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Auburn, Alabama offer vaccination rewards to college students

Auburn University and the University of Alabama are offering incentives for vaccination of...
Auburn University and the University of Alabama are offering incentives for vaccination of their college students.(Source: WSFA 12 News)
Published: Jul. 27, 2021 at 4:14 PM EDT
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AUBURN, Ala. (WSFA) - The two largest public universities in Alabama are offering incentives to thousands of college students in an effort to get them to vaccinate against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The University of Alabama and Auburn University, which boast a combined total of more than 65,000 students, are offering prizes to those who go and get the shots.

At Auburn University, students have the opportunity to earn $1,000 scholarships, upgraded premium parking spots on campus, priority class registration, and free meals, among other things. Those students who are fully vaccinated and registered for fall semester 2021 classes are eligible.

And it’s not just students who are eligible. To sweeten the pot, Auburn is letting student organizations in on the incentives, as well. Up for grabs are free venue reservations and custom apparel when members submit their organizations’ names on their entry forms.

At the University of Alabama, students who are enrolled for the fall semester and report their vaccination by Aug. 28 will receive $20 in Bama Cash.

Universities aren’t the only places offering incentives to boost the state out of last place in the nation for its low vaccination rates.

The Alabama Department of Corrections is offering $5 incentive for inmates to get shots, a Montgomery vaccine clinic is offering free tickets to the upcoming Alabama National Fair, and in the north Alabama city of Gadsden, there’s a $100 cash offer to residents who get fully vaccinated by Oct. 15.

While State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris said Tuesday that while he supports local efforts to incentivize vaccinations, there are no plans for such efforts at the state level and that other states like Ohio, which gave away millions of dollars in a lottery, ultimately saw minimal success.

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