NJM Insurance Group and Impact Teen Drivers Award $12,500 to Four Connecticut Schools

December 14, 2021

Students created PSAs on the dangers of distracted driving.

WEST TRENTON, NJ — Students at four high schools in Connecticut have won grants from NJM Insurance Group and teen driver safety non-profit, Impact Teen Drivers (ITD), for their PSAs in the Connecticut Just Drive contest. The awards will go toward educational supplies and tuition assistance.

A nationally recognized insurer and teen driver safety advocate, NJM sponsors the Just Drive competition, in partnership with Impact Teen Drivers, to inspire a distraction-free driving culture. Students representing 13 Connecticut schools created PSAs to provide solutions to distracted driving. A panel of qualified judges evaluated each campaign's concept, creativity, execution, and effectiveness of the message.

"We congratulate all the participating schools, teachers, advisors, and students for helping to make roadways safer in the Constitution State by addressing the leading cause of teen deaths: reckless and distracted driving," said Violet Marrero, NJM consumer safety director. "Together, we can continue to make lifesaving changes in attitudes and behaviors for Connecticut drivers and passengers of this and future generations."

PSA Middle School/High School Student Winners: Madison Stevenson from Arts at the Capitol Theater (Lebanon) wins first place and $5,000 for "Missed Memories." Second place and $2,500 is awarded to Matthew Sinofsky from Suffield High School (West Suffield) for "Just a Second." Third place and $1,000 is awarded to Finn Ryder from Wilton High School (Wilton) for "You Decide…"

PSA Middle School/High School Online Vote Winners: Lucas Mangum from Wilton High School (Wilton) wins first place and $2,000 for "Temptations." Second place and $1,500 is awarded to Brianna Lizano-Quesada from Norwalk High School (Norwalk) for "Don't Risk It." Third place and $500 is awarded to Finn Ryder from Wilton High School (Wilton) for "You Decide…"

"The ITD team is proud to work with NJM in Connecticut to help save lives and reduce injuries," said Kelly Browning, Ph.D., executive director of Impact Teen Drivers. "The Just Drive contest invites the young people to take an active role in the health and safety of Connecticut drivers. We are grateful for NJM's generous support that allows us to provide our evidence-based programs to engage, educate, and empower teens and their influencers to make lifesaving decisions in the car."

For decades, car crashes have been the leading cause of death for young people, and, according to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 20,000 fatalities occurred on roadways between January and June of this year, up 18.4% since last year. Fatal car crashes take the lives of nearly 4,000 young people each year, but they are preventable. NJM and Impact Teen Drivers work with Connecticut safety champions of all ages and backgrounds to encourage good decision-making for both drivers and passengers.

About NJM's Teen Driver Safety Program

NJM's Teen Driver Safety Programs are offered at no cost to high schools in Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. NJM's research-based programs empower parents and teens with the information and resources they need to build safe driving skills. The Programs have reached more than 205,000 parents and teens since their launch in 2013 and were recognized in 2016 by the National Safety Council for their demonstrated results in reducing behaviors among teens that lead to crashes. For more information about NJM's Teen Driver Safety Programs, or to schedule a program in your area please visit njm.com/teen-driver-safety.

About NJM Insurance Group

Founded in 1913, NJM is a regional property and casualty insurer with a national reputation for customer satisfaction. The Company offers auto, homeowners, renters, and umbrella coverage in Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. For more information, visit njm.com.