Vaccine News & Notes — May 2022

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Parents PACK

Essay contest for adolescents and teens!

We are excited to announce that the 2022 Maurice R. Hilleman Essay Contest is now accepting entries! The contest is for students in grades 6 to 12 in the U.S. and Canada (grades 6 to 11 in Quebec). Students are asked to write a 500- to 600-word essay that addresses the prompt:

Maurice Hilleman was a determined scientist. Describe what this means and provide an example of determination in science.

For complete rules and information, visit

This year, we will name six student winners — three from the U.S. and three from Canada. We are extremely grateful for the support of our co-sponsors, which allowed us to expand the contest into Canada this year:

Winners will each receive US$1,000 and the opportunity to participate in our virtual celebratory event this fall. Teachers named in the winning entries will receive a signed copy of Pandora’s Lab: Seven Stories of Science Gone Wrong and a complimentary one-year membership to the National Association of Biology Teachers (NABT). We would like to thank our colleagues at NABT for graciously providing the memberships.

Please help us spread the word so that as many students as possible have the opportunity to compete!

Andre’s Armor, a new book for preschool- and elementary-aged children

In Andre’s Armor, author and pharmacist, Dr. Mohamed Jalloh, aims to help young readers understand how vaccines are like characters in their video games. The story follows Andre as he visits the doctor and is not too happy to get his shots — until he learns that the vaccines are like the knights in his game.

The book, available in English and Spanish, has racially diverse characters, so that children can relate to individuals that look and feel like them. Dr. Jalloh also felt this was important because he wants all children to learn about career opportunities in healthcare and STEM-related fields.

Materials in this section are updated as new information and vaccines become available. The Vaccine Education Center staff regularly reviews materials for accuracy.

You should not consider the information in this site to be specific, professional medical advice for your personal health or for your family's personal health. You should not use it to replace any relationship with a physician or other qualified healthcare professional. For medical concerns, including decisions about vaccinations, medications and other treatments, you should always consult your physician or, in serious cases, seek immediate assistance from emergency personnel.