ORANGEBURG, S.C. — Claflin University students can get $500 added to their student accounts if they prove that they received the COVID-19 vaccine.
Emoni Lucky got her vaccine and her $500.
"I was able to upload my vaccination card to receive my $500 incentive," said Lucky. "That money brought down my bill tremendously. You can use that for books or however it is needed to aid you. For me, it was a big help. $500 is a lot of money. Having that money to bring down my room and board, which I had to pay for, allowed me to stay on campus. That is very important to me because I wanted to be able to come back so I could get my college experience before I graduate."
The money incentive ties directly with the institution's mission of having 80 percent of the entire campus vaccinated.
The university is hosting a vaccination clinic every Wednesday in September to reach that goal. The institution's public information officer, George Johnson, says the school is doing everything in its power to make sure students are on campus and safe.
"We want to provide that Claflin experience to the students, and we want them to come back," said Johnson. "If that means we need to provide incentives to help them make that decision, then we're happy to do that."
The incentives don't stop there for the panther community.
The South Carolina Department of Education was on campus Wednesday offering $25 Domino's gift cards and raffling a chance to win headphones or a 50-inch tv.
Student Government Association president, Lauren Tolbert, says her team is campaigning for their peers to get vaccinated.
"I encourage all of my peers to get vaccinated, as well as everyone on campus, not just students," said Tolbert. "Also, everyone in the Orangeburg community gets vaccinated, tested, and stay masked up so we can keep our community as safe as possible."