Monthly Archives: September 2015


Dannon Logo 2015



White Plains, NY – September 15, 2015 – Now, you can help Dannon in their on-going efforts to help SACK HUNGER! Based on their core values to promote wellness through food, Dannon is proud to launch a new initiative to help end hunger in the USA. The new program will feature a text-to-feed sweepstakes challenge where Dannon will donate the value of 50 meals per text message to Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger relief organization.

Hunger hits closer to home than most people realize. In the USA, one in six people struggle with hunger.1 It is time to change this. With your help, Dannon aims to donate at least 750,000 meals2 to Feeding America and its nationwide network of food banks.

Beginning today, when you text “MEALS” to 80077, you will be entered into a sweepstakes3 for a chance to win NFL related prizes, including one Grand Prize of a trip to Super Bowl 50 courtesy of Dannon. At the same time this entry will trigger a donation from Dannon of $5 to Feeding America.4 You also have the option to match Dannon’s donation to your local Feeding America food bank via text. Be sure to keep an eye out for branded table tents, posters and videos in your campus dining hall to find more details for the SACK HUNGER program.

“We created the SACK HUNGER Challenge in connection with our NFL sponsorship and Feeding America to advance our mission to bring health through food to the greatest number of people,” said Greg Milton, Dannon’s Foodservice Director who is leading the initiative for Dannon. “Many Americans understand that we have a major obesity problem in the USA, however, fewer understand that we have an equally alarming hunger problem where 1 in 6 people, including nearly 16 million children, struggle with hunger. They are flipsides of the same coin and we’re passionate about both. Therefore, we are working with Feeding America to educate Americans about the benefits of eating yogurt every day as part of a healthy and balanced lifestyle, as well as doing what we can to provide access to nutritious foods to families across the U.S. struggling with hunger.”

“Feeding America is thrilled to work with partners like Dannon who not only support our nationwide network through creative donation programs, but also help us provide our clients with healthful food options,” said Nancy Curby, vice president of corporate partnerships for Feeding America. “With their commitment, we are able to better serve the 46 million Americans facing hunger who turn to us each year.”

Dannon is striving to exceed its stated commitment and has set an internal goal to raise 1 million meals (equivalent to $100,000) for Feeding America. This is in addition to the more than 8 million pounds of Dannon products the company already donated in 2014 to Feeding America for the benefit of food insecure Americans nationwide.

Dannon has also empowered their employees to SACK HUNGER through a volunteerism and donation campaign. Dannon employees (known as Danoners) across the USA are supporting Dannon’s goal to donate 1 million meals to Feeding America. From supporting local food banks to providing monetary donations directly to Feeding America, Danoners are doing what they can to make a difference.

Dannon kicked off SACK HUNGER internally on July 30 by gathering 400 Danoners for an event at the Sports Authority Field at Mile High Stadium to fight hunger for Food Bank of the Rockies and Feeding America. They competed in a variety of football themed games and participated in a silent auction, surpassing the evening’s goal to donate at least $10,000 to Food Bank of the Rockies. This level of enthusiasm and passion has been witnessed at hands-on meal-packing events already held at Dannon offices and plants in Ohio, Oregon, Texas, and Utah. Above and beyond the 1 million meal goal, Danoners have already packed over 200,000 nutritious meals for their local community food bank with still more events scheduled to come for team members in New Hampshire, New York and Connecticut and remote sales offices.

Since Dannon started working with Feeding America in 2000, the company has already donated more than 53 million pounds of its nutrient dense foods that are in particularly high demand at food banks. SACK HUNGER was chosen as the name to share Dannon’s passion for ending hunger in the spirit of the company’s status as the official yogurt of the NFL.

It’s time to make a difference! Are you ready to help us SACK HUNGER?

For more sweepstakes information and prize details, visit

1 Feeding America®
2 $1 helps provide 10 meals secured by Feeding America® on behalf of member food banks.
3 When you enter via text, you will receive the following text replies: (1) a text asking for your email address to confirm your entry; (2) a reply text confirming your entry and presenting an opportunity for you to donate $5 to Feeding America via text; (3) if you choose to donate, you will receive a reply text confirming your donation; (4) if you reply YES, you will receive a donation confirmation message. If your text does not comply with submission requirements, you will receive an error text. MESSAGE AND DATA RATES MAY APPLY. †NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. A purchase will not improve your chances of winning. Open to legal residents of the 48 contiguous U.S. and D.C., age 18 or older. Starts on 9/7/15 at 12:00:01 AM ET and ends on 11/30/15 at 11:59:59 PM ET. Void in AK, HI, outside the U.S. and where prohibited. For Official Rules, complete details and how to enter without sending a text message, visit Limit: One (1) entry per perso n per week regardless of means of entry. Sponsor: The Dannon Company, Inc., 100 Hillside Avenue, White Plains, NY 10603. The NFL entities (as defined in the Official Rules) have not offered or sponsored this sweepstakes in any way. Contest rules prohibit Danone employees from participating.
4 Minimum donation of $20,000 and up to a maximum of $50,000

CounterCard 2015

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About Dannon
Headquartered in White Plains, New York, Dannon makes yogurt in Minster, OH, Fort Worth, TX, West Jordan, UT, and Portland, OR, and offers more than 200 different flavors, styles and sizes of cultured refrigerated and frozen dairy products to serve the diverse needs of its retail and foodservice customers. Dannon brings health through food to as many people as possible via its wide offering of delicious and wholesome fresh and frozen yogurts. Dannon is a subsidiary of Danone, and Dannon is the top-selling brand of yogurt worldwide, sold under the names Dannon and Danone. For more information, visit

About Feeding America
Feeding America is the nationwide network of 200 food banks that leads the fight against hunger in the United States. Together, we provide food to more than 46 million people through 60,000 food pantries and meal programs in communities across America. Feeding America also supports programs that improve food security among the people we serve; educates the public about the problem of hunger; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Individuals, charities, businesses and government all have a role in ending hunger. Donate. Volunteer. Advocate. Educate. Together we can solve hunger. Visit, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.

Jessica Butera, The Food Group, 212.329.6273,, or,
Michael Neuwirth, Dannon, 914.872.8708,


Skout Reveals the Top 10 Friendliest College Towns in America

Skout Logo

Skout Reveals the Top 10 Friendliest College Towns in America

San Francisco, Calif. – September 14, 2015 – This month thousands of college students across the country headed back to campus. Skout, the leading global app that helps you meet new people and expand your social circle, recently reviewed 12 months of data among 18-24 year olds using its app to uncover the country’s friendliest college towns. Skout looked at college towns across the U.S. to uncover the cities where young adults engage most frequently with new friends through its app.

Top 10 Friendliest College Towns in America:

1. Madison, Wisconsin
2. Los Angeles, California
3. New York City
4. Ann Arbor, Michigan
5. Chicago, Illinois
6. San Francisco, California
7. Boulder, Colorado
8. Phoenix, Arizona
9. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
10. Dallas, Texas

Skout’s data also reveals:
• Boston, known as America’s college town with over 100 colleges and universities within its metro area, came in at #12 on Skout’s Friendliest College Towns list.
• The friendliest college-age guys in America are in Boulder, Colorado, while the friendliest college-age women are in Madison, Wisconsin.
• The most generous college-age adults in the U.S. are in Los Angeles. Young adults using Skout in LA share more virtual gifts with friends than all the college-age adults in Boston, Miami, Chicago and Dallas combined.

“It’s always fun to look at what the data from our community reveals,” said Christian Wiklund, co-founder and CEO of Skout. “Hats off to all the Skouters in Madison, Wisconsin for helping it top the list as the friendliest college town in the U.S.”

Skout also recently conducted a survey among more than 2,500 people who use its app across the U.S. Of the Skouters who are college students between the ages of 18-24, the survey found that:

Goodbye high school. Making friends is easier in college.
• 57% of college students say that it is easier to make friends in college than it is in high school.
• However, 59% of college students said they were worried about making new friends during freshman year.
• 72% of college students say they met good friends within a week of being on campus.

Best place to meet a new friend in college? In the classroom!
• 75% of college students say they met their new friends in the classroom.
• 42% of college students say they met their new friends at parties.
• 39% of college students say they met their new friends during orientation.
• 34% of college students say they met their new friends online!
• Other great places to meet new friends include: the dorm (36%), cafeteria (35%), sports teams (28%), and the library (27%).

Roommates make good friends.
• 73% of college students say they consider their roommate a friend.

Coeds are friendlier than male students.
• 61% of college students say women are friendlier than men on campus.

Cliques don’t apply. Most college students arrive at school not knowing anyone.
• Only one third (37%) of students started college with an existing friend or acquaintance.

This survey was conducted online in August 2015 among 2,523 Skout users in the United States. To view an infographic with these findings, visit the Skout blog at

To download Skout for iOS or Android, or to sign up online, visit You can also find Skout on Facebook and Twitter.

About Skout
Skout is the leading global app for meeting new people and expanding your social circle. The Skout community spans more than 180 countries, is available in 14 languages and can be downloaded on iOS, Android and Windows devices. The Andreessen Horowitz backed company was founded in 2007 and is headquartered in San Francisco. Visit to learn more.

Skout Friendliest College Towns Infographic

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Media Contact
Katy Gaenicke
(781) 585-1717



Students Can Now Earn College Credit and Spend a Semester Learning 21st Century Digital Skills in Tech Capitals Around the Globe from Silicon Valley to London to Sydney

NEW YORK, September 10, 2015 – General Assembly (GA), the global educational institution building a community of entrepreneurs and professionals through instruction and opportunity in technology, business and design, is now offering study abroad semester and intersession programs for undergraduates to earn college credits. General Assembly is now accepting applications for both their 10-day Tech Intensive Program and the 16-week Tech Semester Programs. General Assembly has 14 campuses around the globe and will be bringing its Tech Semester and Intensive Programs to all its international cities including London, Singapore, Sydney, Melbourne, and Hong Kong, over the next year.

The two new study abroad programs now available to undergraduates are a 16-week semester program, and a 10-day January term program. The 16-week program is a 15-credit program featuring 10-weeks of learning top skills desired by employers like digital marketing, user experience design, front-end web development, and product management, followed by a six-week internship at a tech company or startup. In the 10-day program, students begin with an idea of something they would like to create, and then spend one week in crash courses to learn a variety of technical topics including product management, ux, business strategy, and more. At the end of the program, students pitch their product prototype to a panel of industry experts for feedback. Both programs feature cultural and industry immersion including industry excursions where students will hear from designers, developers, business managers, and recent grads about their experience utilizing technical skills at work.

“At General Assembly we believe the future of study abroad are experiences that feature both cultural and industry immersion,” said Mercedes Bent, general manager of university programs & partnership at General Assembly. “We’re combining the best of both worlds – career and cultural exploration. The same curiosity that drives us to explore other cultures drives us to find meaning and passion in our work. GA’s mission is to help students pursue work they love.”

“I was unsure I wanted to stick with my major. I had always wanted to travel to Sydney, so when I saw that GA had a campus there I jumped at taking a program. After just a few weeks in the program, I was able to build a product that does something. I’m heading back to Georgetown in the fall (for Junior year) I am going to keep the Government major and add a Computer Science minor,” said Matthew Thees, a current senior at Georgetown who took a semester away from Georgetown to study with General Assembly.

Study abroad has traditionally focused on providing students with the opportunity to learn foreign languages and experience the culture of another nation. Over the past few years, students have increasingly seen studying abroad as an opportunity to learn more pre-professional skills. According to Open Door Data, STEM students studying abroad recently grew by 9% in one year.

General Assembly’s move to infuse study abroad with career-building skills and industry immersion comes as a welcome time in light of employment prospects for college graduates. In a January 2014 report the Federal Reserve found that roughly 44 percent of recent graduates—meaning those ages 22 to 27 with a B.A. or higher—were in a job that did not technically demand a bachelor’s degree. Furthermore, 16.8% of recent college grads are underemployed – working part-time jobs to make ends meet. Grads that are lucky enough to land good jobs will make an average of $45,000. On the other hand, jobs that require skills learned in General Assembly’s tech semester program like front-end web development and user experience design, pay an average of $60,000 for entry level positions.


About General Assembly
General Assembly is a global educational institution that is building a community of individuals empowered to pursue work they love through instruction and opportunity in technology, design, and business. General Assembly offers full-time immersive programs, classes, workshops, and online educational programming on the most relevant skills of the 21st century economy, including web development, user experience design, product management, digital marketing, and data science. Headquartered in New York, General Assembly was established in early 2011 and has 14 campuses worldwide in Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Hong Kong, London, Los Angeles, Melbourne, New York, San Francisco, Singapore, Seattle, Sydney, and Washington D.C.

Contact Information
For General Assembly
Mercedes Bent

All Study Strategies Are Not Equal: Save time by studying smarter

Do you know what strategy works the BEST?

By Christine Harrington Ph.D.

Have you ever studied for an exam only to be disappointed with your grade?  If you answered yes to this question, you are not alone.  Students often spend countless hours studying yet do not perform well on exams.  This is most likely due to the study strategies they are using.  Research shows that some study strategies are more effective than others (Harrington, 2016).  The strategy that most students use- and is unfortunately the least beneficial- is reviewing notes.  Think about it- reviewing your notes doesn’t take much effort or energy.  It’s a pretty low level cognitive task.  Perhaps the biggest problem with this approach is that you may feel very confident with the material, often too confident, even if you don’t know the content well (Karpicke & Blunt, 2011).  The reason that this is problematic is that this overconfidence means you will probably stop studying too soon (Dunlosky & Rawson, 2012).

Reviewing is a good starting place, but you can’t stop there if you want to really learn the material and do well in the class.  Learning requires much more active engagement with the content.  So what strategy does work best?  Testing yourself!  Researchers have found that students who continually try to recall the information just learned and quiz themselves often learn the most and perform the best (Roediger & Karpicke, 2006). In their study, students were asked to learn content one of three ways:

1. Study the material four times (SSSS)
2. Study the material three times and then test yourself once, recalling the content (SSST)
3. Study the material once and test yourself three times (STTT)

As you can see in the chart, students who spent their entire time studying did the best at first.  However, a week later, the opposite results were found.  The students who engaged in the most testing did the best even though they spent the least amount of time studying!  Knowing the information five minutes later is obviously not nearly as important as being able to remember the content a week later.


Psychologists call this the “testing effect.”  Research has consistently found that testing yourself is the best way to learn.  What this means is that we need to think differently about tests.  We used to think about tests as a way to show what we have learned, but this research shows us that testing is also a way TO learn! In fact, it is one of the best ways to learn.

The good news is that there are many mobile and online tools that can make testing yourself easy to do.  For example, the Cengage Learning MindTap Mobile app has flashcards and quizzes right at your fingertips.  Creating your own flashcards is a great way to put the testing effect into practice.  Taking practice or online quizzes in MindTap will also help you make the most of your time by engaging in strategies that really work.  If you want to get the most out of your study time, be sure to test yourself by using flashcards and quizzes.


Dr. Christine Harrington is a professor of Psychology and Student Success and the director of the Center for the Enrichment of Learning and Teaching at Middlesex County College in NJ.  She is an expert on student success research and is the author of a research-based first-year seminar textbook, Student Success in College:  Doing What Works!  2nd edition published by Cengage Learning.  She is also the coauthor of Foundations for Critical Thinking, published by the National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition.  She frequently presents at national conferences, colleges and universities, engaging audiences on numerous topics such as motivation, maximizing the use of syllabus, rigorous yet supportive curriculum, critical thinking, and dynamic lecturing.  For more information about Dr. Harrington, visit her website at

Harrington, C. M. (2016).  Student success in college:  Doing what works! 2nd edition.  Boston:  Cengage Learning.
Karpicke, J. D., & Blunt, J. R. (2011). Retrieval practice produces more learning than elaborative studyingwith concept mapping. Science, 331(6018), 772-775.
Roediger, H., & Karpicke, J. D. (2006). Test-Enhanced Learning: Taking Memory Tests Improves Long-Term Retention. Psychological Science, 17(3), 249-255.   doi:10.1111/j.1467-9280.2006.01693.x


New iPhone App Empowers College Students to Communicate Health Information, Gives Parents Relief as Kids Go Off to School

Apple Platform Gives New Meaning to “Having a Voice in Your Healthcare”


Dallas, September 1, 2015 – College students are heading back to school. Technology now allows students the ability to protect their voices in their own healthcare, all through an iPhone app and website that allow users to capture their thoughts regarding the care they would want to receive in the event of an accident where they cannot speak for themselves. The app also allows users to identify the people who they would want to speak for them in such a situation.

For students, MyDirectives MOBILE means they can engage in advance care planning and independence – and give their parents a sense of relief that they are planning ahead.

No one should have to wonder if they will receive the treatments they would want, or who will speak for them in the event of a health emergency; this video explains how the app makes identifying a healthcare agent simple.

As college students move away from home, the MyDirectives iPhone app empowers them to record and make accessible the healthcare information they choose to share. Users’ healthcare treatment priorities are accessible even when an iPhone is locked, to ensure that people’s voices are always heard, no matter what the case.

“Healthcare reform is happening so quickly and so pervasively in our society,” said MyDirectives CEO Jeff Zucker, “but much of it is behind-the-scenes from the general public. We are thrilled we’re able to use our technology to help people with an everyday concern: how to be in contact if there’s an emergency far away.”

Mindy Berkson, a MyDirectives user who is sending her twins off to college this week, said, “Knowing that I can be easily reached in case of an emergency is crucial. It took a terrible car accident with my older daughter to teach me this valuable lesson. Not being able to gather information from the emergency room made the two-plus hour drive to her seem like an eternity.”

MyDirectives MOBILE is an extension of, the critically acclaimed all-digital emergency, critical and advance care planning platform. An emergency, critical and advance care plan is a comprehensive document that can include elements of a living will, healthcare power of attorney and a person’s thoughts, goals and preferences related to his or her healthcare and specific medical treatments. A thorough plan, when accessible, can help people and their medical teams share important information about the individual’s healthcare. MyDirectives, with users in all 50 states and over 25 countries since going live in 2012, has been recognized by leading doctors, public officials, policy experts and consumer organizations for giving people a voice in their care.

Dr. Monica Williams-Murphy, a board-certified emergency physician at the University of Alabama Huntsville Hospital, where she also serves as the medical director for advance care planning and end-of-life education, said, “By giving people the ability to both create a comprehensive emergency care plan and populate it into their Medical ID with just a few taps, MyDirectives is transforming today’s healthcare. For a patient’s loved ones, there is nothing like hearing their wishes in their own words – which MyDirectives allows via the ability to upload videos – to know that you are making the right decisions at a time of crisis.”

The latest video from MyDirectives, the first completely free online advance care planning service, shows young people how they can do that via MyDirectives’ App. In a recent blog post, MyDirectives provides tips to students to help them get ready for school, including of course, creating an emergency medical plan.

MyDirectives’ leadership is also available for interview.


MyDirectives®, a service of Dallas, Texas-based ADVault, Inc., is the first completely digital emergency, critical and advance care planning platform. MyDirectives MOBILE™ was launched in 2015. Additional information can be found at and .MyDirectives was named by PC Magazine as one of the 100 best websites.

Media Contact
Heather Cabral
West End Strategy Team
Office: 202-776-7700
Cell: 202-550-6880

Start the Year Off Right: Tips and Tricks for Improving Time Management

Part 2

In time with the start of the fall semester, Cengage Learning unveiled best practices on improving grades through time management. In the Part 2 of this article series, we will share a few more of our top tips to becoming a time management master.


Building on earlier tips for time management including making a schedule, taking advantage of small chunks of time, and studying smarter, we have included more advice below to help keep yourself on track this school year.

Go DigitalTo keep up in today’s increasingly digital landscape, most educational resources include a digital component. These digital extensions feature tools and resources to maximize student success and engagement. However, many students are either unaware they have access to these digital tools or underestimate the impact these tools can have on academic performance. Many digital tools, such as Cengage Learning’s digital learning solution MindTap, use a combination of reading, multimedia, activities and assessments, to engage users and maximize understanding and retention. MindTap also includes features like scheduling, notifications and messaging to help you stay organized and on top of upcoming deadlines. Take advantage of the digital resources available to you – and activate (and use!) them early in the semester, rather than waiting until crunch time. Studies show, students that use MindTap get better grades than those that do not.

Prioritize: The first step to time management is taking stock of all the different activities, commitments and responsibilities that make up day-to-day life. Taking an honest look at the big picture is essential to identifying priorities and possibly cutting unnecessary or superfluous activities out temporarily. From there, you can more easily identify the priorities that are most important and make sure they take precedent over less pressing commitments.

Get OrganizedOrganization is key to successful time management and being organized also helps to avoid unexpected interruption. Before settling down to study, be sure you have all the resources and tools you need to complete the assignments you will be working on. There is no greater nuisance to hitting a stride only to realize a missing textbook or forgotten computer charger.

Schedule in Fun Time: Time management does not equal all work and no play. Actually, students who effectively manage their time tend to have more time for socializing and fun since they aren’t wasting precious time procrastinating or being unproductive. Making sure to schedule some free time each week is not only important to overall happiness but is also key to maintaining high levels of productivity.

The start of the semester is a great opportunity to give a fresh boost to your study routine. Tackling the time management sinkhole is one of the best ways to kick your academic performance into high gear.  By taking advantage of even a few of our time management tips, you can streamline your study habits and maximize your classroom potential. Good luck!