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Published July 16, 2021
A senior elementary art education major from Rock Springs is the winner of the University of Wyoming’s first drawing for students who have reported being vaccinated for COVID-19.
Sophia Spicer wins $300 cash after her name was drawn from among students who have reported their COVID vaccinations on the Student Health Service patient portal. The $300 cash prizes as well as other prizes will go out weekly until the sixth week of the fall semester Sept. 27.
Two winners of the grand prize, covering up to $4,500 in tuition and fees, will be drawn for the fall semester -- one the week of Aug. 23, the other the week of Sept. 27.
“I got vaccinated first and foremost to protect my friends and family who have not yet had it, and to do my part to prevent the spread,” Spicer says. “I also did it so I could wrap up my college years in a normal way. I missed a lot this past year due to COVID requirements, including being able to celebrate my 21st birthday. I wanted to get vaccinated so I’d be able to celebrate my 22nd without restrictions and so I could regain a ‘normal’ college student’s life -- including in-person learning, football games and more. I did it most importantly, however, to protect those at high risk and so those who were unable to receive the vaccine had one less person to worry about getting COVID from.”
Spicer, who will do her student teaching in the spring semester, says she found it easy to report her vaccination on the Student Health Service portal.
“I did it in about five minutes after receiving my vaccine. I encourage everyone who hasn’t to take those five minutes to report your vaccine,” she says. “I recommend it first and foremost because it keeps the numbers accurate; secondly, because it’s so easy -- and look at the rewards that you could get for taking those extra five minutes.”
Another student won Apple AirPods in the first of the weekly drawings.
While vaccinations are not required for UW students and employees -- instead, they’re strongly encouraged -- students should report their vaccinations once they’ve received them. This allows the university to track overall vaccination numbers. The information is not being used for any other purpose, except to enter those who’ve reported their vaccinations into the drawings for prizes. The university’s privacy protocols are being followed.
To upload documentation to the Student Health Service patient portal, take a photo of your vaccination document and upload the picture here: http://patientportal.uwyo.edu, using your regular UW user ID and password. This is the same portal where students report their mandatory vaccination for measles, mumps and rubella.
Additionally, students can report their vaccinations by emailing photos of their vaccination documents to Student Health at email@example.com.
Only those students who submit their COVID-19 vaccination information to Student Health are eligible for the prize drawings. Students who submit proof of their first shots will be eligible for the weekly drawings; to win the tuition and fee prizes, students must have submitted proof of complete vaccination (for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, two doses).
Names will be drawn weekly from the total pool of students who’ve reported at least one shot.
In addition to the grand-prize drawings the week of Aug. 23 and Sept. 27 for the semester of tuition and fees, one winner will be selected each of those weeks for an “A” parking permit, which usually is only available to faculty and staff members -- and is valued at $210 annually. The $4,500 award for tuition and fees would be reduced by any scholarship amount a student is awarded and is meant to cover only costs the student or family is obligated to pay out of pocket.
The weekly drawing is for a winner who will receive $300 in cash, along with one more winner for another prize. Those prizes include pregame field access passes for UW football games; Dining Dollar cards from UW Dining Services, each valued at $100; and Apple AirPods.
Additionally, five students will each win the prize of a dinner for six with President Ed Seidel and his partner, Gabrielle Allen, at the Marian H. Rochelle Gateway Center. Also included will be catered dinners with Provost and Executive Vice President Kevin Carman, along with Associated Students of UW President Hunter Swilling, from Cheyenne.
Students in the United States can go to https://vaccinefinder.org/search/ and learn where COVID-19 vaccines are available. They can even narrow the search to look for a particular type (Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson) in up to a 50-mile radius of the zip code they enter.
Students who are unable to be vaccinated due to medical or religious reasons may participate in the drawings by completing a vaccination exemption form found on the Student Health Service website.
For more details on the student vaccination reporting incentive program, go to www.uwyo.edu/alerts/campus-return/vaccination/index.html.