Drunk Driving PSA award money goes to technology

Allison Brissette, Staff Writer

In the winter of late 2015-16, the LHS sports broadcasting class entered a Public Service Announcement video competition and won $10,000 for the school, specifically designated for “technology purposes.” Their objective was to make a video based on the effects of drunk driving. LHS alumni Billy Reno, who was part of the team that created the video, stated that he very much recognized the importance of the competition stating “drunk driving is a serious issue and needs to be addressed.”

It’s been a while since the the prize money was collected I set out to determine the following: “where did the money go?”

LHS alumni Matthew Belden, who also took part in creating the video, said, “they gave our class a pizza lunch, and after that we never heard anything else about where it went, only a rumour it went towards a new sound system.”

Mike Hill, the sports broadcasting teacher at LHS and manager of Ludlow Community Television Confirmed some of what Belden said and added that “The school purchased a new lighting board for the auditorium to replace the old one.”

The Theatrix Console was purchased in August, 2016 for $4,764, according to Edward Dunn, Ludlow Public Schools Business Consultant.The lighting board is a necessity for control of the auditorium;  its functions include dimming lights and turning individual sections.

The remainder of the money was left to the head of the IT department, and there was a rumor that it contributed to the school’s recent Chromebook purchase. However, Mr. Dunn said that the money award did not contribute to the purchasing of any Chromebooks.

Besides the pizza, the competition certainly has benefited the students outside of the classroom. LHS alumni Billy Reno stated that the competition made the class as a whole “better people,” and that “knowing how well we could work together boosted all of our confidences.”

Mr. Hill also said that he witnessed all of kids working very hard, and was especially proud of them when they took the time to work on their video not only in school, but took the time to meet together in their free time to perfect it. Matt Belden also noted that he used the competition on every college and job application he had, and he currently attends college and holds a job.

The PSA Competition was certainly a great thing all together. It opened up many eyes to the horrors of drunk driving, and allowed the boys not only a grade boost, but a priceless change in character. The seven members of the sports broadcasting class left the school a gift that we can benefit from for many years, and a lesson that lasts a lifetime.