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She's a COVID Millionaire, and Can't Believe It

Abbigail Bugenske is Ohio winner of vaccination prize, while New York rolls out scholarships
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 27, 2021 5:07 PM CDT
She's a COVID Millionaire, and Can't Believe It
In this image taken from video by the Office of the Ohio Governor, Abbigail Bugenske, 22, from Cincinnati, talks about her winnings.   (Office of Ohio Governor via AP)

(Newser) – Two stories from two different states from the annals of COVID vaccinations:

  • Happy in Ohio: Abbigail Bugenske, a 22-year-old from suburban Cleveland, is the first $1 million winner of her state's Vax-a-Million prize designed to boost vaccinations. "It absolutely has not processed yet," she says, per the AP. "I am still digesting it—and I like to say that it feels like this is happening to a different person. I cannot believe it." The mechanical engineer was on her way to buy a used car when she got the news, and she has no plans to quit her day job. In fact, "I think buying a used car is still in my future."

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  • Free rides in New York: The state of New York, meanwhile, unveiled a new incentive to encourage those ages 12 to 17 to get their shots: scholarships to four-year state colleges, reports the Democrat and Chronicle. The current yearly value of that—counting tuition, room, and board—is about $24,000. New York will hand out 50 scholarships in all, per NBC New York.
(Read more COVID-19 stories.)

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