This award was given to two groups this year for their efforts to promote traffic safety to their peers.
Primary/Secondary School Category: Makena Prevost
Makena Prevost is a high school freshman and member of Girl Scout Troop 18378 of Orono. When Makena needed a community service project to earn her Girl Scout Silver Award, she came up with an idea that addressed mental health. The idea was to include caregiver information in certain Minnesota driver’s license records to let first responders at a crash scene know that a person in the vehicle has someone dependent on them who might need extra care. Sgt. Pete Ekenberg of the Corcoran Police Department connected Makena with the Department of Public Safety Driver and Vehicle Services division and Minnesota legislators to make it happen. As a result, legislation was passed on July 1, 2023, and went into effect August 1.
Post-Secondary School Category: Darren Tanubrata, Aarushi Vyas, and Elizabeth Wang
Darren Tanubrata, Aarushi Vyas, and Elizabeth Wang, all interns with the Shreya R. Dixit Memorial Foundation, were instrumental in researching and evaluating potential traffic safety programs for the State of Minnesota targeting younger drivers.
The initiative for the TZD Younger Driver State Action Team aimed to find a comprehensive program that not only focused on younger drivers, but also included traffic safety components for passengers and college students.Among the interns’ tasks were to identify safety programs and then research and compare various aspects of the programs such as content breadth, availability across socioeconomic status, availability across ages 0 to 25, school involvement, and ease of implementation. Their recommendation played a significant part in the selection of the Impact Teen Driver program that will be implemented statewide.
- Ava Chen, Kylie Karsky, and Molly McCloud
- Princeton High School SADD
- Avery Malone
- Sam Fronek, Iesh Gujral, Abhi Nallamalli, Suvarna Nallamalli, and Amy Wang (for their work on the Distraction-Free Life Club’s Youth Outreach Team at Eden Prairie High School)
- Key Club at Lincoln High School, Thief River Falls, MN