Verizon Wireless and UNCF (United Negro College Fund) today announced that New Jersey resident Danielle Biggs, a senior at South Brunswick High School, took first place in the New York Metro region division of the 2011 Verizon Wireless/UNCF Black History Month Essay Contest. Biggs was presented with a $5,000 college scholarship plus an HP Netbook, and a Motorola DROID X smartphone by Pat Devlin, president of the Verizon Wireless New York Metro Region.

Biggs is one of three winners from the New York Metro region and 15 winners from across the Northeast who will share $60,000 in college scholarship money. The winners were selected from more than 793 entries in the essay contest which asked them to write a 500-word essay on the topic of how the evolution of wireless technology has changed their lives. The essays were submitted during February in honor of Black History Month. UNCF reviewed the essays and selected the winners.

Other winners from the New York Metro region include:

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  • Second Place– Omoailue Agans-Oliha from Cambria Heights, NY: $4,000 college scholarship, HP Netbook, and a Motorola DROID X smartphone
  • Third Place– Uniquia Waterman from Brooklyn, NY: $3,000 college scholarship, HP Netbook, and a Motorola DROID X smartphone

“In recent years, wireless technology has become a much more integral and important part of our society,” said Michael L. Lomax, Ph.D., UNCF president and CEO.  “This contest is a great opportunity to encourage students to understand how this affects their lives and to compete for scholarships to help pay for their college education.  We thank Verizon Wireless for their continued support of UNCF and for investing in our next generation of scientists, teachers, business executives, doctors and lawyers.” 

“Each student who submitted an essay for the Verizon Wireless/UNCF Black History Month Essay Contest demonstrated an advanced understanding of the role that technology plays in their everyday lives and how it will continue to shape everyone’s future,” said Pat Devlin, president, Verizon Wireless New York Metro Region.  “We’re honored to provide these scholarships and devices that will help the students further their education at leading four-year colleges.”

To enter the contest, students had to maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.0, plan to attend an accredited two- or four-year college or university in the Fall of 2011, and reside in one of the following states: Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, or Washington, D.C.

This Black History Month Essay Contest is one of a variety of educational and diversity programs supported by Verizon Wireless. With a diverse workforce of over 82,000, Verizon Wireless drives workplace diversity by establishing programs to encourage the hiring and advancement of individuals from a wide range of backgrounds.

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