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The 2018 Courageous Persuaders Scholarship Award Winners Are…

Grand Prize Courageous Persuaders Award ($3,000)

“Listen to the Signs”

Produced by: Shane Verkest | Frederick V. Pankow Center | Clinton Township, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “Making it more appealing to younger viewers made me watch and listen more than the others.”  | “It was fun to watch but it also got the message across.” | “It was interesting and made me want to pay attention because it was funny.”

State Farm Fan Favorite Award ($1,000 to Student and $2,500 to School)

“Resist the Temptation”

Produced by: Anthony Marx & Stefan Sapiano | International Academy | Bloomfield Hills, Michigan

The public had the chance to view all Finalist Commercials and vote for their favorite in April. The commercial that received the most “likes” was awarded the State Farm Fan Favorite Award.

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Detroit Auto Dealers Association Award – Dangers of Texting While Driving ($2,000)

“Get Comfortable”

Produced by: Wyatt & William Cuculis | Dallastown Area High School | Dallastown, Pennsylvania

Middle School Quotes | “This video was so eerie that it stuck with me.” | “I liked that it was kind of scary.” | “People can die from this and this video really made me feel that.”

Detroit Auto Dealers Association Award – Dangers of Underage Drinking ($2,000)


Produced by: Dakotah Hasley | Lenawee ISD TECH Center | Adrian, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “This video connected with me better than the others did.” | “I like this video the most because it is important to be safe in the choices we make so we don’t hurt the people around us.” | “I think that this video was very emotional and moving.”

Adcraft Detroit Award ($2,000)


Produced by: Will Baker | Careerline Tech Center | Holland, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “It really sends the message not to drink.” | “I liked it because it was unexpected.” | “It was edited well and I like how it showed me what could happen.”

Michelin Award ($2,000)


Produced by: Natalie Davis | Weber High School | Pleasant View, Utah

Middle School Quotes | “I thought that it was a really deep and true video.” | “The message was conveyed very well and it made an impact on me.” | “The message was really strong and the students did a really good job. I think it will grab the attention of others like it got mine.”

AutoTrader / Kelley Blue Book Award ($2,000)

“Leaving Prom”

Produced by: Jessica Lynch | Fenton High School | Fenton, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “It was so realistic and intense. It really opened my eyes.” | “I really like this video because it is important that kids our age know how harmful drinking and driving can be.” | “It scared me by showing the friends injured as well and I never want to see anything like that for myself.”

Harold and Carolyn Robison Foundation Award – Dangers of Underage Drinking ($2,000)

“The Day I Died”

Produced by: Lydia Oliver | Byron Center High School | Byron Center, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “I like that it looked like real injuries because it makes you realize how dangerous and serious texting and driving is.” | “Teens need to see the reality of texting and driving and this ad really makes my heart hurt.” | “I wouldn’t want the reason my family and friends to hurt because of my decision to text and drive.”

1st Place – Courageous Persuaders Award Dangers of Underage Drinking ($2,000)

“Hey, It’s Maddie”

Produced by: Maddie Miller | Lake Orion High School | Lake Orion, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “This video was very high quality and it felt so sad. I could see that actually happening to someone.” | “The inspiration of this video made it cool and really easy to connect to.” | “It really made me aware of the dangers of drinking because there were a lot of things talked about that I wouldn’t want to miss out on.”

Lindsey Renee Cianciolo Family – Memorial Fund ($1,500)

“Keep Your Word”

Produced by: Eli Fallon | Lake Orion High School | Lake Orion, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “I liked that it shows how it affects others and how and what you are losing when you drink and drive.” | “I really felt the importance of not just saying you won’t do something because that’s what your parents want you to say.” | “I liked this video because everyone thinks bad things won’t happen to them, but sometimes they do.”

Friends of Lindsey Renee Cianciolo Family – Memorial Fund ($1,500)

“You’re Not Alone”

Produced by: Trenton Woodbeck & Colin Shaughnessy | Fenton High School | Fenton, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “The video was very informational and super persuasive.” | “Since this video was so realistic, it had a very big impact on me.” | “I liked the intense way the video showed what can happen if you make poor choices.”

State Farm Award ($1,000)


Produced by: Hayley Giordano | West Brunswick High School | Shallotte, North Carolina

Middle School Quotes | “I liked the clear and strong voice used to talk about such an important topic.” | “I felt like she was actually talking to me because she caught my attention and held onto it.” | “I felt like this video gave the clearest reasons not to drink.”


Michigan Film and Digital Media Office Award ($1,000)

“Pieces to Pieces”

Produced by: Tyler Battershell | Lake Orion High School | Lake Orion, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “The way this video was set up was so cool. The fact that it was different made it interesting.” | “I felt like this was actually an ad for kids my age.” | “I liked how unique this video was and it gets the point across.”

2nd Place – Courageous Persuaders Award Dangers of Underage Drinking ($1,000)

“Voiceover Guy”

Produced by: Nathaniel Zaccagnini | Frederick V. Pankow Center | Clinton Township, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “I liked the humor in this video and I still understood that alcohol can harm me and others like me.” | “Making it funny made it appealing but the point was still made.” | “I liked that it was funny and persuasive because I pay better attention to the funny ones over the more serious ones.”

Courageous Persuaders Award – Texting & Driving ($1,000)

“Just Put Your Phone Away”

Produced by: Eitan Miller | Chatham High School | Chatham, New Jersey

Middle School Quotes | “This video was so catchy.” | “I liked that this video told you what was important in a fun way.” | “This ad was designed to make you remember it.”

3rd Place – Courageous Persuaders Award Dangers of Underage Drinking ($500)

“Don’t Pour Your Life Away”

Produced by: Alice Plummer, Lauren Bayless and Zach Donegan | Frederick V. Pankow Center | Clinton Township, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “I liked that it shows what you’ll lose if you choose to take a drink.” | “I think watching her lose everything was persuasive.” | “I understood that drinking meant she was throwing her life away and it made me not want to do it.”

Oakland University Award ($500)

“Take the Pledge”

Produced by: Mikaylah Duffield | Columbia Central High School | Brooklyn, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “I liked how dramatic it was, very convincing.” | “The video was very visual and realistic.” | “Good acting and a good message. This video really scares you into not texting and driving.”

College for Creative Studies Award ($250)

“Don’t Let Drinking Distort Your Future”

Produced by: Armanur Rahman and Santina Zeetow | Fitzgerald High School | Warren, Michigan

Middle School Quotes | “It was very alerting.” | “This video made the most sense to me and I liked how the message was presented.” | “The video was edited well and described the effects of drinking and driving clearly.”