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Ford Media Center
San Juan, PR. Oct. 19, 2016 – Today, Ford Motor Company Fund will launch its signature program, Ford Driving Dreams Tour, for the first time in Puerto Rico. The Ford Driving Dreams Tour is designed to provide educational resources and scholarships to motivate and help students graduate on time and pursue college. Ford Fund’s efforts in Puerto Rico are part of a long-term investment of $100,000 for educational resources.
“Ford is committed to helping communities bridge the gap between education and students who deserve a path to higher education because the lack of resources should never determine their academic success,” said Jim Vella, president, Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services.
Four-hundred students from four alternative high schools will attend the kick-off event at The Condado Plaza in San Juan and participate in a full day of high energy motivational activities including a pep rally. Students will also be invited to participate in the What Drives your Dreams? essay contest. Latin singer/songwriter Pedro Capó will speak to the students and perform. They will also hear from astronomers Mayra Lebrón and Carmen Pantojas, the first Puerto Rican astronomer. Other speakers include Harry Valentín, assistant secretary educational services, Puerto Rico Department of Education, Pablo Haase, managing director Caribbean and Central America, Ford Motor Company, and national dance instructor Rafael Cancel of Cambio en Clave.
Ford Motor Company Fund, the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company, is working with ASPIRA Puerto Rico to launch the tour. The participating high schools include: Escuela Alternativa ASPIRA Aguada, Escuela Alternativa ASPIRA Mayagüez, Escuela Alternativa ASPIRA Carolina, and Escuela Francisco Oller Cataño. According to ASPIRA, students ages 14-17 are most at risk of dropping out of high school due to a combination of social and economic factors.
The Ford Driving Dreams Tour was designed by Ford Motor Company Fund. Launched in 2012, the program has reached more than 75,000 students in Chicago, Indiana, Florida, Texas, and last year expanded internationally to Panama. Ford Driving Dreams initiatives, including the Tour, have delivered more than $10 million in educational resources such as scholarships, college preparedness, tutoring programs, parental engagement, and motivational activities.
For the past six years, Ford Fund has invested more than $1.2 million in Puerto Rico. In addition to Ford Driving Dreams, Ford Fund educational programs include Ford Blue Oval Scholars, Ford Next Generation Learning, Ford College Community Challenge, and the Ford STEAM Lab.
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 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 Driving Dreams, Ford Next Generation Learning and other innovative 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 www.community.ford.com.