Ohio announced its grand prize winners for its Vax-2-School lottery, as well as the fifth and final round of winners of smaller scholarships, on Friday.
The grand prize, a $100,000 scholarship in return for getting vaccinated, went to five:
Jacob Peers, Convover
Avery Lagory, Cleves
Audrey Bird, Brecksville
Widnelson Miller, Delphos
Rinoa Chech, Canton
The fifth round of 30 people who have earned $10,000 scholarships in return for getting the COVID-19 shot are:
Daniel Adams, Holland
Mariel Augsburger, Wapakoneta
Eliesna Bangura, Columbus
Clayton Bernath, North Olmsted
Ryan Brunner, Cincinnati
Chloe Chadwick, Hudson
Renata Chavez Garcia, Mason
Charlotte Dickinson, Vermilion
Carson Dues, Dublin
Evelyn Dukes, Austintown
Alana Dustin, Westerville
Brionna Edwards, Columbus
Sky Evans, Cleveland
Gabriel Foreman, Bellefontaine
Cole Franke, Euclid
Katelynn Frazier, Brook Park
Evan Groh, North Royalton
Benjamin Gurd, Chagrin Falls
Caden Krupinski, Beavercreek
Isabella Messenger, Wooster
Chloe Murphy, Chardon
Amelia Nehlsen, Brecksville
Nidhi Patel, Hilliard
Andrew Putt, Massillon
Jonathan Rosa, Parma
Margaret Selegue, Glenford
Connor Self, Chagrin Falls
Carly Stewart, Solon
Charles Sutton, Wapakoneta
Andre Tabler, Mansfield
Vax-2-School is an initiative by the Ohio Department of Health to increase COVID-19 vaccination rates among young people, especially with the shot recently getting approval to be used on those as young as 5 years old.
“This age group has the most room to grow in getting vaccinated and, with the delta variant in our midst, is the group we’re most concerned will miss in-classroom opportunities if they get or are exposed to COVID-19," Gov. Mike DeWine previously said.
Congratulations to today's #OhioVax2School $10,000 scholarship winners! Scroll through the graphics to see all 30 winners! Daniel Adams, Holland; Mariel Augsburger, Wapakoneta; Eliesna Bangura, Columbus; Clayton Bernath, North Olmsted; Ryan Brunner, Cincinnati 🧵1/7 pic.twitter.com/B8PB9IrPOe
— Ohio Vax-2-School (@OhioVax2School) December 3, 2021
As of Friday, only a quarter of Ohioans ages 19 and younger have received their first dose, per state data. The next-lowest rate is for those ages 20 to 29 at 52%.
Since the governor announced the Vax-2-School prizes on Sept. 23, the vaccination rate for first doses increased from 33% to 40% for Ohioans ages 29 and younger, according to a USA Today Network Ohio Bureau review.
The program awarded a total of $2 million in prizes: 150 $10,000 scholarships and five $100,000 grand prize scholarships. Prize scholarships are awarded in Ohio 529 College Advantage plans and can be used at any Ohio college, technical or trade school or career program.
Health officials have said it is extremely important for young people to get vaccinated despite older adults being more at risk from serious illness. Some of the newer variants have had more of an effect on young Ohioans.
During the fall peak when the Delta variant surged, for instance, Ohio children's hospitals penned a letter to the public, saying that they were seeing COVID-19 cases "more than ever before."
“What’s a little bit different now is that something of a silver lining a year ago… kids were getting infected but weren’t getting particularly sick,” Dr. Hector Wong, an ICU physician at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, had said then. “That’s changed now.”
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The Akron Beacon Journal contributed.
This article originally appeared on Akron Beacon Journal: Who won the grand prizes for Ohio's vaccine lottery scholarships?