every year up to 20% of people living in the United States become ill with the flu, and more than 200,000 people end up in the hospital due to complications.

Getting sick can be easily avoided if you follow these simple suggestions:
• Wash your hands
• Avoid contact with sick people flu
• Get plenty of rest
• Don’t touch your face
• Get your FREE flu shot at Student Health Services

Many students do not receive their flu shot because they do not fully understand the seasonal flu. Here’s what you need to know:

How does the seasonal flu spread?
You can catch the flu when someone with the virus coughs, talks, or sneezes, and their bodily fluid land in your nose or mouth. However, it is also possible to touch a surface with the virus on it, then touch your face and get the flu.

What is the best way to protect myself?
The flu vaccine provides the best protection against seasonal flu.
How long does the illness last?
Usually the seasonal flu lasts about one to two weeks. Most people are contagious one day before any signs or symptoms appear, and they can continue to infect others up to five to seven days after their symptoms develop.

Get your FREE flu shot! Visit to find out about flu shot clinics around campus or visit Student Health Services in Commonwealth Hall.

Written by Rachel Kile, Peer Educator