Florida State University, which is increasingly stepping up its call for students to be vaccinated, is now offering incentives to move the needle.
Students who get fully immunized can line up for $ 3,500 in assistance with tuition and fees, as well as gift cards and an iPad. A student will receive a deluxe suite, valued at $ 1,750, at a future ceremony at the Tucker Civic Center.
These incentives are offered across the country by universities.
Florida A&M University announced last month that it was using $ 1 million in federal COVID funding to provide cash incentives, laptops, iPads, and other freebies that students can receive if they are fully immunized. .
FSU and FAMU administrators are increasingly concerned about the number of patients hospitalized locally for COVID-19, most of them unvaccinated.
Since Governor Ron DeSantis and the board of governors of the state university system argue that universities cannot mandate vaccinations, schools have taken it upon themselves to encourage participation and promote masks against the more dangerous Delta variant.
A major epidemic on campus could lead universities to revert to virtual education, limiting activities on campus and reducing the number of spectators at sporting events, among others.
Complete vaccination rate FSU unknown
Dr Daniel Van Durme, Senior Associate Dean for Clinical and Community Affairs at FSU College of Medicine and Chief Medical Officer of FSU’s COVID Response Team, said there was growing concern about the spread of the Delta variant, in which one person can infect eight others.
“Over 90% of the cases we see are from the Delta variant,” Van Durme said of the positive COVID tests at FSU. “Across the region, if you look at private labs like LabCorp, Quest, it’s about 80% a few weeks ago.”
Van Durme said the Delta variant is of particular concern for campuses, where students congregate in large groups, attend full classrooms, socialize in bars and attend sporting events.
“This doesn’t mean that every person will infect eight, it’s an average,” Van Durme said. “If you put 100 people with Delta and they pour into the city of Tallahassee, then we can expect them to infect 800 soon.”
And while a department head at FSU told his faculty that an unidentified survey of students showed 11% of students had been fully immunized, Van Durme said it was impossible to verify.
“Frankly, it’s frustrating for all of us. We are not authorized to obtain this information. The reality is we don’t know, ”he said. “The governor has made it clear that we are not authorized to require people to disclose their immunization status. We just don’t know where we are. “
Thrasher sends clear message on COVID vaccines
FSU’s offer comes a day after President John Thrasher stepped up his previous language of “strongly encouraging” students to get vaccinated before returning to campus.
Now, he says, it is the university’s “expectation” that everyone is vaccinated against COVID-19, and students, professors, visitors and vendors wear masks at all times in the rooms. AUS facilities, whether or not they are vaccinated.
He also expects students to stay home when sick and get tested for COVID-19 within 24 hours of onset of symptoms.
According to Tuesday’s announcement from the Student Affairs Division, until October 1:
- Six fully vaccinated students will each receive a package valued at $ 3,500 in tuition and expense assistance.
- Four students will each receive $ 150 in Dollars to use at any Seminole restaurant.
- Four students will each receive a $ 150 FSU Bookstore Gift Card.
- Two students will each receive an Apple iPad Air 10.9 4th generation, valued at $ 549.
- A student will be able to use a deluxe suite at a future FSU launch ceremony of their choice at the Tucker Civic Center valued at $ 1,750.
A draw is scheduled for October 15. Any current or incoming student who receives both doses of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine series (Pfizer or Moderna) or a single-dose COVID-19 vaccine (Johnson & Johnson) is eligible.
But students must have completed the entire round of vaccination before the October 15 drawing.
Contact senior writer Byron Dobson at [email protected] or on Twitter @byrondobson.
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What is “fully vaccinated”?
The CDC considers fully vaccinated individuals:
- Two weeks after their second dose in a two-dose series, such as Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or
- Two weeks after a single dose vaccine, such as the Johnson & Johnson Janssen vaccine.
For more information on vaccine incentives at FSU, visit www.vaccine.fsu.edu.