Local Princeton student wins “Do It for Babydog” full ride scholarship

PRINCETON, W.Va. (WVVA) — Students at Princeton Middle School are getting COVID-19 vaccination motivation from West Virginia’s first dog.

The new, second round of the ‘Do It for Babydog’ vaccine incentive sweepstakes is wrapping up its first week of surprise visits and gift giving from Governor Jim Justice and the beloved sweepstakes mascot, Babydog.

One lucky Princeton Middle School student reaping the rewards of getting vaccinated, by winning a four-year, full ride scholarship to any public school or university in West Virginia.

Seventh grader and aspiring scientist, Jeremiah Harding, now equipped to chase those dreams at the collegiate level.

“I am just very excited and happy that I won this,” said Harding.

With a family of five children, Harding’s mother says no better gift could have been given.

“I said, ‘What would you do if you got a scholarship?’ He said that would really help us, wouldn’t that mom,” said Sharon Harding. “And I said yeah that would.”

Supporting dreams while influencing safety is what Governor Justice sees as the mountain state mindset. “To put him on the way to have a full four-year full scholarship and everything, this to me is what West Virginia truly is,” said Justice.

Harding has taken on that mindset, getting vaccinated for his own and other’s safety.

“Because whenever the COVID started, I knew that it wouldn’t be good,” said Harding. “So when I got the COVID vaccination, I knew that we would be safe and happy.”

The push for vaccinations still going strong in the mountain state, Governor Justice saying he will hold has many sweepstakes as it takes to get shots in the arms of all West Virginians.

“We got to get to the kids,” Governor Justice said. “We tailored all this towards this kids on the second go around, we’re trying everything in the world that we can.”