DEARBORN, Mich., Oct. 15, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Ford Motor Company and Ford Motor Company Fund are once again offering targeting students enrolled at Historically Black Colleges and Universities the opportunity to compete in the Ford HBCU Community Challenge. Student teams are encouraged to submit innovative proposals on community issues for a chance to win $75,000 in scholarships and prizes for their university and community.
For the third consecutive year, the HBCU Community Challenge will be conducted in partnership with the Tom Joyner and Rickey Smiley morning shows. The program encourages students to not only go further with their education, but to help their communities. The program's theme is "Building Sustainable Communities."
Each proposal should creatively address a pressing community need that focuses on at least one of these areas – mobility, alternative energy, sustainability/water and systematic approaches to meeting community needs. Student and university scholarships will be awarded to the winning team, with each finalist project being awarded a grant for teams to implement their innovative work.
Three teams will be selected to present their proposals in December to a panel of judges at Ford World Headquarters. Judges include radio personality Tom Joyner and Ford executives.
"Building upon the success and excitement from last year, we are eager to see the ingenuity of the students' submissions," said Shawn Thompson, manager, Ford Multicultural Marketing. "The forward thinking and fresh approaches to sustainability are inspiring. We look forward to the presentations in Dearborn."
Bethune-Cookman University, Florida A&M University and Spelman College were the finalists in last year's challenge. Spelman College won first place with its innovative program that sought to address healthier food options in its community. Interested students attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities can learn more about the competition and submit their proposals by visiting www.blackamericaweb.com/hbcuchallenge or www.rickeysmileymorningshow.com/hbcuchallenge, between now and Nov. 1.
A first for the program, listeners of the Tom Joyner and Rickey Smiley morning shows will be able to vote online for their favorite proposal from Nov. 23 through Dec. 6.
Be sure to join the program's social conversation by following hashtag #FordHBCU.
"Ford Fund is committed to going further in the community and helping students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities," said Pamela Alexander, director, Community Development, Ford Fund. "We are in our third year and are excited to work with the Tom Joyner and Rickey Smiley morning shows, and to engage the Historically Black Colleges and Universities community."
The HBCU Community Challenge reflects Ford's century-long commitment to supporting the African American community, and its focus on education. Ford Motor Company Fund, the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company, invests in more than $8 million a year, about one-third of its annual financial support, in scholarships and other education initiatives.
About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Michigan, manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 195,000 employees and 66 plants worldwide, the company's automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit www.corporate.ford.com.
About Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services
Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services works with community and global partners to advance driving safety, education and community life. Ford Motor Company Fund has operated for more than 65 years with ongoing funding from Ford Motor Company. Ford Driving Skills for Life is free, interactive, hands-on safety training focused on skill development and driving techniques, while addressing inexperience, distractions and impaired driving. Innovation in education is encouraged through Ford Blue Oval Scholars, Ford Next Generation Learning and other inspiring programs that enhance high school learning and provide college scholarships and university grants. The Ford Volunteer Corps enlists more than 30,000 Ford employees and retirees each year to work on local projects that strengthen their communities and improve people's lives in more than 40 countries around the world. For more information, visit http://community.ford.com.
For news releases, related materials and high-resolution photos and video, visit www.media.ford.com.
SOURCE Ford Motor Company