NEW YORK - New York State is offering 50 college scholarships to students who get vaccinated against the coronavirus, announced Gov. Andrew Cuomo Wednesday.
New Yorkers 12-17 years old who get their first Pfizer shot between May 27 and July 7 will be eligible for full tuition, room and board at any public college or university in the state.
A random drawing will be held every Wednesday of those people who get the vaccine. Ten scholarships will be awarded weekly.
"This is a full four-year scholarship, to a SUNY school, to a CUNY school, to a community college and then moving on to a four-year program. It's a significant incentive for students. By the way, it's an incentive for parents. For parents, you worried about paying for college? Tell your 12-17-year-olds to go out and get a shot," said Cuomo.
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The earlier the person gets the first shot, the greater their chances of winning a scholarship.
The tickets, which are typically sold for $20 at retailers, are free. The 'Vax & Scratch' program runs through May 28 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
New York administered 788,145 doses in the seven days through Tuesday. That's down from just over 1 million in the seven days ending Tuesday, May 11.
About 45% of New York's 20 million residents are fully vaccinated, according to U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data, compared to the national average of 39.5%.
Few minors have been fully vaccinated so far: about 8.7% of people aged 12 to 17, according to state health data shared by Cuomo. That's compared with 37.5% of young adults below the age of 25, about half of people aged 35-54 and 69.5% of those over 75.
With the Associated Press