Richardson, TX,
08:00 AM

Creativity Is Driving the Message

Texas students leading the teen driver safety cause

“Don’t drink and drive.” “Don’t drive while distracted.” A couple of phrases most teens have heard hundreds of times from parents, at school, or on the news.

Hearing the message is one thing, but what really drives the message home and creates change? In Texas, its peer-to-peer communication. Teens speaking and sharing with other teens, in their own words and ways.

Teens were challenged to convey the importance of practicing safe driving habits through visual arts. The Texas A&M University Transportation Institute’s Teens in the Driver’s Seat organization and State Farm, together, host the poster and video contest. The ninth annual “Driving the Message” event was held at CityLink in Richardson, TX in the spring of 2016.

This year’s contest saw a record number of entries from across the state, with 120 junior high student posters, 148 high school student posters, and 35 videos submitted by students.

Lindsey Morrison, a high school senior and graphic designer, won the top prize in the poster category. “I’ve always loved art and just anything creative,” shared Lindsey.

The contest allows students like Lindsey to visually ‘drive’ the message of safety home for their peers. While her artwork for the contest was one of her favorite projects, she realizes it serves a more important purpose than visual appeal. 2016 has seen the highest number of traffic-related fatalities in Texas to date. “This contest raises awareness for teen drivers.” Morrison emphasized.

The “Driving the Message” poster and video contest is once again accepting submissions from middle and high school students from across the state of Texas. The successful program has expanded to several other states encouraging students and their peers throughout the country to make safe decisions behind the wheel