Leading Digital Strategists Transform Digital Marketing In Business and Academia

EntwineSyneCore

Executives, Educators and Students Learn the Value of Digital Strategies With a New, Easy-to-Understand Guidebook

BEDFORD, VA, October 17, 2014—Ira Kaufman, President of Entwine Digital and Chris Horton, Head of Content & Distribution for Synecore, have released an innovative Digital Marketing Guidebook drawing on the latest digital tactics and strategic insights to help organizations generate sustainable growth through digital integration. “Digital Marketing: Integrating Strategy and Tactics with Values,” (available digitally, of course) provides a roadmap to help executives, managers, educators and students adopt a digital mindset and incorporate the most effective, and quickly evolving digital tactics, (including social media and SEO tactics) strategically and competitively.

More than three-quarters of all executives say that digital initiatives are a priority for them, yet only a third of executives believe that their approach to digital is correct,” states Ira Kaufman, Co-Author of Digital Marketing Guidebook and President of Entwine Digital. “More than 65% have reported feeling unprepared to deal with the digital marketing explosion,” continues Kaufman. “To this point, industry and educators have been unable to train the estimated 1.5 million digital marketing managers needed in the U.S. by 2018. Currently, many employers attest that there aren’t enough qualified candidates to fill these positions today, let alone down the road.”

“Our goal with this guidebook,” states Chris Horton, co-author of Digital Marketing Guidebook and Head of Content & Distribution at Synecore, “is to create a primer on digital marketing that offers practical guidance to current business managers and executives, and relevant training to future business leaders by translating digital marketing concepts into real-world applications. To stay competitive in the digital age, individuals and organizations need to focus on the integration of digital technologies with marketing strategy and core values to achieve efficiency and long-term sustainability.”

The current business environment is changing dramatically with globalization and the effect of digital technologies; these same changes are impacting the college learning environment. Business education must adapt and transform to stay relevant. It must embrace innovative instructional methodologies and best practices for integrating digital technologies into the learning process to prepare students to succeed in an increasingly interconnected, global digital marketplace.

To accomplish these objectives, Kaufman and Horton developed the Digitally Integrated Learning Environment (DILE) to serve as a foundational instructional methodology for the Digital Marketing Guidebook. The DILE reflects a student-centric approach to pedagogy that requires the instructor first listen to and understand the needs and expectations of the students; based on the feedback received, the instructor designs a course that incorporates innovative projects and exercises with relevant, dynamic content that is delivered digitally.

“Modern marketing must be reconstituted to move into the digital age,” comments Dr. Philip Kotler, Professor of International Marketing, Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. “I applaud Kaufman and Horton’s effort to advance marketing. This book will prepare executives, managers, owners, and students to integrate digital marketing strategies and tactics with core values and business goals to achieve unprecedented levels of efficiency and innovation.”

Several emerging technologies are highlighted in Digital Marketing Guidebook, including Vusay (pronounced view-say), which is a powerful platform that makes online videos interactive with any device. Vusay is highlighted due to fact that today, more than 1 billion unique users watch more than 6 billion hours of videos a month on YouTube alone. Both Kaufman and Horton see Vusay’s point-in-time video commenting technology as a critical asset in the areas of education, training, entertainment and brand engagement, saying that digital marketers should take note and utilize its immersive commenting capabilities.

Digital Marketing: Integrating Strategy and Tactics with Values helps readers evaluate the most up-to-date digital channels and technologies to manage and leverage current and new business ventures. It provides grounding in digital vocabulary, a snapshot of how digital technologies impact strategy, and how to implement and measure widely available digital media tactics, which are evaluated in terms of industry best practices and their ability to achieve strategic goals. Finally, the Guidebook offers executives a step-by-step roadmap to transform their company into a Digitally Integrated Organization.

On par with its message, this interactive guidebook provides a truly Connected Digital Experience via augmented reality app Zappar, which allows readers to use their smartphone or tablet to activate “Discover More” and “Play Video” icons that connect the print publication to expanded and updated rich content housed on the book’s companion website, www.DigitalMarketingResourceCenter.com. Digital Marketing: Integrating Strategy and Tactics with Values is published by Routledge in print and digital and is available through Amazon.com.

About Ira Kaufman PhD
Ira Kaufman assists companies ranging from multinationals to start-ups with their social branding and integrated digital marketing and transformation strategies. Founded in 2001, Entwine Digital, his privately held company headquartered in Virginia, helps clients to tap into new and emerging digital opportunities by designing customer experiences and targeted digital media strategies that are values-driven and culturally sensitive, generating sustainable relationships with their target markets. Earning his PhD in marketing from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, he taught at the senior executive programs of Kellogg and Virginia Tech, and currently is designing innovative courses on digital marketing and social entrepreneurship at Lynchburg College School of Business and Economics

About Chris Horton
Chris Horton is a creative creator and digital strategist for Minneapolis-based integrated digital marketing agency, Synecore. Founded in 2011, Synecore is a privately held company headquartered in Minneapolis, MN that provides integrated digital marketing strategies and services and manages online and mobile engagement via social media, content creation, SEO, and email marketing. Chris has written hundreds of blogs and numerous ebooks on various topics related to digital marketing, including SEO, inbound, content, social, mobile, apps, digital branding and PR, Internet trends, and digital transformation.

CONTACTS:
Ira Kaufman: ira@entwinedigital.com; http://www.entwinedigital.com
Chris Horton: chris@synecoretech.com; http://www.synecoretech.com

USA NETWORK AND VERIZON CHARACTERS UNITE COLLEGE TOUR TO VISIT SEVEN CAMPUSES ACROSS THE COUNTRY, ENGAGING STUDENTS TO COMBAT DISCRIMINATION AND DATING ABUSE

USA Logo 

University of Maryland Wins the Characters Unite College Tour Competition,

Securing a Special Visit from a USA Network Star

NEW YORK, NY – October 16, 2014 – Verizon and USA Network today announced the seven stops on the Characters Unite College Tour. Beginning on Monday, October 20, the Tour will head across the country to encourage students to use technology and their voices to help solve some of the country’s biggest social issues, such hate and discrimination as well as dating abuse.

The University of Maryland was named the winner of the Characters Unite College Tour Competition. Launched in early September, the contest asked students to submit their college or university at charactersunitecollegetour.com for a chance to be part of the Tour. In addition to securing a spot on the Tour, the College Park, MD campus will get a special visit from a USA Network star.

The Characters Unite College Tour will make the following stops:

  • Columbus State Community College, Columbus, OH – Monday, October 20th
  • Howard University, Washington, DC – Wednesday, October 22nd
  • University of Maryland, College Park, MD – Thursday, October 23rd
  • Midlands Technical College, Columbia, SC – Tuesday, October 28th
  • Georgia Perimeter College, Clarkston, GA – Thursday, October 30th
  • University of Texas, Austin, TX – Thursday, November 6th
  • University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM – Wednesday, November 12th

At each stop of the Characters Unite College Tour, students will be invited to create a free “I Won’t Stand For…” t-shirt, personalizing it by stamping a word to fill in the blank, such as bullying, dating violence, racism, religious intolerance, sexism, homophobia, ableism and more. In addition, they can take a photo to be a part of the Characters Unite online gallery and immediately share the image with their friends and family via social media, joining millions of people – including top musicians, movie and television stars, athletes and political leaders – in the Characters Unite campaign to combat all forms of hate and discrimination.

In addition, students will have the opportunity to learn more about loveisrespect, a project of the National Domestic Violence hotline and Break the Cycle, a program, dedicated to empowering young adults to prevent and end abusive relationships, and join Verizon in speaking out against domestic violence through the company’s Hopeline® from Verizon program. Verizon is providing HopeLine collection bins on site for participants to donate no-longer-used wireless phones and accessories that will be used to support domestic violence organizations nationwide. Wireless phones donated to HopeLine are refurbished and provided to local domestic violence agencies to distribute to the victims of domestic violence they’re serving.  Students will also be invited to share messages of hope to domestic violence survivors through HopeLine’s Because Voices Have Power initiative using #VoicesHavePower.

To learn more about the Characters Unite College Tour, please visit charactersunitecollegetour.com. To learn more about HopeLine from Verizon, visit www.verizonwireless.com/hopeline or www.voiceshavepower.com.

About Characters Unite
Characters Unite, USA Network’s award-winning public service program, was created to address the social injustices and cultural divides still prevalent in our society. Inspired by USA Network’s iconic “Characters Welcome” brand and with the support of leading national nonprofit organizations, the ongoing campaign is dedicated to supporting activities and messaging that combat prejudice and intolerance while promoting understanding and acceptance — on-air, online, and in communities across the country. www.charactersunite.com

About USA Network
The #1 network in all of basic cable for an unprecedented seven straight years, USA Network is seen in over 102 million U.S. homes.  USA is a leader in scripted programming with a powerful stable of originals, spectacular live television and is home to the best in blockbuster theatrical films, a broad portfolio of acquired series and entertainment events.  A trailblazer in digital innovation and storytelling, USA is defining, driving and setting the industry standard for Social TV.  USA is a program service of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, a division of NBCUniversal. The award-winning website is located at http://www.usanetwork.com. Characters Welcome.

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USA Contact: 
Melissa Cusack
212.664.8993
melissa.cusack@nbcuni.com

Verizon Contact:
Ray McConville
908.559.3504
raymond.mcconville@verizon.com

Jessica Thorpe
908.559.6734
jessica.thorpe@verizonwireless.com

OH HONEY ARE “SINCERELY YOURS” WITH NEW EP // HONDA CIVIC TOUR

OH HONEY ARE “SINCERELY YOURS”;
BROOKLYN-BASED ALTERNATIVE-POP DUO UNVEIL NEW EP,
MARKING SECOND INSTALLMENT IN “THE POSTCARD SERIES”;

4-TRACK SET FOLLOWS ACCLAIMED DEBUT, “WITH LOVE,”
AND TOP 25 BREAKTHROUGH SINGLE, “BE OKAY”;

“THE HONDA CIVIC TOUR” ALONGSIDE AMERICAN AUTHORS
GETS UNDERWAY OCTOBER 21ST IN TALLAHASSEE;

SINCERELY YOURS” AVAILABLE TODAY – STREAM EP HERE!

Fueled By Ramen/Atlantic recording group Oh Honey has announced the release of a new EP. “SINCERELY YOURS” is available today on the iTunes Store and all leading DSPs.

“SINCERELY YOURS” marks the follow-up to Oh Honey’s debut EP, “WITH LOVE,” and the second of four EPs dubbed “The Postcard Series.” The EP is highlighted by the new single, “Don’t You Worry,” alongside three additional new songs from the Brooklyn-based alternative-pop duo. The next two installments in “The Postcard Series” – entitled “WISH YOU WERE HERE” and “UNTIL NEXT TIME” – are slated for release in early 2015. For updates, please visit ohhoneymusic.com.

Oh Honey will herald “SINCERELY YOURS” by appearing on the upcoming Honda Civic Tour, with select dates beginning October 21st at The Moon in Tallahassee, Florida and then continuing through mid-November (see attached itinerary). The tour – which sees Oh Honey performing alongside American Authors – continues the duo’s busy live schedule, a journey that has already seen them supporting such artists as The Fray and Atlantic’s own James Blunt. For complete details and ticket information, please visit ohhoneymusic.com/tour.

Oh Honey – a.k.a. singer/songwriter/musician Mitchy Collins and singer/songwriter/actress Danielle Bouchard – first came together in 2013 and immediately captured attention with their melodic, organic songcraft and beautifully blended harmony vocals. The duo performed regularly – including well-received showcases at both CMJ and South By Southwest (SXSW) – before releasing “WITH LOVE,” the first EP in “The Postcard Series,” in November 2013. Signed by Atlantic in February 2014, Oh Honey made a major splash with their breakthrough single, “Be Okay.” The track – featured on the “WITH LOVE” EP – proved a top 25 smash at Hot AC outlets nationwide and has since been featured in a wide range of TV series, films, and other campaigns, including Fox’s Glee and Red Band Society, ABC’s Selfie, DreamWorks’ The Hundred Foot Journey, and recent commercials for Google Android and Chili’s Bar & Grill.

For more, please visit ohhoneymusic.comwww.twitter.com/ohhoneymusicwww.facebook.com/ohhoneymusic, and www.atlanticrecords.com.

OH HONEY
ON TOUR 2014
All Dates: THE HONDA CIVIC TOUR w/American Authors

OCTOBER
21 Tallahassee, FL The Moon
22 Orlando, FL The Beacham
23 Fort Lauderdale, FL Revolution Live
24 St. Petersburg, FL Jannus Live
25 Atlanta, GA Buckhead Theatre
27 Indianapolis, IN Deluxe at Old National Centre
28 Pontiac, MI The Crofoot
29 Chicago, IL Metro
31 Minneapolis, MN Mill City Nights

NOVEMBER
2 Columbus, OH Newport Music Hall
4 Boston, MA Paradise Rock Club
6 Pittsburgh, PA Stage AE
7 New York, NY Best Buy Theater
8 Philadelphia, PA Trocadero
10 Washington, DC 9:30 Club
11 New Haven, CT Toad’s Place

ohhoneymusic.com/tour

# # #

Contact:
Christina Kotsamanidis (National)
Christina.kosamanidis@atlanticrecords.com

Amy Laudicano (Tour/Online)
Amy.Laudicano@atlanticrecords.com

Mercedes-Benz Financial Services wants you to help “Drive Our Future”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich. – Mercedes-Benz Financial Services is pleased to announce the “Drive Our Future” contest, aimed at gathering innovative ideas from the public about what the vehicle financing experience of the future should look like. Ideas can be submitted in written form or by uploading a video through November 17, 2014. Additional details about the contest, official rules and how to enter can be found at: http://mbusa.us/DriveOurFuture/.

“Mercedes-Benz Financial Services helps put people in the driver’s seat of Mercedes-Benz, Sprinter and smart vehicles every day,” noted Geoff Robinson, Vice President of Marketing for Mercedes-Benz Financial Services. “But to get behind the wheel of the vehicle of their dreams a future owner has to go through the buying, leasing or financing process. If leasing or financing is the best option, we hope they will choose to do that with us. That’s why it’s our goal to make working with us as simple and efficient as possible, and a great experience.”

A great idea has the potential to win one of three prizes:

- First prize: Mercedes-Benz CLA 24-month Single Pay Lease (value $9,100)
- Second prize: Mercedes-Benz CLA 13-month Single Pay Lease (value $6,300)
- Third prize: Mercedes-Benz Prepaid Visa Card (value $3,000)
The company is looking for the next big idea in one of the following three categories:

- Digital Customer Contact: What should digital customer interactions (e.g. personalized/tailored online finance offers, electronic documents/signatures, electronic communications, etc.) and mobility (e.g. connected car, mobile device coverage, etc.) look like by 2020?

- Dealer Finance Experience: Once the perfect vehicle is selected, what would the ideal financing experience look like?

- Future Services: Mercedes-Benz Financial Services currently offers its customers financial, mobility and insurance services. What other services could the company provide customers to enhance their experiences in the future?

“We are dedicated to creating the best experience for our customers in everything we do,” added Robinson. “It is our goal to be the first-choice provider of financial and mobility services, and we know that in order to exceed our current or future customers’ expectations we have to listen and learn from them. We are excited to do that through this unique contest.”

About Mercedes-Benz Financial Services USA LLC
Mercedes‐Benz Financial Services USA LLC, headquartered in Farmington Hills, Mich., with Business Center Operations in Fort Worth, Texas, provides brand‐specific financial products and services for Mercedes‐Benz and smart automotive dealers and their retail customers. In the U.S. trucking industry, it conducts business as Daimler Truck Financial and provides flexible financial products and services for Daimler Trucks North America commercial vehicles branded Freightliner, Western Star, Thomas‐Built Bus and Mitsubishi Fuso Truck of America, Inc. Mercedes‐Benz Financial Services USA LLC serves as the headquarters for operations in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Argentina and Brazil, and has approximately 1,700 employees throughout the Americas. It is a company of the Daimler Financial Services Group, headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany, which does business in 40 countries and has an employee base of more than 8,000 people worldwide. Daimler Financial Services is o ne of the leading financial services organizations worldwide. For more information, please visit www.mbfs.com/corp or facebook.com/mymbfs.

Media Contact (Note to Editors: Promotional images available upon request)
Melinda Mernovage
Mercedes-Benz Financial Services
(248) 595-1460
melinda.mernovage@daimler.com

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Bring Snoop Dogg to Your College Campus

Crowdfunding Site Tilt Launches “Tilt for Snoop” Competition 

tiltforsnoop_1200x628

San Francisco, CA – October 9, 2014 – Tilt, the easiest, most flexible way to collect, fundraise or pool money with your group, today announced the nationwide launch of the “Tilt for Snoop” competition. Snoop Dogg, who’s a friend and user of Tilt, will be coming to the college campus with the most tilted campaigns between October and December 31.

Tilt helps groups collect money for partiestailgatesduesco-ed sports teamsphilanthropies, and everything in between for FREE! Once you decide on what to collect money for, set a “Tilt amount”—the minimum amount needed in order to make it happen. It’s risk-free, no one gets charged unless that amount is reached.

Any student at an accredited undergraduate institution within the 48 continental U.S. is eligible to enter. The rules are simple. Schools will earn Tilt Points by the following:

  • Each mobile download = 10 points
  • Each Tilt contributor = 20 points
  • A successful Tilt = 50 points

The school with the most Tilt Points by December 31st will win a DJ set with Snoop near their campus before the end of the 2014-2015 school year. (See our official rules and regulations).

To keep track of how each school is doing, we have set up a dynamic leaderboard that displays the total points accumulated by each school. To be eligible for the leaderboard and to be included in the display, each school must have at least 100 contributors from their campus.

If your school has a Tilt ambassador on campus, they will be giving out “Scratcher Cards” to with promo codes specific to your school, so seek them out!

For more info on Tilt and the competition, check out the “Tilt for Snoop” website.

Media Contact:
Natassia Costa
Natassia@tilt.com
925-550-0790

Campus Stores to Celebrate Fourth Annual National Student Day

NACS Logo

College and high school students’ volunteerism recognized by campuses across U.S. and Canada

OBERLIN, OHIO, October 1, 2014 – Nearly 2,000 college and high school campus stores across North America will be celebrating the fourth annual National Student Day on Thursday, October 9. Sponsored by the National Association of College Stores (NACS), National Student Day is all about recognizing, celebrating and promoting students’ social responsibility.

American and Canadian stores will hold special events ranging from flash sales and free food to contests, games and live music. Some stores will also involve local charitable organizations or businesses in volunteer fairs or food or supply drives. Cape Fear Community College, located in Wilmington, N.C., for example, is co-sponsoring a “Keep Warm, Stay Warm,” coat drive with local television station WECT-TV.

Other stores, such as Valencia College in California, are working with national charity Move For Hunger on a campuswide food drive to benefit local families. Move For Hunger works with relocation companies across North America to pick up unwanted, unopened food from those who are relocating and deliver it to local food banks. At the conclusion of the food drives, five local moving companies will pick up the donations and deliver them to local food banks.

This year, NACS is sponsoring an all-new photo-sharing contest for National Student Day. From now until Oct. 23, students can post photos of themselves doing volunteer work or a random act of kindness to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #NSDvolunteer to be entered to win a $1,000 prize and a $1,000 donation to the 501 (c)(3) charity of their choice.

National Student Day is supported by Sidewalk, a leading provider of technologically-enhanced rental solutions to the college store market. For more information on National Student Day and the contest, visit www.nationalstudentday.com or find it on Facebook and Twitter.

About the National Association of College Stores:
Headquartered in Oberlin, Ohio, the National Association of College Stores (NACS) is the professional trade association representing the $10 billion collegiate retailing industry. NACS represents nearly 3,000 collegiate retailers and approximately 1,000 associate members who supply books and other products to college stores. NACS member stores serve America’s college students while supporting the academic missions of higher education institutions everywhere. Additional information on NACS can be found online at www.nacs.org.

Contact:
Laura Massie
National Association of College Stores
(800) 622-7498 ext. 2351
lmassie@nacs.org

Over 2,000 Groups Prepare to “Hit the Streets” with Volunteers and Celebrities for National Voter Registration Day on September 23, 2014

National Voter Registration Day 2014 is set to be the biggest yet, surpassing the total number of partners in 2012 and 2013.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Over 2,000 groups in all 50 states have joined forces to celebrate National Voter Registration Day, the largest single-day effort of the year to register voters and involve them in the American political process. Now in its third year, more than 350,000 voters have registered on National Voter Registration Day through field and online efforts by thousands of partners and supporters.

The effort will bring together businesses, non-profits, volunteer organizations, and celebrity supporters for a coordinated day of national civic action. National Voter Registration Day organizers will host events all over the country, publish and promote online materials, and organize volunteers on and around September 23rd.

In 2014, this national day of civic action once again boasts the support and recognition of the National Association of Secretaries of State, which passed a five-year resolution proclaiming the fourth Tuesday of September as National Voter Registration Day. This year’s National Voter Registration Day is particularly important as Americans will vote in national and statewide elections. Ballots will include contests for 471 congressional seats, 36 governorships, the makeup of 46 state legislatures, and thousands of local elections that will impact families at home, including their communities, cities, school systems, local parks, and much more.

WHAT WILL HAPPEN:
• Celebrities will register voters and generate buzz at surprise locations.
• Volunteers will register eligible voters across the country with marquee events taking place in New York City; Miami; Los Angeles; Chicago; San Antonio, TX; Portland, OR; Denver, CO; and Boone, NC.
• Technology will be leveraged to help eligible voters find local voter registration events and to register to vote online.
• Like previous years, the day’s official hashtag—#CelebrateNVRD—will trend nationally and reach millions of Americans.
• A network of grassroots and local organizations will engage potential voters in their local communities.
• Hundreds of thousands of voters will be registering to vote online and in their communities in a single day.

A recently re-launched website, including a mobile-friendly version, will make it easier than ever to get involved by registering to vote and volunteering at hundreds of events across the nation. The new site features resources for partners to plan and promote their voter registration events on September 23rd with field planning and communications toolkits, posters, social media graphics, and much more.

Some partners include National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS), Voto Latino, Rock the Vote, Tumblr, League of Women Voters, YWCA, APALA, HeadCount and others.

To learn more about National Voter Registration Day, visit www.NationalVoterRegistrationDay.org. Follow the conversation on social media via the hashtag #CelebrateNVRD, on Facebook at facebook.com/CelebrateNVRD, on Twitter at twitter.com/CelebrateNVRD, and on Instagram at instagram.com/CelebrateNVRD.

About National Voter Registration Day
National Voter Registration Day is a one-day effort of coordinated field, technology, and media initiatives to create pervasive awareness of voter registration and voting. Led by thousands of national, state, and local organizations and their volunteers, National Voter Registration Day is to civic engagement what Earth Day is to environmental awareness. National Voter Registration Day, which started in 2012, is held every fourth Tuesday in September—before voter registration deadlines nationwide—and is designed to remind and encourage eligible Americans to prepare to exercise their most basic civil right, their right to vote.

Peace Corps Director Calls on College Students to Make a Difference After Graduation Through International Service

PeaceCorp

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: 202.692.2230 or pressoffice@peacecorps.gov

Peace Corps Director Calls on College Students to Make a Difference After Graduation Through International Service
Urges College Seniors to Take Advantage of New, Shorter
Application Process and Apply by September 30

WASHINGTON, D.C., September 19, 2014 – As many college seniors are thinking about life after graduation, Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet today called on students to consider making a difference through international service in one of the agency’s more than 60 countries around the world. As part of her call to service, Hessler-Radelet also urged college seniors to take advantage of the agency’s new, shorter application process and apply to become a Peace Corps volunteer before September 30.

“With our new, shorter application process, we’re seeing record numbers of Americans apply for Peace Corps service,” Hessler-Radelet said. “While the school year may have just begun, I want to make sure college seniors considering the Peace Corps apply as soon as possible so they can secure the volunteer position of their choice and leave for service shortly after graduation.”

In July, Hessler-Radelet announced sweeping changes to the agency’s application process that have made applying to the Peace Corps simpler, faster and more personalized than ever before. Under the new recruitment initiative, applicants can now choose their country of service and apply to specific programs through a new, shorter application that can be completed in less than one hour.

The key recruitment reforms include:

• Peace Corps applicants can now choose the programs and countries they want to apply to – selecting the path that best fits their personal and professional goals. Applicants can apply to between one and three specific programs at a time, or they can choose to apply for service wherever they are needed most. The Peace Corps website now lists all open programs (http://www.peacecorps.gov/openings/) by country, work area and departure date, so applicants can browse service opportunities.

• A new, shorter application is now available on the Peace Corps website that can be completed in less than one hour. What used to be more than 60 printed pages that took more than eight hours to complete is now a short online application that focuses solely but rigorously on the most relevant information to help the agency select the best candidates.

• Each open Peace Corps position now has clearly identified Apply By and Know By deadlines, so applicants know when they can expect to receive an invitation to serve. If they apply on time, they’ll know if they were selected on time – just like applying to college or a job. These deadlines give applicants more certainty than ever and help them plan for the future.

Click here (http://files.peacecorps.gov/openings/PC_Process_infographic.pdf) to view an infographic on Peace Corps’ new application and selection process.

“There is no better and more important time to apply to serve with the Peace Corps and make a difference,” Hessler-Radelet said. “Peace Corps’ work – helping to reduce poverty, fostering economic growth, and building relationships in some of the most vulnerable communities across the globe – has never before been more important.”

Hessler-Radelet, who was sworn in as the agency’s 19th director in June and comes from a four-generation Peace Corps family, has led one of the most extensive reform efforts the agency has ever undertaken since she joined the agency in 2010. In addition to the recruitment reforms announced this summer, the Peace Corps has dramatically improved the quality of support it provides to volunteers, strategically targeted its resources and country presence to maximize impact, and streamlined operations to create a culture of innovation and excellence.

About the Peace Corps: As the preeminent international service organization of the United States, the Peace Corps sends Americans abroad to tackle the most pressing needs of people around the world. Peace Corps volunteers work at the grassroots level with local governments, schools, communities, small businesses and entrepreneurs to develop sustainable solutions that address challenges in education, health, economic development, agriculture, environment and youth development. When they return home, volunteers bring their knowledge and experiences – and a global outlook – back to the United States that enriches the lives of those around them. President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps in 1961 to foster a better understanding among Americans and people of other countries. Since then, more than 215,000 Americans of all ages have served in 139 countries worldwide. Visit www.peacecorps.gov to learn more.

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USA NETWORK AND VERIZON LAUNCH THE “CHARACTERS UNITE COLLEGE TOUR” COMPETITION FOR STUDENTS TO BRING A USA NETWORK CELEBRITY AND A WORTHY CAUSE TO THEIR CAMPUS

This Fall, Characters Unite College Tour Will Stop at Seven Campuses Around the Country with Special Activation to Engage Students to Stop Problems of Discrimination and Dating Abuse

College or University with the Most Entries Ensured a Stop on the Tour and a Visit From a Star of One of USA Network’s Hit Series

NEW YORK, NY – September 17, 2014 – Verizon and USA Network are teaming for the Characters Unite College Tour to encourage students to use technology and their voices to help solve some of the country’s biggest social issues, such as stopping hate and discrimination and preventing dating abuse. USA and Verizon today launched a national contest – the “Characters Unite College Tour Competition” – for colleges and universities to win the opportunity to become one of the seven campuses visited on the tour this fall.

From September 3 through September 26, all college and university students can enter the competition at charactersunitecollegetour.com. Once students have entered the contest, they can encourage their friends to enter by promoting the tour on Facebook and Twitter. For every friend they get to enter, their school receives a bonus referral vote. The school with the highest number of entries will be guaranteed a stop on the fall tour and get a very special guest – one of the stars from a USA Network hit series.

“Verizon’s culture of diversity and inclusion is the core of who we are as a company and allows our employees to unleash their full talent and potential,” said Michelle Watts, director of workforce performance, at Verizon. “We’re proud to join the Characters Unite College Tour to help engage the brightest minds of tomorrow in creating a more open and respectful society, and make a positive difference in the world.”

“The Characters Unite College Tour and Competition represents our continued effort to inspire students to speak out against hate, abuse and discrimination,” said Toby Graff, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs, USA Network. “We are proud to partner with Verizon and their HopeLine campaign to encourage today’s students, our future leaders, to become champions of change at their schools and in their communities.”

At each stop of the Characters Unite College Tour, students will be invited to create a free “I Won’t Stand For…” t-shirt, personalizing it by stamping a word to fill in the blank, such as bullying, dating abuse, racism, religious intolerance, sexism, homophobia, ableism and more. In addition, they can take a photo to be a part of the Characters Unite online gallery and immediately share the image with their friends and family via social media, joining millions of people – including top musicians, movie and television stars, athletes and political leaders – in the Characters Unite campaign to combat all forms of violence and discrimination.

In addition, students will have the opportunity to learn more about loveisrespect, a program dedicated to empowering youth and young adults to prevent and end abusive relationships. Students will also be able to join Verizon in speaking out against dating violence through the company’s HopeLine program. The activation will include HopeLine Collection bins where guests can donate no-longer-used wireless phones and accessories in any condition, from any service provider. Donated phones are recycled or refurbished and turned into support in the form of cash grants for local and national domestic violence prevention organizations across the country. Through HopeLine, Verizon also provides wireless phones to local domestic violence prevention organizations across the country for use by their clients. In addition, students will be invited to share messages of hope to domestic violence survivors through HopeLine’s Because Voices Have Power initiative.

To enter the contest, view the rules and regulations and learn more about the Characters Unite College Tour Competition, please visit charactersunitecollegetour.com. To learn more about HopeLine from Verizon, visit www.verizonwireless.com/hopeline or www.voiceshavepower.com.

About Characters Unite
Characters Unite, USA Network’s award-winning public service program, was created to address the social injustices and cultural divides still prevalent in our society. Inspired by USA Network’s iconic “Characters Welcome” brand and with the support of leading national nonprofit organizations, the ongoing campaign is dedicated to supporting activities and messaging that combat prejudice and intolerance while promoting understanding and acceptance — on-air, online, and in communities across the country. www.charactersunite.com

About USA Network
The #1 network in all of basic cable for an unprecedented seven straight years, USA Network is seen in over 102 million U.S. homes. USA is a leader in scripted programming with a powerful stable of originals, spectacular live television and is home to the best in blockbuster theatrical films, a broad portfolio of acquired series and entertainment events. A trailblazer in digital innovation and storytelling, USA is defining, driving and setting the industry standard for Social TV. USA is a program service of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, a division of NBCUniversal. The award-winning website is located at http://www.usanetwork.com. Characters Welcome.

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USA Contact:
Melissa Cusack | 212.664.8993 | melissa.cusack@nbcuni.com

Verizon Contact:
Ray McConville | 908.559.3504 | raymond.mcconville@verizon.com
Cameka Crawford | 908.559.3497 | cameka.crawford@verizonwireless.com

WHEN GEORGIA SMILED: THE ROBIN MCGRAW REVELATION FOUNDATION TEAMS WITH PIVOT AND STUDENTS OF THE WORLD TO LAUNCH THE #iASPIRE GRANT CONTEST

Students are invited to apply for up to $5,000 in funding to support their efforts to address sexual violence, which includes issues of campus sexual assault, relationship abuse, and harassment.

(Los Angeles, CA – September 16, 2014) – When Georgia Smiled: The Robin McGraw Revelation Foundation has teamed with Participant Media’s television network, Pivot and Students of the World to launch the #iAspire Grant Contest to raise awareness of the issue of sexual violence on university campuses across the country, and highlight student initiatives to prevent issues such as sexual assault, abuse, and harassment.

Participating students can apply for anywhere from $500 to $5,000 in funding. Applicants are asked to share not only the work they are doing on their campus and in their community, but also to share their vision for how they would use the funding.

“Statistics show that one in five women will experience sexual assault during her college experience,” notes McGraw. “I think that is unacceptable. I want to amplify the great work students are doing on college campuses to make a difference and raise awareness of how people can protect themselves and be a part of the solution around sexual violence.”

“We are so pleased to be working with Robin McGraw and her foundation, When Georgia Smiled, to support the people and programs looking to solve this serious issue,” said John Arianas, EVP Branded Solutions for Pivot.

Through October 15th, students can apply through the Studentsoftheworld.org/iaspire for $500 to $5,000 in funding to support their visions for programs, resources, and educational components addressing issues of sexual violence. Of the winners selected, Robin McGraw will select one student to be invited to attend a taping of the DR. PHIL show that will feature his or her initiative.

In addition to applying for a grant, students are encouraged to download Aspire News, a free smartphone app, available in the iTunes stores and at www.whengeorgiasmiled.org, that allows the user to create pre-written text or voice messages to be sent to designated numbers (911 or other chosen contacts) with just the tap of a button. The ignition of the app’s “go button” also starts a recording to capture the details of the domestic violence encounter or other dangerous event underway. Aspire News is designed to appear like any other smart phone app to the untrained eye, allowing it to be downloaded and used in secret. Launched by When Georgia Smiled in October 2013, the Aspire News app has already had more than 80,000 downloads and was recognized on Capitol Hill by the National Health Collaborative on Violence and Abuse as one of the two apps in 2014 most beneficial in the fight to end domestic violence.

The #iAspire Grant Contest is made possible with support from When Georgia Smiled: The Robin McGraw Revelation Foundation. For further information, and to apply for a grant, visit http://www.studentsoftheworld.org/iaspire/ or WhenGeorgiaSmiled.org.

About When Georgia Smiled
When Georgia Smiled: The Robin McGraw Revelation Foundation, creates and advances programs that help women and children, especially those affected by domestic violence, live healthy, safe and joy-filled lives. For more information, visit www.WhenGeorgiaSmiled.org.

About Pivot
Participant Media’s television network Pivot (http://www.Pivot.tv), launched nationally in August 2013, serves passionate Millennials (18-34) with a diverse slate of talent and a mix of original series, acquired programming, films and documentaries. Pivot focuses on entertainment that sparks conversation, inspires change and illuminates issues through engaging content, and connects audiences to a wealth of content and actions through its affiliated website TakePart (http://www.TakePart.com). Pivot is available in approximately 45 million homes in North America via traditional pay TV subscription, integrating a live and on-demand streaming option via the Pivot app. Follow Pivot on Twitter at @pivot_tv and on Facebook at facebook.com/pivottelevision.

Participant Media (http://www.ParticipantMedia.com) is a global entertainment company founded in 2004 by Jeff Skoll to focus on feature film, television, publishing, and digital content that inspires social change. Through its films, social action campaigns, digital network, and its television network, Participant seeks to entertain, encourage and empower every individual to take action.

Students of the World (SOW)
Students of the World is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that works with a national network of university students and creative professionals to produce media that inspires positive social action. We believe in the creative capacity of our generation, the transformative power of storytelling, and the value of highlighting positive change.