Txt Spk Safety Scholar Wins Bridgestone Contest
Bridgestone’s annual US Safety Scholars contest has a 2009 winner, in addition to two runners-up, all of whom will receive $5,000 towards their college studies and a set of Bridgestone or Firestone tyres. The competition highlighted a wealth of creative talent, as entrants took their cue from an eclectic range of inspirations including rap videos, emotional personal stories and important topical issues.
A team of judges narrowed down the more than 800 videos to select the top 10 finalists for online judging. More than 12,000 votes on www.safetyscholars.com were tallied to determine the three Grand Prize winners, whose videos can be seen on the website.
“For the past three years, Safety Scholars has proven to be one of the most effective ways for us to communicate our automotive safety message to teens,” said Christine Karbowiak, executive vice president, Community and Corporate Relations, Bridgestone Americas. “These videos are so impactful,” she continued. “Last year’s Safety Scholars’ videos were used as public service announcements, airing more than 9,000 times and reaching more than 53 million people. This year we hope to reach even more viewers with the ultimate goal of making the roads safer for everyone.”
The winners’ videos may be used on television stations nationwide as part of a public service announcement campaign. These public service announcements are supported by Bridgestone Americas in cooperation with Driver’s Edge, a national non-profit organization which provides free classroom and behind-the-wheel defensive driving instruction for teens in cities across the United States.
Eric Dachman, an 18-year-old from Scottsdale, Arizona, and rising freshman at Arizona State, warns of texting while driving in his first-prize winning video. It shows the windshield of a moving car, and as the driver sends more and more texts, it becomes covered with them, impairing his driving ability. The video ends with the simple message: “Use a designated texter.” The video can be seen at the bottom of the article.
Juliana Hinojosa, a 19-year-old from San Antonio, Texas, is a sophomore at Texas State University. Her emotional video is inspired by her 22-year-old brother Ryan, who was killed in an auto accident at the hands of a drunk driver. The video depicts various family members and friends who were impacted by Ryan’s death. Hinojosa summarizes her message to other drivers with, “Don’t drive drunk…you never know who you’ll wind up hurting.”
Third-placed Christopher Baugh, an 18-year-old from of Glen Allen, Virginia, created a humorous piece reminiscent of a typical hip-hop music video. Instead of boasting about flashy rims, hydraulics and nice cars, however, the rapper focuses on safety tips such as buckling seat belts and reading road signs. Baugh is an incoming freshman at Syracuse University.