Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control sponsoring “PSA Challenge” for students

2010_headerCapitalizing on young people’s enthusiasm for telling stories on video, the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) is sponsoring a “PSA Challenge” for all Virginia middle schools, high schools, colleges and universities. Students are encouraged to produce 30-60 second video public service announcements (PSAs) with the tag line “Alcohol Has No Place…”. Prizes of $1,500, $500 and $300 will be awarded to the top three schools that demonstrate best creativity and communication of theme.

“We’ve designed this competition as a fun activity addressing a serious topic,” said Joe Cannon, Special Agent in Charge of ABC’s Education team. “As part of our public safety mission, ABC is dedicated to educating students about the legal consequences and adverse effects of underage and high risk drinking. Traditionally, we’re on the production side— issuing brochures, posters and presentations; now we’re looking forward to students taking the lead and communicating their point of view.”

“From drama clubs to student government organizations and everybody in between, this project is relevant to any student in the Commonwealth,” said ABC Education Coordinator Marisa Harris, the “PSA Challenge” project leader. “We hope school faculty and staff will help us promote this project and create a deluge of thought-provoking PSAs produced by students.”

Guidelines for participation are on ABC’s Web site www.abc.virginia.gov under the heading “PSA Challenge.” ABC emphasized that sophisticated cameras, editing software and experience are not required. Entries must be postmarked no later than February 26, 2010.

The “PSA Challenge” is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. The cash awards will be issued to the winning schools to support underage and high-risk drinking prevention efforts.