18-year-old with 2 jobs, heading to college wins $1M in vaccination lottery

Published: Aug. 5, 2021 at 3:15 PM EDT
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RALEIGH, N.C. (WBTV/Gray News) – An 18-year-old in North Carolina will have some significant help in paying her college tuition.

Audrey Chavous of Winston-Salem won the third $1 million drawing in the state’s COVID-19 vaccination lottery, WBTV reported.

“My first reaction, honestly, was pure shock,” Chavous said Wednesday during a press conference. “I didn’t think it was a real thing. I thought it was spam mail when I saw it in my email. I’m ecstatic. I have no words to describe how happy I am.”

Chavous, who currently works two jobs, plans to start her freshman year at Fayetteville State University. Now, with taxes, she has just over $702,000 to spare.

“My main thing to do with the money is to use it for school,” she said. “I’m going to use it for my undergrad and master’s.”

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper praised Chavous for doing her part to end the pandemic and said she set an example that others should follow.

Chavous said she decided to get vaccinated for the safety of herself and others.

“When COVID first became big, it took away my senior year and a saw how much it impacted everyone around me, including my classmates and teachers,” she said.

“Not only did I want to get vaccinated for my own peace of mind, but for everyone else who could have been affected by COVID, or anyone who has a sickness or anything that would prohibit them from living their lives normally.”

The drawing is part of the state’s “Bringing Summer Back” campaign, which was initiated to encourage North Carolina residents to get vaccinated for COVID-19.

Minors between the ages of 12 to 17, who have been vaccinated, are eligible for the $125,000 prize for post-secondary education, while the adult winner is awarded $1 million.

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