Burger Law started a scholarship for teens who are affecting change with the issue of social media and driving. It began over a year ago and we have received 150+ applications from passionate young people all over the US.
The scholarship awards $2,000 towards the education of a young student, either finishing their last year of high school or in an undergraduate/graduate institution, who demonstrates a way to effectively change the behavior of social media and driving.
There were 3,477 deaths and 391,000 injuries in the U.S. from car accidents due to distracted driving in 2015, and that number is only rising. Looking at your phone for only five seconds while driving at 55 miles per hour is equal to driving the length of a football field – with your eyes closed! Our winner is Kate Kouplen from Jenks Oklahoma! Kate is a senior in high school who really blew us away both with her submission and who she is in her community. Kate is not only an academic superstar, she also tutors for Kumon, is involved in a long list of clubs, and has hundreds of volunteer hours with organizations within her community.
Kate’s solution presented for the Dangers of Social Media and Driving Scholarship is very compelling. She proposes to launch a public awareness campaign called “Focus on Your Speed, NOT on Your Feed.” In this proposed awareness campaign, Kate calls for the use of billboards, tv, radio, and social media to promote the campaign. She also would call for the support of local and national law enforcement agencies to spread the message. Working on both the national and local levels to spread the awareness, this campaign would permeate into the lives of drivers from every age and walk of life. To address the dated laws that only limit texting and driving and not social media and driving, Kate would have driver’s education programs include this message to inform new drivers before they hit the roads.
We are grateful for every application we received, and this choice was a difficult one to make. Congratulations to Kate for her hard work and her creative solution! We will be taking action around Kate’s “Focus on Your Speed, NOT on Your Feed” proposal, so keep your eyes out for what we’ve got in store!