May 12, 2022

501: Did This College Student Really Get Expelled For Refusing The COVID Booster Shot!? (w/ Ellie Puentes)

"My body, my choice" doesn't seemingly apply to those refusing the COVID booster.

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"My body, my choice" doesn't seemingly apply to those refusing the COVID booster.


At least, that's how it appears, as today's guest (Ellie Puentes) was EXPELLED FROM COLLEGE for the the audacity of refusing to take the COVID booster... all this after having an adverse reaction to the second dose of her COVID vaccine!


Listen as Ellie outlines her experience being expelled by Union College and how far the COVID insanity gone.


" I'm fully vaccinated. I received my second dose back in September, but I got so sick from it to the point where I ended up hospitalized and continued to have something to this day.


And before getting the vaccine,I had no health issues.So when I got an email from my school, reminding me to get the booster vaccine, I sent out an email with my concerns, and my request for an exemption was denied.


They denied my hospital documents.


They denied a letter written by my doctor, you know, who's known me longer than administration of Union, where he stated it's ill-advised for me to receive the booster right now, and they denied that."


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Brian Nichols  0:21  
The focusing on winning arguments we're teaching the basic fundamentals of sales and marketing and how we can use them to win in the world of politics teaching you how to meet people where they're at on the issues they care about. Welcome to The Brian Nichols Show. Did this college students really get expelled for refusing? Not just the COVID vaccine? No, no, the COVID booster shot? Yeah, we're going to talk about that. Hey, folks, Brian. He was here on The Brian Nichols Show. I am as always your humble host. And today we do have a fun filled episode in store for you, I promise but it's maybe not as fun filled as traditional because we're talking about yes. In fact, a college student who did get expelled for refusing to take the booster le puentes. She's joining me here on The Brian Nichols Show, Ellie, welcome to the program.

Ellie Puentes  1:08  
Hi, Brian, thank you so much for having me. Absolutely. Thank

Brian Nichols  1:11  
you. for joining us. I wish it was on better circumstances truly. Because this sucks because you're here because your college that you went to in you enjoy Union College, they they said Ellie I'm sorry. We can't have you here anymore. We have to kick you out. Actually expel you because not because you are a vaccine denier or because you're just refusing the vaccine outright. No, no, it was because you were refused to take a booster after you had some serious reactions to your second vaccine. So Ellie, that just blows me away. I'm sure the audience hearing that they're thinking no way but your way. Talk to us le Introduce yourself The Brian Nichols Show audience and how did you find yourself getting expelled from Union College or using a COVID vaccine booster?

Ellie Puentes  1:56  
Yeah, hello, everyone. I wish that wasn't the case. I wasn't expelled. But yeah, so I'm fully vaccinated. I received my second dose back in September, but I got so sick from it to the point where I ended up hospitalized and continued to have something to this day. And before getting the vaccine, I had no health issues. So when I got an email from my school, reminding me to get the booster vaccine, I sent out an email with my concerns and my request for an exemption was denied. They denied my hospital documents. They denied a letter written by my doctor, you know who's known me longer than administration of Union, where he stated it's ill advised for me to receive the booster right now and they denied that I even went to the lengths of calling Plaza themselves, then confirming that other patients have had the same reaction but it was still denied there was nothing I was gonna say that was going to change your mind. Their decision was final. I was expelled. So for prioritizing my health, they expelled me they unroll me from classes. They gave me 72 hours to leave, pack up my whole college life I had to accumulate in the past two years, and I'm no longer permitted back.

Brian Nichols  3:06  
Wow, that's crazy. Now let's address what the college said they said now they're like we're gonna dance around federal privacy laws but while the college cannot discuss the situation surrounding Quintus or any of its students, in general terms, we can state emphatically that no students have been expelled for refusing to get a booster shot. All students, faculty and staff are required to be vaccinated and boosted with exceptions only being made for individuals who have been granted a medical or religious accommodation. An individual who chooses not to comply with our policy is not allowed on campus until they meet the requirement Ellie I'm sorry like you going to the ER still having issues to this day and yes, getting your doctor to sign off on this. I think that would at least qualify to meet the standards for a medical or I mean, not really religious accommodation, but medical, at the very least. What's the rationale? What's the logic here?

Ellie Puentes  4:08  
I really wish I knew I have no idea. I mean there was really, I had all the facts there and it was just denied. So now they're just trying to lie to their friends in the media saying that, you know, they haven't expelled me. They're trying to label this as a voluntary withdrawal. But nothing about this was voluntary. If I had a choice, you know, I'd be on campus. Receiving my education and not at home. Luckily, nothing.

Brian Nichols  4:32  
Yeah. Is this political? Do you think?

Ellie Puentes  4:36  
I really don't know. My thing is, I mean, there's 50 Other students fighting this mandate, and I'm the only one on a roll that just seems a little questionable to me. And you know, I was on a scholarship at the school. I come from a family that can support you financially. I pay for college on my own. You know, I love Union College for that they provide me with a very generous scholarship that allowed me to attend that solution. So I'm very grateful for that. But when there's like I said other 50 other students fighting this mandate, and the only person who's unenrolled is the person on the scholarship, it seems a little questionable.

Brian Nichols  5:13  
So talk to us about your experience prior to this right. And I think in I'll give you the context, why because it's tough for a lot of the folks who have been out of college for we will say, I will even go back I would say like maybe 10 plus years, I'll say five plus years because college has changed so much so quickly. What was it like on campus or in that virtual world, when you were not allowed to to be around others to not socialize and how has college change in this post COVID world?

Ellie Puentes  5:50  
So, I mean, I was only in college for I mean, this was my second year, so I didn't really get too much of a normal college experience. Upperclassmen would tell me like, you know, I feel bad for you guys. You guys don't know the real union. So it was online classes. It was you know, we couldn't even see people at different dorms at one point because we were put on a lockdown. So it's just you know, you have to make the most of what you have. Because if not, you're just alone. You don't, you're not able to go out and you just got to make the most of it.

Brian Nichols  6:26  
And did you see Did you see a lot of students before all this happen? refuse the vaccine.

Ellie Puentes  6:35  
I honestly am not too sure. But the RS campus did mandate the vaccine. So I didn't see any students on enroll you know, like I was so there was probably everyone that complied but when they're now pushing the Bucha and for myself, it was medical. And there was just like I said nothing that was going to change your minds. And I have heard of other students who you know, we're finding the same thing but caved into getting the booster because out of fear of you know, not graduating or out of fear of not seeing what happened to me and you're getting kicked out

Brian Nichols  7:14  
in how sad and scary that is because you're you're seeing your your peers literally put their their health at risk. In order to pursue this education. And I mean, I'm not sure if you've had this talk, but you know, as an old fuddy duddy here who graduated college around 10 years ago or so, like Yeah, I do I use my degree. Not really do you use it? The public education you get? Not really I mean some of the basic stuff Yeah, but in the most part, a lot of what you use on a daily basis is the stuff you learned and you end up 1000s and 1000s and 1000s of dollars in debt. And and now at this point you're you're mentioning you know, there's kids who were fighting it but they ended up just caving and I'm I'm sad because I can't imagine you know what that might mean for them in the future, especially if they have real reservations much like you did and then how you stood your ground with your medical concerns. And I mean, talk to us like you've seen a lot of these other students. Have you seen any other issues take place with students experience any side effects or any vocals? Okay, cases happened that you can think of in your local area in the union or any other areas in the or any other colleges in the surrounding area?

Ellie Puentes  8:33  
Yeah, I know from other students who have been reached out to me that similar things I've had been they've been getting kicked out of school and you know, this is just outrageous to me, you know, because this isn't just about me. It's happening all over the world. So at this point in time, you know, for me, it's everyone's fight. It's time for everyone to get together and you know, stand up for their freedom because it's just so easily taken. I mean, people are literally getting their lives destroyed. People are getting fired. Other students are being kicked out. So it's just very upsetting.

Brian Nichols  9:06  
And you mentioned that you're of your first generation American, correct?

Ellie Puentes  9:11  
Yeah, so I am a first generation Mexican student, actually.

Brian Nichols  9:15  
There you go. Okay, gotcha. So to talk to us about what your family has experienced in you having to fight this fight. You know, because I'm sure there must be some type of, you know, like, Hey, you're here, take this opportunity, but you're standing up for your health and you're you're being safe and cautious. What's that conversation been like?

Ellie Puentes  9:37  
So my parents have actually been very supportive of me because they've seen my health decline since getting the vaccine. So I mean, it even went to the point where, so in the administration, nobody was speaking to me. Nobody wants to speak to me in person. This was all happening over email, which, you know, was very upsetting to me because I wanted to have a substantial conversation with somebody about what's going on and it was always excuses. It was always different times and I was always sent back to a nurse at the health center who didn't even want to see me when I was sick. I went in one day, and she told me you aren't you're here because you're truly sick or because you don't want to receive a booster. So it you know, that's very upsetting. So then my parents started to get involved and they talked to my school dean and you know, she was or my mom was hit with, you know, are you a doctor like you don't know, but you don't need to be a medical professional to see someone's health decline, since you know, receiving that and then she used to been tried to talk to that school nurse Angela stepanos. And she was even hung up on so it was just disrespectful. And it felt personal at that point, because nobody wants to speak to me.

Brian Nichols  10:53  
Wow, that's that's just not only is it it's shocking, but it's sad. Um, and you're experiencing two sides of this right? You're experiencing not just the societal implications of everything, but you're also experiencing the physical implications of the reaction from the second dose. Talk to us if you would now don't feel compelled to share what you're not comfortable sharing. But what's that been like? Because you mentioned that you're still experiencing symptoms to this day. What's that been on the impact on you?

Ellie Puentes  11:28  
I mean, it's really been devastating when you used to be completely healthy before and now you wake up randomly puking some days or getting sick every other week. Like it's just, it's not ideal because you're trying to live a normal daily life. And these things that you should not happen now are coming at you. And it's, it's a little scary, too, because you don't know how this is gonna further impact you. I mean, this is what's happening to me now, but what's going to happen in a couple years from now,

Brian Nichols  11:59  
right No, that's that's a very good point. So talk to us, right? Like, let's get away from this sad and very upsetting topic, and let's talk about like what your plans were because you were at Union College. You said you were only there for a couple of years. So you're still kind of getting things ready to roll and now let's concentrate has been a big pause placing in your life. So what were you going to Union College for? And where do you see yourself going now that you had this completely unexpected turn of events in life?

Ellie Puentes  12:30  
So I was at Union I was on a pre med track while also studying biology and Spanish which I find kind of ironic studying medicine and things like that. So that was my goal. And now, you know, kind of speaking up against this I don't know of any medical school is going to take me but my goal in life has always been to help others you know, which is why I've chosen to you share my story because of other people. Have you seen something similar? But, you know, I found kind of like a more of a purpose, finding injustices like this and maybe that can turn into something of maybe law or political science. To where I can continue to help people, but much sooner than it would be then going to med school.

Brian Nichols  13:18  
Well, I'll tell it here. We'll do some personal advice here. I guess because I got I got a poli sci degree I know, and I use it very minimally. Now grades, I enjoyed the experience, and it was a great experience. I learned a lot. And I think actually, it's not true. I do use quite a bit that I learned in political science, namely for I'm doing political analysis here in the program, but did I need it? Probably not. You can learn a lot of the stuff that you're looking to learn online on you could go to YouTube, you could go to Odyssey name, name the site and you can listen to so many different podcasts and you can really find a lot of the things you're looking for without having to go 10s 1000s hundreds of 1000s of dollars in debt and you know that that would really help you when you're trying to actually go out and help people because then you're not being held back by the confines of just that burdensome student debt. So, I mean, I'm sure there's gonna be people out there who are gonna say, you know, hey, Ellie, we want to help you and not only do we want to help you, we want you to be able to help us help other people. So you talk to us what you're seeing in terms of going out and helping people. What do you envision that being? And I mean, obviously, if there's 10s of 1000s of folks who listen to this program here who might be interested in helping you accomplish those goals, so who should be reaching out to who should be or trying to get in touch with you to to help that become reality?

Ellie Puentes  14:48  
Well, right now, my main goal is just getting to college because as a first generation student, like that has always been my goal, but eventually, I'm hoping someone you know, who is just fighting for freedom, fighting for the choices of people and being able to, you know, exert your rights as a human being as an American. So anyone who believes has that belief and freedom, it can reach out to me anytime and I can see what I can do in order to help help me help them.

Brian Nichols  15:21  
There you go. And what we try to really promote here on the program in general, is not just talking about the problems that are out there in the world, but actually building the solutions that people are looking for because I think at the end of the day, people are so tired of the political conversation. They're tired of the political back and forth. And to your point, they want to see the problems they see in the world actually get solved. They want people who need help to be helped. And what's happened is too often the conversation has been dictated by those who are the loudest voices, versus those who are the most empathetic or the most understanding or the most, you know, the most compelled and ready to actually bring real tangible solutions to the table and I think it requires us to almost, you know, hit the big proverbial brake on the way things had been going the traditional discourse and present a completely different way of not only approaching these problems, but also the solutions that we bring to the table overtly, outside of the public policy perspective. So with that being said, Now, I know once you ended up having all this nonsense happened over at Union College there wasn't GoFundMe that was started but GoFundMe, those sneaky little buggers. They went out of their way and they actually asked your fundraiser, how dare they so Ellie, we ended up having you to go to a give send GO Campaign. Instead, talk to us about where folks can go ahead and do that.

Ellie Puentes  16:47  
Yeah, so as you said, GoFundMe shut me down. And I just think that's a massive effort by like the COVID regime to just try and silence a student who's trying to raise money to go to school. But my friends you know, I have amazing friends who actually set up a Gibson go page for me switch the platform over where you can donate some money because last I heard from Union was so money that I owed him you know, for something that I don't even get credit for. I was there for three weeks and just got zero credit on my transcript. So I might as well been there for zero weeks and saved that money.

Brian Nichols  17:20  
Wow. What they still charged you after the expelled you for things like that.

Ellie Puentes  17:27  
Yep. And yeah, that's the last I heard from the Union Administration. Nothing else.

Brian Nichols  17:32  
And you know, it's breaks my heart and it's the fact that you enjoy college like you enjoyed the experience that you were having. And I mean, this isn't a conversation I guess, so much on it. Do you go to college or not, but rather you are enjoying college and you got kicked out for the fact that you refuse to take a booster after having a severe medical reaction to the original shot? I just any person hearing that explain as plainly and as simply as you have here on the program today just hears that and knows that's insane. What why? And they rightfully ask that question, because any sane logical person would have that reaction. So I think what we're seeing now, give us a timeline again, la geez, come on, make sure I'm saying this right. When was it that you actually did get expelled?

Ellie Puentes  18:22  
Probably about a month ago, I came home around April 15. I

Brian Nichols  18:27  
would say my birthday. How about that? So that that's insane. So here we are. A month ago. We're in 2022. Folks, right like this this COVID history has been going on for two years now. Right? And you're seeing kids getting kicked out of school for refusing a booster now we keep on saying like, Oh, that means it's all over cube COVID all over. It's not all over because the insane policies that not just governments have put in place but a lot of colleges administration's name the organizations out there that have been put in place in the name of keeping people safe like that, that has been so overplayed over the past two years now I really don't know like public health has a lot of groundwork to catch up because they've really damaged a lot of credibility over the past few years. But I was saying that because it's I think it's at a point now where your average person is ready to move forward, and they're ready for the insanity to stop. So folks if this if this frankly, pissed you off. I hope it did. Please do me a favor and go ahead and share Ellie's story because at the end of the day, these stories need to be told because we think you know that because I didn't see people who aren't wearing masks like Oh, things are getting better. They are kind of getting better, but there are still people who are getting hurt. So that being said, Ellie, we'll make sure we include the Gibson go in the show. Notes. And if folks want to continue the conversation with UDM social media and get in touch with them.

Ellie Puentes  19:53  
Yes, you can follow me on Instagram at La dot pointers on Twitter at Le pontos

Brian Nichols  19:58  
There you go. All right, well, we'll make sure we include that in the show notes. And by the way, folks, if you enjoyed today's episode, you are gonna love yesterday's episode. Because it was a yours truly doing a top five review for episode 500 of my five, five of my favorite episodes. In fact, you're over on The Brian Nichols Show, so make sure if you miss that I'll make sure I include that video here at the end of today's episode. If you're over on YouTube, give that a click it'll bring you right to yesterday's episode. But with that being said, Folks, thank you for joining us on today's episode. With that being said, it's Brian Nichols signing off. You're on The Brian Nichols Show for le point as we'll see you tomorrow. Thanks for listening to The Brian Nichols Show. Find more episodes at the Brian Nichols

Transcribed by

Ellie PuentesProfile Photo

Ellie Puentes

Former Union College Student

A pre-med Biology and Spanish language student of Union College in Schenectady, New York who was expelled and given 3 days to pack up for refusing to get a COVID-19 booster shot, after experiencing serious adverse reactions from the second dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.