USM Vaccine Incentive: Encouraging Students to get Vaccinated?

Students walking on campus.

By: Scarlett Gully, Sy Barnes, and Rachel Hernandez

September 15, 2021

The Student Health Services at the University of Southern Mississippi announced their plan for a new incentive program to begin prior to the start of the Fall 2021 semester. Fully vaccinated USM students are eligible for incentives over the next nine weeks. 

Beginning July 30 through October 15, students enrolled for the fall semester who are fully vaccinated can participate in winning the one out of five prize drawings that are held weekly.  

Vice President of Student Affairs, Deedee Anderson says that she first brought the idea to the President of the University, Rodney Bennett. After requesting the incentives from the president, she believes that she received a response that exceeded her expectations.  

Vice President of Student Affairs, Deedee Anderson.

“For the most part, students have been genuinely excited about this process. Today we have passed the 5,000 marks for submissions to this incentive.”  

In order to grab the attention of students, it is important to incorporate prizes that could benefit the whole student body. The five incentives include full tuition coverage (value of $4,602), Dining Dollars ($1,000), Barnes and Noble Bookstore Book Voucher ($300), Housing and Residence Life Room Credit ($2,000), and Parking Decal ($414).   

“Tuition, books, residence halls, and parking are all things that we considered in the prizes of this incentive, says Anderson.  

The prizes are high in value; moreover, tuition, textbooks, housing, and campus dining can be expensive for students, which makes this new incentive a very tempting offer.  

Koby Moore, Senior at USM says, “As much as these prices and incentives are good, we want the student to get the vaccination on their own accord instead of strictly being incentivized.” 

Visit to submit vaccination records.    

Contact the Moffitt Health Center for more information.  

Moffitt Health Center

Group PKG: