ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Two Montgomery County Students are the first to win $50,000 college scholarships in Maryland’s $1 million VaxU Scholarship Promotion.

The Maryland Higher Education Commission will announce two winners every Monday from July 12 to Labor Day. On the eighth week, four winners will be announced.

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  • Week one winners: Potomac and Silver Spring

Any vaccinated Marylander between the ages of 12 and 17 is eligible for a $50,000 college scholarship in the promotion. The system will use the same random generator system used for the state’s VaxCash promotion.

The program is a partnership between Maryland’s Higher Education Commission and Department of Health.

The $50,000 scholarship covers the equivalent of both tuition and fees at public and state institutions of higher learning, Hogan said.

The promotion starts Monday, July 12, and there will be a total of 20 drawings. Two winners will be picked every week for 8 weeks until Labor Day, which is when four winners will be picked.

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A total of $1 million in scholarship money will be rewarded. The funding comes from the American Rescue Plan and it will be rewarded in the form of either a prepaid college trust of a Maryland 529.

The prepaid college trust will go to winners aged 12-14, and the Maryland529 will be awarded to winners between 15 and 17.

If the winner decides they want to attend a private institution or an out-of-state school, they will be able to transfer the scholarship to a school of their choice.

“This is an outstanding and innovative approach to incentivize our youth to learn more about the countless higher education opportunities that are available to them here in Maryland,” said MHEC Secretary Dr. James D. Fielder. “We are proud to continue paving the way for access and success of their higher education goals.”

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“All you have to do is go out and get your shot in order to have a shot at winning a scholarship to the college of your choice,” said Hogan. “Promotions like this are just one more way that we are reinforcing the importance of getting every single Marylander that we can vaccinated against COVID-19, especially our young people. And it is clearer than ever before, these vaccines are extremely effective.”

CBS Baltimore Staff