CMU announces first round of winners through student vaccine incentive program

Student Government Association President Kate King and the Marching Chips present Johnathon Taft with his scholarship via video call. Screenshot of YouTube video

Greenville senior Johnathon Taft was selected as the first of four students to receive a scholarship equal in value to a full year of tuition as part of Central Michigan University's vaccine incentive program.

Taft was surprised with the news of his scholarship with a video call from Student Government Association President Kate King, members of the Marching Chips and President Bob Davies.

During the call, Taft, an athletic training major shared his reasons for getting a vaccine.

"I chose to get vaccinated because I work with patients a lot, and I want to protect them and myself," Taft said during the call. "This is also to protect my family when I go home and see them."

An additional 400 students — 100 per drawing — will receive $75 gift cards. All participants in the program also receive a 20% discount to the CMU Bookstore just for registering online.

As of Aug. 11, 5,550 students, approximately one-third of the student body, entered the incentive program.

Vice President for Student Recruitment and Retention Jennifer DeHaemers told University Communications she is proud of the participation so far and hopes the numbers continues to climb.

"We are excited for the return of students to campus this fall and want to ensure everyone can enjoy a robust and engaging fall semester as safely as possible," DeHaemers said. "We strongly encourage students to receive the vaccine, and this program is a fantastic reward for doing so."

CMU will host vaccine pop-up clinics on campus during move-in and orientation week. Students and employees also can make an appointment through CMU Health by calling 989-774-6599. Students outside the Mount Pleasant area may visit Vaccine Finder or Michigan's COVID-19 vaccine page to find a vaccination site near their home.

The remaining drawings for the incentive program are scheduled for Aug. 23, Sept. 13, and Oct. 4. All students currently enrolled at CMU are eligible to register, including main campus, Global Campus, international and College of Medicine students.