Houston, Texas, Dec. 6, 2021 – Houston Baptist University (HBU) is taking the health of students, faculty, and staff seriously. This past summer, the University’s Husky Strong Task Force launched a campus-wide Vaccination Registration Incentive Program to encourage students, faculty, and staff to voluntarily report their COVID-19 vaccination statuses.
“The Vaccination Incentive Program (VIP) was a critical component of HBU’s strategy to use rewards to communicate the value of choosing to become vaccinated. It created the opportunity to participants who had not yet gotten vaccinated to investigate their decision, and in some cases, provide an important incentive to prioritize and act on that decision. It is a great example of the value of using incentives to support the freedom of personal choice,” said John Holmes, HBU Associate Vice President for Facilities and Campus Operations.
Faculty, staff and students were invited to voluntarily self-report their vaccination statuses and upload a picture of their official vaccination cards online in a dedicated portal. The names of student respondents who self-reported their status by the Oct. 15 deadline were entered into a drawing for the chance for 1) one Platinum prize winner to have all tuition and fees paid for the fall 2021 and spring 2022 semesters, 2) two Gold prize winners to have all tuition and fees paid for the spring 2022 semester, and 3) three Silver prize winners to have all fees paid for the fall 2021 and spring 2022 semesters.
On Oct. 27, the names of six students were drawn from a pool of 2,000 participants and announced as winners of HBU’s campus-wide vaccination registration initiative during the University’s mid-week convocation.
Eduardo Corazon, a sophomore cyber engineering student and a member of HBU’s Honors College, was winner of the incentive program’s Platinum prize and will have all tuition and fees covered for the fall 2021 and spring 2022 semesters.
Corazon was shocked and in disbelief on learning his name was drawn as the top winner. “At first, I didn’t believe it, but I was very excited and relieved, and thanked God,” he said.
The HBU student, who was vaccinated last year, shared that he was motivated to get vaccinated by more than free tuition but concern for his and his parent’s health. “I am a Type I diabetic and both my mom and my dad are at high risk, so understandably I was worried about their health as well as my own,” said Corazon.
He and his parents have taken steps to protect themselves throughout the pandemic, but the HBU student shared that one of his relatives was on “death’s door” after contracting the virus but thankfully has since recovered.
“I look forward to a future when COVID is finally over and urge everyone to get vaccinated regardless of age so we can have collective immunity and I can get close to my loved ones and feel safe,” said Corazon.
In addition to covering the Platinum winner’s tuition and fees, HBU will cover all tuition and fees for the spring 2022 semester for Gold Prize winners, Eva Cruz and Stephanie Fuentes, and all fees for the fall 2021 and spring 2022 semesters for Silver Prize winners, Nay Armstrong, Slacna De La Cruz, and Sarah Benitez Mendoza.
The Husky Strong Task Force also provided faculty, staff, and students, who self-reported their vaccination statuses, with a $50 gift card to use at the HBU bookstore to thank each participant for joining forces to maintain a safe and healthy campus environment.
About Houston Baptist University
Houston Baptist University is an ethnically and religiously diverse private institution in Houston, TX, emphasizing a Christian liberal arts education. The University offers a wide range of majors and programs, as well as NCAA Division I athletics in the Southland Conference. Located in the heart of one of the nation’s largest metropolitan centers, HBU aims to develop citizens whose character, attitude and intellect are valuable contributions to thriving communities. Find out more at HBU.edu