DALLAS, Sept. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ -- Ford Motor Company Fund is launching a year-long education initiative to promote on-time high school graduation and college enrollment in partnership with Irving Independent School District. The Ford Driving Dreams Tour provides peer-to-peer support programs, scholarships, motivational pep rallies and an innovative district-wide contest.
With Ford's support, MacArthur High School is hosting Raul Magdaleno in a motivational rally to challenge students to be resilient and pursue their education. Rallies also will be held at Nimitz and Irving High Schools on September 19 and 20, and will be available online for all Irving ISD high school students.
"The FDD Tour is giving Irving ISD students a wealth of resources to help bolster their high school education and motivate them to successfully complete high school," said Dr. Dana Bedden, superintendent of schools, Irving ISD. "We are grateful to Ford for entrusting this new initiative to our school district and helping continue to put our students first."
Ford also announced a $35,000 donation to Irving ISD towards the purchase of two Ford Explorers to be used to transport students and staff to district authorized functions.
"We are excited to energize youth about the importance of education," said Jim Vella, president, Ford Motor Company Fund. "Ford has a longstanding commitment to education and investments in programs that help build communities, and we couldn't think of a better partner than Irving ISD to launch this innovative program."
All 9,269 high school students in Irving ISD will participate in an essay contest that launches this week. Students will submit an essay describing what drives their dream. Ford will award 1st, 2nd and 3rd place prizes at each of the Irving ISD high schools. The top five essays, selected by a panel of educators and local community leaders, will enter a public online video competition. These five finalists (one per school) will win an Apple MacBook Pro and a Flip video camera to create a video based on their essay. Starting November 30, the public can vote for the winning video. The winner will receive a scholarship for $5,000 and a $3,000 grant to be donated to an after-school program of his or her choice.
Irving ISD freshmen and seniors can apply for college scholarships in early 2013. The scholarships for freshmen are intended as a "promise scholarship" to help motivate them to complete high school and pursue higher education.
In addition Ford Fund is supporting the integration of a national leadership training model from ASPIRA for Irving ISD high schools. This national model will incorporate leadership training, cultural enrichment activities, and community action projects into the current JOURNEYS program, a college and career readiness leadership program.
For more information on the FDD Tour and the "What Drives Your Dream" contest, please visit fordscholars.org/drivingdreams and irvingisd.net.
About Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services works with community partners to advance driving safety, education and community life. The Ford Motor Company Fund has operated for more than 60 years with ongoing funding from Ford Motor Company. The award-winning Ford Driving Skills for Life program teaches new drivers through a variety of hands-on and interactive methods. Innovation in education is encouraged through national programs that enhance high school learning and provide college scholarships and university grants. Through the Ford Volunteer Corps, more than 25,000 Ford employees and retirees each year work on projects that better their communities in more than 20 countries. For more information, visit http://community.ford.com.
SOURCE Ford Motor Company Fund
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