COVID-19 safety incentives offered to campus community


By University Communications

Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson vaccinations will be available. Photo ID is required, and if you are needing your second shot, you must have proof of vaccination.

Trevor Heath, Staff Writer

As classes resume in the middle of a pandemic, Southeastern Oklahoma State University is trying to navigate the situation.

Not many rules can be put in place by the university to try and slow the spread of COVID-19 due to the state’s government mandates. An executive order issued by Governor Kevin Stitt forbids schools from requiring masks or vaccinations. Because of this, Southeastern is offering incentives to students who mask up and provide proof of vaccination.

Several professors across campus are offering extra points to students who wear their masks in class. One of these professors is Dena Rymel. She says that one issue right now is students having to be quarantined in their rooms for two weeks, which makes them fall behind. When students are able to attend class regularly, they have a higher passing percentage.

One way to avoid being quarantined is to be vaccinated. To encourage this, Southeastern announced a $100 vaccination incentive.

University President Dr. Thomas Newsom said he wants to “create awareness of the availability of the vaccine and encourage people who are interested in receiving the vaccine. The university wants to do everything possible to keep students, faculty and staff healthy.” He emphasized that this is a strictly voluntary program.

The Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccinations will be offered for free at the Durant campus on Sept. 8 and Sept.22. The Oklahoma Department of Health Mobile Unit will be located on the campus loop in front of the Glen D. Johnson Student Union. This opportunity will be available from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Students, faculty and staff have all been added to the Blackboard course called COVID VACCINE INCENTIVE. To qualify for the incentive, proof of COVID-19 vaccination or exemption documentation must be uploaded by Sept. 30.

Vaccination incentives will be dispersed on Oct. 15, 2021.