DMV: Lt. Gov. Wyman, Teens and Safety Advocates Launch 2017 DMV-Travelers Teen Safe Driving Video Contest

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For Immediate Release
September 20, 2016
Lt. Gov. Wyman, Teens and Safety Advocates Launch
2017 DMV-Travelers Teen Safe Driving Video Contest
Theme “One Split Second…” Connects Safe Driving to Teens’ Decision Making
WEST HARTFORD –  Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman today joined teens and safety advocates to discuss how one split second in a decision about driving safety could make a difference in the lives of these youngest drivers.  “One Split Second…” is the theme for the 2017 DMV-Travelers video contest,  which state officials, advocates and teens unveiled this afternoon at AAA Driving School in West Hartford.
“Last year alone, 16- and 17-year olds were involved in more than 4,000 car crashes in Connecticut. It’s imperative that we are teaching young drivers to be responsible behind the wheel—not just for their safety but for the safety of everyone on the roads,” said Lt. Governor Wyman. “I applaud Commissioner Bzdyra, Travelers, and our other partners for their commitment to ensuring our young people understand that driving is a privilege and a responsibility.”
DMV Commissioner Michael Bzdyra said, “The theme of this year’s contest connects the importance of teens’ decision making to safe driving in a concise and powerful way.  A lot can happen in ‘one split second,’ and this theme will provide teens with a very creative starting point to showcase their video talents and at the same time provide a very educational message to their peers.”
Fourteen student advisors from six different high schools created this theme with the idea that it only takes one second for teens behind the wheel or with friends to make a positive or negative decision related to driving.   The students also said this theme was meant to be open-ended to spark creativity among students entering the contest.
“We fully support the Connecticut DMV’s effort to educate teens about the importance of safe driving,” said Henry Edinger, Chief Customer Officer at Travelers. “Hearing friends and peers talk about good driving habits can carry more weight with teens, and we are hopeful that the contest will spark conversation and encourage young drivers to take precautions behind the wheel.”
Since the contest began in 2008, over 3,000 students across the state have participated representing more than 100 high schools. More information about the contest can be found at  The contest is open to all public, private and home-schooled high school students in Connecticut. 
The contest features increased prize money totaling up to $24,000 for winning schools and students, along with a formal awards gala for all contest winners, and entries can now be submitted electronically without the requirement to be mailed.  This year’s theme is:  “One Split Second…”, and the deadline for video submissions is December 15, 2016.  
The launch of this year’s contest took place today at inside a driving school classroom at the AAA office in West Hartford.  AAA has offered to show videos from this year’s contest during their driving school classes across the state. 
“At the AAA Driving School, we don’t just teach our students to drive, we teach them to think,” said Jennifer Shorette, who is the director of AAA Driving School.  “So, we look forward to sharing the award winning videos in our classrooms, in an effort to underscore the importance of making good choices.”
More information about the contest can be found at
Summary of contest requirements:
  • The public service announcement video can be up to 45 seconds long.
  • The video must demonstrate the theme:  “One Split Second…” and show the contest hashtag #OneSecond
  • It must also address two specific teen driving laws.
  • The PSA must have a multicultural or diversity component because driving involves teens from all backgrounds, including race, color, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, disability, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, culture, etc.  Bi-lingual/multi-cultural videos are welcomed and encouraged.
  • Teams of students are limited to a maximum of 5 members, including the student director.
  • The PSA must feature at least two teens, and include the idea, mention or use of a parental figure in video.  (Parent doesn’t actually have to appear in video).
  • Entries can be submitted electronically through the online program DropBox.  For detailed instructions, visit
Summary of prize money and awards:
  • Travelers, the contest prize sponsor, increased from last year the monetary awards to schools by $1,000 for first, second and third places.  First place will receive $6,000, second place will receive $5,000 and third place will receive $4,000. 
  • Winning student teams will receive up to $1,250 in Visa Gift cards with amounts that vary depending on the award.
  • New awards will also be given to schools and its students for videos.  The award categories are best original music, along with best uses of humor, parental figure and community members. 
  • A social media award for students will be offered by Travelers to encourage promotion of teens’ work and safety message of the contest.    This award is open to all entries that meet contest requirements.
  • The Connecticut Department of Transportation Office of Highway Safety will offer a new award professionally remake the first-place winning entry to be aired at venues across the state.
  • A cash prize of $1,000 will go to the school with the video showing the best multicultural message and has been underwritten by Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital.
A panel of judges comprised of safety advocates, health experts and state officials will select the winners. Past contest winners can be found on YouTube at:
Student advisors who worked on the project are Kojo Appiah and Luc Milam of Xavier High School in Middletown; Hannah Chua-Reyes, Alexandra Porczak and Maggie Silbo of Mercy High School in Middletown; Sam Fiske, Colman Galgovich, Devin Hartzog, Yusuf Malik, Armani Nieves and Alexander Walshaw of William H. Hall High School in West Hartford; Tyler Lemire of Arts at the Capitol Theater in Willimantic; Dylan Madden of W.F. Kaynor Technical High School in Waterbury; and Angela Zhu of Cheshire High School.
Other promotional contest partners include the Connecticut Police Chiefs Association; AAA, the Connecticut State Police; Mourning Parents Act (!MPACT), the Connecticut Children's Medical Center; Yale-New Haven Children's Hospital; Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center; The Connecticut Emergency Nurses Association, the state Department of Public Health; The state Department of Insurance, the state Department of Transportation; and the state Division of Criminal Justice.

Content Last Modified on 9/20/2016 3:16:05 PM