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Ford Media Center
Ford Motor Company is expanding its long-time support of the GRAMMY Foundation®’s GRAMMY in the Schools® initiative by donating additional money through Ford’s innovative Drive 4 UR School program – as well as a new 2015 Ford vehicle to the 2015 Music Educator of the Year.
The Music Educator Award™ was established by the GRAMMY Foundation and The Recording Academy® to recognize current educators (K through college, public and private schools) who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education, and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in their schools.
The Music Educator Award and honorariums are supported by a grant from Ford Motor Company Fund, the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company. Ford Motor Company will also award a new 2015 car or truck to Jared Cassedy, winner of the Music Educator Award. Cassedy teaches at Windham High School in Windham, N.H.
In addition, 25 semifinalists for the GRAMMY Foundation’s Music Educator Award had the chance to earn up to $6,000 for their school’s music program through Drive 4 UR School, a unique Ford vehicle test drive program at local dealerships. In November, Diamond Bar High School high school got a surprise visit from Ryan Seacrest, the radio and television host who is the GRAMMY Foundation's Honorary Board Chair. Seacrest participated in the program with local students.
The Drive 4 UR School program helps schools all over the country go further by raising money to support extracurricular activities, including music. Since it was launched in 2007, the program has raised nearly $25 million for schools throughout the U.S.
“Education is the cornerstone of a brighter future, and we are proud to work with the GRAMMY Foundation because of our shared commitment to providing educational opportunities for all,” said Pamela Alexander, director of community development, Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services. “Expanding our association to include another innovative Ford community program and a brand new Ford vehicle for the Music Educator of the Year is a great way to award the hard work of teachers and schools throughout our country.”
Ford Motor Company was also presenting sponsor this week of the Sixth annual GRAMMY In The Schools Live! — A Celebration of Music & Education, which featured performances by GRAMMY® nominee Hunter Hayes and high school singers and instrumentalists from around the U.S.
Since 2009, Ford has worked with the GRAMMY Foundation to provide GRAMMY Signature Schools grants and GRAMMY Camp® - Basic Training sessions in almost 20 cities around the U.S. The grants provide funding for music programs in schools with financial need. The Basic Training sessions allow students to learn about career opportunities in the music industry.
Ford Motor Company Fund has a long history of innovative educational programs and partnerships and invests more than $8 million a year, about one-third of its annual financial support, in scholarships and other education initiatives.
For more information on the Ford Motor Company Fund and the GRAMMY Foundation visit
Ford Motor Company is a global company based in Dearborn, Michigan. The company designs, manufactures, markets and services a full line of Ford cars, trucks, SUVs, electrified vehicles and Lincoln luxury vehicles, provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company and is pursuing leadership positions in electrification, autonomous vehicles and mobility solutions. Ford employs approximately 203,000 people worldwide. For more information regarding Ford, its products and Ford Motor Credit Company, please visit www.corporate.ford.com.
Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services works with community partners to advance driving safety, education and community life. The Ford Motor Company Fund has operated for more than 60 years with ongoing funding from Ford Motor Company. Ford Driving Skills for Life teaches new drivers through a variety of hands-on and interactive methods. Innovation in education is encouraged through programs that enhance high school learning and provide college scholarships and university grants. Through the Ford Volunteer Corps, more than 25,000 Ford employees and retirees each year work on projects that better their communities in 30 countries. For more information, visit http://community.ford.com.
The GRAMMY Foundation was established in 1988 to cultivate the understanding, appreciation and advancement of the contribution of recorded music to American culture. The Foundation accomplishes this mission through programs and activities that engage the music industry and cultural community as well as the general public. The Foundation works in partnership year-round with its founder, The Recording Academy, to bring national attention to important issues such as the value and impact of music and arts education and the urgency of preserving our rich cultural heritage. In recognition of the significant role of teachers in shaping their students' musical experiences, The Recording Academy and the GRAMMY Foundation partnered to present their first Music Educator Award. Open to current U.S. music teachers in kindergarten through college, the Music Educator Award will be presented at the Special Merit Awards ceremony during GRAMMY Week 2015. For more information about the Music Educator Award, please visit GRAMMYMusicTeacher.com. For more information about the Foundation, please visit www.grammyfoundation.org. For breaking news and exclusive content, please like "GRAMMY in the Schools®" on Facebook, follow the GRAMMY Foundation on Twitter (@GRAMMYFdn) and join us on Instagram (@GRAMMYFdn).