New York - Samsung's Four Seasons of Hope philanthropic
initiative gave away $1 million in technology products, software, and
educational programming and grants to 21 schools this afternoon.
With help from its partners, Best Buy, Microsoft, DirecTV and New
York Giants' quarterback Eli Manning presented the grand prize -- a $210,000
technology package -- to Capistrano Valley High School in Mission Viejo, Calif.,
during ceremonies at the Samsung Experience showroom at the Time Warner Building, here.
The finalist schools were nominated by parents, students,
teachers and principals, who were among more than 7,500 people to submit essays
online about how their favorite school would benefit from improved technology
tools in the classroom. A panel of expert judges, including TWICE editor in
chief Steve Smith, narrowed the field to the 21 finalists, and Capistrano Valley
High School and its nominating
essay written by parent Wendy Harder were voted the best by more than 200,000
public online votes.
"My success as a football player is tied to the excellent
education I received," said Eli Manning. "I am proud to partner with
Samsung's Four Seasons of Hope education initiative to give those same
opportunities to students across the U.S. Now
more than ever, it's important to remember that a little hope can make a big
The million-dollar giveback echoes findings from a recent survey,
Samsung's National Tech in The Classroom survey, that revealed 77 percent of
Americans think the K-12 schools in their communities lack the technology
access needed to help kids succeed in the 21st century. Respondents to the
survey further named technology teaching tools among the top three needs for
companies to support in local classrooms.
"We know that too many schools in our country do not have
the technology tools they need to best teach our children, and today's
million-dollar giveaway through Samsung's Four Seasons of Hope and with our
partners Best Buy, Microsoft and DirecTV is our effort to help address the
technology and learning gaps in our country," said David Steel, strategic
marketing executive VP for Samsung Electronics America.
The first-place school wins $210,000 in cutting-edge Samsung
products, Microsoft software, DirecTV educational television programming, cash grants,
Best Buy @15 gift cards and a classroom assistant dog. Fifteen first-place
winners receive similar $50,000 prize packages, and the five second-place
winners receive $10,000 Best Buy @15 gift cards. In addition, the nominating
essayist for each school will receive a Samsung Go netbook for submitting a