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Cooper announces drawings for million-dollar prizes and college tuition to encourage COVID-19 vaccinations

As part of North Carolina’s effort to encourage more North Carolinians to receive COVID-19 vaccines, Governor Roy Cooper announced “$4 Million Summer Cash and College Tuition” drawings to motivate those who have not yet been vaccinated as well as thank those who have.

Four vaccinated North Carolinians 18 and older will win $1 million each and four North Carolinians ages 12 to 17 will win tuition for post-secondary education. Executive Order 219, which has concurrence from the North Carolina Council of State, authorizes the drawings, stated a press release from the governor’s office.

North Carolinians 18 and over who have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine will be automatically entered into four drawings for a chance to win a $1 million cash prize. Youth between the ages of 12 and 17 who have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine will be automatically entered into four drawings to win $125,000 towards post-secondary education. The $125,000 can be used at any post-secondary institution and will be awarded in the form of a NC 529 account.

“This is your shot at a million. Regardless of who wins, there’s no way to lose,” said Cooper. “A chance at a million dollars is pretty good motivation. But even if your name isn’t drawn, the worst you’ll do is get strong protection from a deadly virus.”

The drawings will run from June 23 through August 4. All North Carolina residents 12 and older who have been vaccinated with at least one dose are eligible, some restrictions may apply. Those vaccinated on or after the announcement, made June 10, will be entered twice for each drawing, increasing the chance of winning for the newly vaccinated. Drawings will take place every other week on Wednesdays with the first drawing set for June 23. New entries will close at midnight on the Sunday prior to the Wednesday drawing. Winners will be verified and then announced.

“Everyone who gets a COVID-19 vaccination is a winner,” said Dr. Mandy K. Cohen, secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. “They protect themselves, their loved ones and others from severe illness, hospitalization and death. Millions of people have already taken the vaccines. These summer cash drawings add another reward to the many that come with getting a COVID-19 vaccination.”

“The drawings are part of the state’s Bringing Summer Back get-out-the-vaccine campaign to increase awareness of the availability and safety of COVID-19 vaccines and encourage North Carolinians to get a COVID-19 vaccination as soon as they can,” stated the release. “The vaccines have been thoroughly tested and found to be safe and effective for anyone 12 and older.”

North Carolina joins other states that have announced million-dollar drawings to promote vaccinations. Ohio, the first state to launch such a program, reported a 28 percent increase in vaccinations among those 16 and older in the first two weeks following the announcement.

North Carolina’s drawings will be funded with federal Coronavirus Relief Funds. The drawings will be supported by the North Carolina state lottery director. The scholarship funds will be managed by the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority.

Learn more about the drawings at SummerVaxCash.com. For more information about COVID-19 vaccines and the state’s Bringing Summer Back initiative, visit YourSpotYourShot.nc.gov or call 1- 888-675-4567. Official rules may be found here and frequently asked questions may be found here.

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