$7,000 Award, Free Tuition - US Universities Offering Incentives to Get Students Vaccinated

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Many higher education institutions across the United States are trying to convince their students to get vaccinated against COVID-19 by offering various incentive programs, including free tuition, gift certificates, pizza parties, and more.

As part of the university’s campaign “Protect Our Herd” all students of the University of Alabama (UA) who are at least partially vaccinated against COVID-19 before 5 p.m., August 28, will be given $20 in “Bama Cash,” campus currency.

At West Virginia University, students and employees proving they are vaccinated against COVID-19 joined a competition to win laptops or $250 gift certificates for Chick-fil-A, Erudera.com reports.

Moreover, Texas A&M University has most recently published new rules and incentives for students and employees, including COVID-19 compulsory testing and fully-paid fees to students showing proof of vaccination against COVID-19.

In addition to West Virginia University and Texas A&M, vaccinated students at Ohio University may also win prizes, including a dinner with the men’s basketball coach, a fall photoshoot for one hour or even to have a drink named after them at a coffee shop within the campus.

In July, the University of Wisconsin (UW) System announced an incentive program under which students who are vaccinated for COVID-19 can win a scholarship worth $7,000.

“Under the “70 for 70” campaign, vaccinated students who attend universities that achieve at least 70 percent vaccination rates will be eligible for one of 70 scholarships valued at $7,000 each. Students at all UW System universities except UW-Madison are eligible for the drawing,” the university’s press release reads.

UW’s President Tommy Thompson said that while students are expected to return to campuses next semester, the university wants to make sure that they will have a safe study experience.

“That means students should get vaccinated, and we will incentivize it knowing that high vaccination rates are critical to our success. The ‘70 for 70’ campaign is key to helping our universities achieve higher vaccination rates, especially in the face of the looming threat the Delta variant poses,” Thompson added.

Central Michigan University also announced a vaccine incentive program in a bid to convince more students to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 with prizes such as full-year scholarships or hundreds of gift cards.

Over 600 US colleges and universities are requiring their students and staff to be vaccinated for a safe return campus life this fall, including Washington State University or Boston University.

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