Category Archives: Other

DELTA VARIANT HAS FAMILIES CONSIDERING TUITION INSURANCE IN CASE STUDENT UNEXPECTEDLY WITHDRAWS FROM SCHOOL

GradGuard’s tuition insurance first and only program to cover COVID-19 and mental health conditions nationwide; provides financial safety net when schools don’t

PHOENIX (August 10, 2021):  Nationwide, college families are once again finding themselves evaluating the ever-changing updates on how schools will protect students from Coronavirus as the Delta variant becomes a growing concern. As parents prepare to pay their final tuition bill before arriving on campus, among the many questions they are smart to ask is: What will happen to my tuition payment if my student is forced to withdraw from college due to becoming ill with COVID or other illnesses and unable to continue their term?

For many families, college is one of the largest investments they will ever make. As a result, it’s a smart move for anyone paying tuition to understand their school’s refund policy and to consider protecting their investment with tuition insurance.

“The thousands of dollars students and families are paying for college tuition, housing and academic fees are often at risk,” said John Fees, parent of a college student and the co-founder of GradGuard, one of the largest providers of student insurance programs in the country with partnerships at more than 400 colleges and universities. “The idea of losing money can create even more financial stress for students and their parents. GradGuard enables students and families to make the decision on whether to withdraw is based on the well-being of their student and not just the money at risk.”

The coronavirus pandemic and its surging Delta variant has brought important attention to the risk of investing in college and particularly, how schools manage refunds.

While neither schools or tuition insurance provide refunds for a change in the form of instruction (such as the move to online classes), families may be surprised that they will likely lose thousands of dollars if their student’s semester is disrupted by a health event and forced to withdraw.

In fact, only 6% of schools surveyed in 2019 provided 100% refunds for tuition and virtually none provide refunds for academic fees or housing. Many universities may refund a portion of tuition through the first few weeks of school, but most schools will not provide a refund after the fifth week of classes. Academic fees, deposits and housing are usually not eligible for a refund.

The risk can often surprise college parents. Less than a quarter of parents surveyed in a 2019 College Parents of America report indicated that their student’s college refund policy was disclosed to them during the enrollment process.

Families are also often unaware that their college student may be vulnerable to the stress of college life. The National College Health Assessment produced by the American College Health Association demonstrates the frequency of incidents such as illnesses, accidents, and injuries that can require a student to complete a medical withdrawal. This data also reveals a growth in chronic illnesses and rapid growth in serious mental health incidents during the past five years.

“If a student has a controlled pre-existing condition like serious anxiety or mental health conditions, and they are medically cleared to attend school, GradGuard’s tuition insurance can cover them,” said Fees. “If they must withdraw under the recommendation of a licensed professional in their state, tuition insurance can reimburse the out of pocket costs associated with their housing, tuition, and student fees .  GradGuard’s tuition insurance can help reduce the stress students face in these situations and help everyone focus on the well-being of the student.”

It’s important for families to note that even prior to COVID-19, student health conditions force thousands of students to withdraw from classes each year, without the ability to recover the thousands of dollars paid for classes, fees and housing.

The Top Three Reasons GradGuard’s Tuition Insurance Is A Smart Decision:

• If the school does not provide a 100% refund – Ask your school about their refund policy.

• If the student has more than $1,000 of academic expenses – Even if the school provides a 100% refund for tuition, most do not refund academic fees or student housing costs.

• If the student or family is taking out a student loan – Student and parent loans must be repaid even if a student must take a medical withdrawal. Tuition insurance can be used to repay the balance of these loans.

“GradGuard’s tuition insurance provides affordable coverage up to 100% of the cost of college including student housing, tuition and academic charges,” said Fees. “In addition, each policy also includes Student Life Assistance that helps families through the logistics that may accompany an unexpected student withdrawal. ”

Despite the stress and changes caused by Coronavirus to higher education, the good news is that college families can protect both their student and their investment by purchasing GradGuard’s tuition insurance, with rates as low as $106 for $10,000 of tuition insurance coverage at participating schools. Coverage must be purchased prior to the first day of school.

“Students and their families can take confidence in schools that provide GradGuard’s insurance programs to help protect their investment in college and are prepared to overcome the unexpected events that may otherwise disrupt their semester,” said Fees.

About GradGuard: GradGuard is a technology-enabled pioneer in developing innovative protections designed to reduce the financial risks of college life. Since 2009, GradGuard is trusted by more than 400 colleges and universities and since its founding has protected nearly one million students and families. Visit GradGuard.com to use its college insurance search tool to find the insurance programs that are right for your college student or recommended by their college or university.

Contact:
Natalie Tarangioli
480-485-6138
ntarangioli@gradguard.com

Three Tips to Help You “Glow Up” in the Real World

Sponsored by Alcon

The transition to adult life can be both exciting and terrifying all at the same time. On one hand, it’s a time to celebrate freedom and limitless possibilities. On the other hand, being in the “real world” comes with tough choices and loads of responsibility. But don’t worry. Whether you have already accepted a job, or you are still figuring out what to do this summer, these simple tips will help you “glow up” in a real way as you make the leap into your next phase.

Crush Your Goals the S.M.A.R.T. Way

To truly own this new phase of your life, set S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-based) goals – no matter how big or small. Here’s how this works: Think about something you’d like to crush, like learning how to cook quick, healthy meals for the week. Start by setting a goal to cook a new recipe using a different style or skill three times a week for a month. Once you’ve gotten into a groove then work it into your new daily routine and schedule. Pro tip: Put your goals and plans down on paper. A cool way to bring your goals to life and stay on track is to create a vision board, a bullet journal, set smartphone alerts or write it in your calendar.

Girl, Get Your Eyes Checked

Face it, your new normal is crazy busy and it can be easy to let your health slip off the to-do list – especially your eyesight. How are you going to “glow up” if you can’t see past your own nose? In order to take on the world, make sure you visit your eye doctor for an annual eye exam so your eyes are in tip-top shape. While you’re there, ask the doctor for a dependable, easy-to-use contact lens that can keep up with your new “go-go-go” lifestyle.

“Vision care is often overlooked, but it is one of the most important factors of your overall health,” said Kristin Anderson, Director of Professional Education, US Vision Care & Dry Eye at Alcon. “Many college-aged or young working professional patients have complaints about eye issues or wanting a comfortable alternative to eyeglasses. These days, I recommend individuals try a daily disposable contact lens that provides precise vision and all-day comfort, and that are easy to put in and take out. Many love PRECISION1® and PRECISION1® for Astigmatism contact lenses because they do all these things and open them up to a world of possibilities.”

Be a Confidence Queen

Confidence is the key to success in the real world – on the inside and out. And there’s only one way to be confident – just do it. Get that haircut you’ve been wanting, buy that outfit that makes you feel your best or tackle your fear of public speaking with a few self-help TikToks. Whatever you do, don’t forget that your journey is just that, yours. Everyone’s path is different, so don’t compare yourself to your friends. Embrace this exciting new time, and know that when you feel confident in yourself, you’ll be happier and ready to tackle any challenges that may come up.

For more information, visit Precision.MyAlcon.com to find out more about PRECISION1 lenses.

Ask your eye care professional for complete wear, care and safety information.

With Mental Health on the Rise Among College Students, GradGuard Tuition Insurance Provides Viable Options for Families

GradGuard’s student insurance program provides refunds when colleges may not to students who medically withdraw due to mental health conditions and other covered reasons.

Phoenix, AZ (July 21, 2021): GradGuard, one of the largest providers of student insurance programs in the country, has broken another barrier in the tuition protection landscape by becoming the first and only program in the country to cover mental health as a condition. The growth in student mental health concerns looms as another risk to the investments families make when paying for college.

“The growth of mental health conditions in college students is a real risk to the investment families are making in higher education,” said John Fees, Co-founder, and Managing Director of GradGuard. “Though colleges and universities are providing robust services to support their students, they are unlikely to provide a refund if a student cannot complete the semester.”

“If a student has a controlled pre-existing condition like serious anxiety or mental health conditions, and they are medically cleared to attend school, we will cover them. If they must withdraw under the recommendation of a licensed professional in their state, tuition insurance can cover their housing, their tuition, and student fees.  GradGuard’s tuition insurance can help reduce the stress students face in these situations and help everyone focus on the well-being of the student.”

GradGuard’s coverage of mental health comes as data confirms the spike of mental health cases on college and university campuses. Among the troubling trends:

• 2020 report by the American College Health Association found more than half of nearly 9,000 students surveyed experienced anxiety or depression

• A nationwide study published by the Journal of Adolescent Health found that rates of moderate to severe anxiety and depression among U.S. college students rose substantially over the last few years — from 18% and 23%, to 34% and 41%, respectively.

• 2020 survey by American Council on Education found 68% of college and university presidents say student mental health and well-being is top concern

Like it did with COVID-19, GradGuard – thanks to its partnership with Allianz Global Assistance – is the only insurance program provider in the country to reimburse up to 100% of the financial losses when a student needs to withdraw because of a covered reason such as covered mental or covered physical illness.

Most higher education institutions only provide a partial refund of tuition during the first five weeks of a semester, and virtually no schools provide refunds for academic fees or housing, however, GradGuard’s tuition insurance can provide a refund for the total cost of college when a school may not.

“As we have been since our beginning, we’re going to be there for schools and families to support students on their path towards graduation,” said Fees. “If COVID-19 demonstrates one thing, schools and students are financially vulnerable.  It should be clear to students and families that higher education institutions cannot afford to provide refunds and families should not expect to get a refund if their student is forced leave school because of mental health issues, CO1VID-19, accidents, injuries, or many other reasons, including the unexpected death of a tuition payor.”

“The idea of losing money can create even more financial stress for students and their parents. GradGuard enables students and families to make the decision on whether to withdraw is based on the well-being of their student and not just the money at risk.

GradGuard’s tuition insurance provides affordable coverage up to 100% of the cost of college including student housing, tuition and academic charges” said Fees. “In addition, each policy also includes Student Life Assistance that helps families through the logistics that may accompany an unexpected student withdrawal.

About GradGuard
GradGuard is a technology-enabled pioneer in developing innovative protections designed to reduce the financial risks of college life. Since 2009, GradGuard has been trusted by more than 400 colleges and universities and since its founding, has protected more than 800,000 students and families. For more insights on #collegelife follow @GradGuard on social media.

For more Information:
Natalie Tarangioli
480-485-6138
ntarangioli@gradguard.com

Terms, conditions, and exclusions apply. Plan(s) underwritten by BCS Insurance Company or Jefferson Insurance Company. AGA Service Company is the licensed producer and administrator of these plans. Plans include insurance benefits and assistance services. Contact AGA Service Company at 800-284-8300 or 9950 Mayland Drive, Richmond, VA 23233 or customerservice@allianzassistance.com.

GEN.G AND EASTERN MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY COLLABORATE FOR ESPORTS SUMMER PROGRAMMING

Partnership to include League of Legends and Rocket League tournaments, summer camp, and  a speaker series in conjunction with the university’s back-to-school events

YPSILANTI, MICHIGAN (July 15, 2021) – Global esports organization Gen.G and Eastern Michigan University (EMU) announced a new slate of esports programming to gather students, alumni and local community members. Events will include a Summer Showdown Tournament, an esports summer camp, and a Gaming Career Speaker Series.

The Summer Showdown Tournament is an invitational tournament for 5v5 League of Legends on July 24 through 25 and 3v3 Rocket League on July 31 through Aug 1. Local universities, high schools, as well as other collegiate teams outside the region with strong performances will be invited to participate. Spectators will be able to watch the matches on the EMU Esports Twitch channel. Students from the esports program will also curate up to 20 hours of additional weekly Twitch programming on the official EMU Esports Twitch page.

“Eastern Michigan University created several innovative gaming programs — for prospective and current students, and alums — last year even while students were studying remotely,” said Chris Park, Chief Executive Officer at Gen.G. “We are thrilled to continue that great work together this summer in a big way.”

Other upcoming programming includes the revival of the Eagles Gaming Club, EMU’s  on-campus esports club, by students that will bring curated events to the EMU community. Those interested can reach out to the club via Discord.

“The overall interest among students in collegiate esports is reaching new levels every year,” said Eastern Michigan University President, James Smith. “Having Gen.G, a recognized international leader in the esports world, as a partner is a tremendous asset to the University and our students. Engaging students in gaming competitions is a fun and exciting way to create new friendships as well as establish campus pride. Even more significant, from my standpoint, are the opportunities to share with our students the many career prospects in the exploding esports industry – which can include everything from arts and graphics, to business and marketing, to science, cybersecurity and technology.”

EMU and Gen.G have also launched an esports summer camp, where registration is still open and those interested can sign-up here.

Fresh off of their victory in the Temmo cup, EMU will continue to support competitive teams in various leagues during the 2021-2022 school year.

Heading into the end of summer, EMU will also host a Gaming Careers Speaker Series, which will teach students across various majors how they can apply their traditional degree to the gaming industry and seek other professional opportunities in the space.

The university encourages local high school students, alumni and community members to participate in events at EMU Esports to get a better feel for campus life and enjoy the gaming community.

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About Gen.G:
Established in 2017, Gen.G is the leading esports organization connecting the United States and Asia. Currently ranked no. 6 in the Forbes list of the “World’s Most Valuable Esports Companies,” Gen.G is the only major organization that owns and operates top teams in the world’s leading esports markets — China, South Korea and the United States. Its unique portfolio of teams, winners of seven global championships to date, includes the Seoul Dynasty franchise of the Overwatch League; 2014 and 2017 League of Legends world champion team in South Korea; the world’s top all-female Fortnite team, based in Los Angeles; and the NBA 2K League’s historic expansion franchise in Shanghai.

United under #TigerNation, Gen.G’s core mission is to help fans and athletes use the power of gaming and esports to get ahead in and beyond the competition. The company has quickly become a commercial and thought leader, building a global, inclusive and cross-cultural future for sports entertainment. Its widely acclaimed initiatives include: #TeamBumble, the leading team platform for the empowerment of women in gaming; and Gen.G Elite Esports Academy, the world’s first fully-integrated academic esports program. Gen.G’s teams, content creators and corporate staff work out of their offices in Los Angeles.

About Eastern Michigan University
Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves more than 16,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University’s Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and, its graduate school. EMU is regularly recognized by national publications for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University’s website.

Media Contact:
Gen.G: GenG@DKCnews.com

Best of the Best Campus Apps Named by Modo in the 2021 Appademy Awards

Appademy Awards from Modo recognizes universities and colleges for app development, design and UX, and this year, new categories like virtual commencement to reflect how campuses have adjusted to the pandemic

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Modo Labs is the top no-code app building platform for higher education and enterprise, and today it published the winning college apps in the annual Modo Appademy Awards. This juried award recognizes colleges and universities that have built exemplary digital experiences in apps built on the Modo platform.  Click to tweet this news.

“The Appademy Awards not only recognizes the dedicated and creative efforts of colleges using the Modo platform but it also is a glimpse into the priorities and needs of institutions of higher education,” said Matt Willmore, senior director of product marketing at Modo. “In this year’s entries, we saw excellent examples of the ways that college apps made tasks easier, such as registering for classes and paying fees, and also substituted for many in-person college experiences like orientation and graduation.”

One trend that was noted by judges is that while some app capabilities were created out of urgency due to the pandemic, these ended up being features colleges kept when it became clear that students and staff were comfortable using them. Features such as ticket requests for games, registration, and add/drop appointments are now permanent and available even as restrictions lift.

“It’s impressive to see the variation and creativity of the app development teams. We saw again and again in this year’s applicant pool that colleges did more than get tasks done, they created digital experiences and options for students to engage with their college in ways we’ve never seen before and in ways that kept college an engaging, immersive experience,” added Willmore.

The 2021 Appademy Awards include one overall Best Unified App and two categories for student engagement and app design, and winners came from every region including the Cayman Islands and Australia.

Best Overall

• Best Unified App – Winner: University of California, Merced

• Second Place: Vassar College

Best Apps for Student Engagement

• Best Health and Wellness App – Winner: Vassar College

• Second Place (TIE): University of California, Berkeley and University of Redlands

• Best Recruiting and Admissions – Winner: St Francis College

• Second Place: University of Rhode Island

• Best Commencement – Winner (TIE): University of Central Florida and University of Connecticut

• Second Place: Santa Monica College

• Best New Student Orientation – Winner: The George Washington University

• Second Place: Northern Arizona University

• Most Innovative App for Communication – Winner (TIE): California State University, San Bernardino and University of Houston

• Second Place (TIE) University of Texas Arlington and Assumption University

Best Apps for Design and Experience:

• Best Overall Design – Winner: Santa Monica College

• Second Place: California State University, Channel Islands

• Best Student-Driven App – Winner: Northern Arizona University

• Second Place: California State University, East Bay

• Best Marketplace – Winner: University of California, Berkeley

• Best App Personalization (XModule) – Winner: University of Houston

• Second Place: Carson-Newman University

• Best Desktop Experience – Winner: Humboldt State University

• Second Place: Penn State University

David Osburn, assistant director for communications and mobile strategy at Vassar College which won for Best Health and Wellness app said that the college redesigned the app this year giving special attention to helping their communities manage through the health crisis. “We’re thrilled that Vassar Mobile has been recognized with the 2021 Health and Wellness Appademy Award! This year has been a challenge for everyone’s mental and physical health and wellness. We’re proud of the work we’ve done to provide our audiences with quick and easy access to tools and resources that can help during such a trying time.”

Appademy Award winning designs and “plays” serve as leading practice examples and models for other institutions around the world including the more than 300 using the Modo no-code platform.

See a webinar announcing the winners here.

About Modo
Trusted by hundreds of the world’s most recognized universities and brands from around the world, the Modo no-code app platform offers enterprise-scale mobile engagement and communication capabilities that allow users to quickly and easily create unified mobile campus and workplace experiences that increase connectivity for employees, students, faculty, and guests. Using Modo, customers quickly unlock innovation and digitally transform their organizations by empowering the domain expertise of any person within their organization, regardless of technical skill set. For more information, visit modolabs.com, @ModoLabs

For the media: Find images of the winning apps here: http://prez.ly/lnGb

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Media Contact:
Jennifer Harrison for Modo Labs
jennifer@PandoPublicRelations.com
+1-916-716-0636

REGISTRATION OPENS FOR NATIONAL PREMED DAY MAY 28

Free, Virtual Event is Biggest Premed Event in the World

Boulder, Colorado. May 24th, 2021. Mappd has opened registration for National Premed Day, enabling premedical students to attend a free virtual conference to better prepare themselves for medical school.

National Premed Day is an annual holiday created by Mappd, LLC. National Premed Day is on Friday, May 28th, 2021. The date, 5/28, is a reference to the number “528” which is a perfect score on the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT®). The MCAT® is a required exam that most premedical students take in the year before applying to medical school.

With 10,000+ Premeds in attendance in 2020, its inaugural year, National Premed Day has become the biggest premedical student event in the world. In 2021, the event includes 1 day of live streaming, with 4 tracks of topics, and 35 speakers from throughout the medical community.

“National Premed Day is something that I’ve wanted to do for a long time,” said Dr. Ryan Gray, Mappd CEO. “I started National Premed Day to bring the best minds in the premed world together to help students navigate their journey to med school.”

Premedical students, as well as their families and advisors, are all welcome to attend. Registration is open now at https://nationalpremedday.com/

Company information. Mappd, LLC was founded in 2019 by premedical process experts Rachel Grubbs and Dr. Ryan Gray. Mappd is best known for its eponymous software solution, a platform that premeds use throughout their premed years to track progress as they navigate the road to med school. Mappd also offers 1-on-1 advising services. In addition to the free virtual event National Premed Day, Mappd offers premeds hundreds of hours of free information via its YouTube channel.

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For more information, press only: Rachel Grubbs | 614.568.3101 | rachel@mappd.com
For more information about National Premed Day: https://nationalpremedday.com/
For more information about Mappd, LLC: https://mappd.com/about

Café Bustelo® to Award $125K for Its El Café del Futuro Scholarship

Iconic espresso-style coffee brand Café Bustelo® recently launched the 2021 Café Bustelo® El Café del Futuro Scholarship in partnership with the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU). This year, the company will include an additional $25,000 in scholarships in celebration of its partnership with the upcoming Warner Bros. Pictures film IN THE HEIGHTS. From the creator of Hamilton and the director of Crazy Rich Asians, IN THE HEIGHTS—where streets are made of music and little dreams become big—is the cinematic event of the summer, and Café Bustelo is proud to be the exclusive coffee of IN THE HEIGHTS. The film releases in theaters nationwide and streams in the U.S. exclusively on HBO Max – June 11. It will be available on HBO Max for 31 days from theatrical release.

Since the scholarship began in 2014, $430,000 in college funds have been awarded to 86 Latino students nationwide through the partnership. This year, Café Bustelo wants applicants to share how their heritage, family, and community have impacted their desire and motivation to obtain a college degree; how they plan to give back to their community; and what they intend to accomplish with their degree in an essay in English or Spanish (800 words or less). Eligible applicants have the opportunity to receive one of 25 $5,000 scholarships. All eligible applications must be received by July 5, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. CT. Scholarship recipients will be announced on or about September 7, 2021.

“At Café Bustelo, we celebrate young Latino scholars who are committed to advancement and education,” said Eduardo Merino, Senior Brand Manager at Café Bustelo. “Our society has gone through so much this past year, and it may be even more difficult for a student to prioritize higher education. Café Bustelo wants to support them in that effort. Estamos aquí para ayudar en lo que podamos.”

“We are proud to partner with Café Bustelo to offer El Café del Futuro Scholarships to deserving Hispanic students across the country,” said HACU President and CEO Antonio R. Flores. “These scholarships support students and highlight the importance of the Latino culture and the vital role families and communities play in motivating students to achieve their educational goals.”

For complete information and scholarship guidelines, please visit www.hacu.net/hacu/Scholarships.asp.

Café Bustelo coffee is available at leading grocery retailers nationwide and online at CafeBustelo.com. Visit CafeBustelo.com for more information or follow @CafeBustelo on Instagram, Twitter and @CafeBusteloOfficial on Facebook.

About Café Bustelo
Our delicious coffee and rich espresso heritage was born in 1928. Since then, we’ve not only been proud of our rich, full-bodied flavor, but also of our unique and inviting culture. Café Bustelo coffee can be prepared using your preferred method. Available in the forms you want, including K-Cup® pods.

About HACU
The Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities represents more than 500 colleges and universities committed to Hispanic higher education success in the U.S., Puerto Rico, Latin America, Spain and school districts throughout the U.S. The association’s headquarters are located in San Antonio, Texas, with regional offices in Washington, D.C., and Sacramento, California. HACU is the only national association representing existing and emerging Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs). For more information, visit hacu.net or follow @HACUnews on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

About IN THE HEIGHTS
In the Heights fuses Lin-Manuel Miranda’s kinetic music and lyrics with director Jon M. Chu’s lively and authentic eye for storytelling to capture a world very much of its place, but universal in its experience, where the streets are made of music and little dreams become big. The film stars Anthony Ramos, Corey Hawkins, singer/songwriter Leslie Grace, Melissa Barrera, Olga Merediz, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Gregory Diaz IV, Stephanie Beatriz, Dascha Polanco and Jimmy Smits.

Chu directed the film from a screenplay by Quiara Alegría Hudes, based on the musical stage play, music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, book by Quiara Alegría Hudes and concept by Miranda. Miranda, Hudes, Scott Sanders, Anthony Bregman and Mara Jacobs produced the film, with David Nicksay and Kevin McCormick serving as executive producers. Warner Bros. Pictures presents a 5000 Broadway / Barrio Grrrl! / Likely Story / SGS Pictures Production, A Jon M. Chu Film, In the Heights. Slated to open on June 11, 2021 in theaters and on HBO Max, the film will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures. It will be available on HBO Max for 31 days from theatrical release. The film is rated PG-13 for some language and suggestive references. www.intheheights-movie.com

K-Cup is a trademark of Keurig Green Mountain, Inc., used with permission.

SOURCE Café Bustelo
Related Links
https://www.cafebustelo.com

Media Contact
Georgia Lyman
georgia.lyman@mslgroup.com
(404) 477-7831

SEEKING COLLEGE AGED APPLICANTS TO PARTICIPATE IN BI-PARTISAN THINK TANK

Civic Synergy Aims to Foster Cross-Partisan Conversations Resulting in Policy Solutions to Share with Members of Congress

CAMBRIDGE (May 18, 2021)Civic Synergy, a pilot program based at MIT, announces today a call to action for college aged participants to join in discussions about some of the most important issues facing America today.  Participants will engage in four sessions that include brief, informative, and inspiring talks followed by facilitated discussions aimed at generating solutions. Through the program, participants will not only discuss pragmatic policy proposals that they can present to members of Congress but will build the toolkit to have productive conversations with those across the aisle.

Being named a 2021 Davis Projects for Peace Fellowship recipient, Civic Synergy aims to foster productive cross-partisan conversations between students and ultimately the creation of bipartisan policy solutions shared with members of Congress. As part of the program, young Americans will have the chance to propose real, tractable solutions to combat important issues with a politically diverse group of peers. This summer, the sessions will focus on, combatting starting with climate change, while preserving economic development, with a politically diverse group of peers.  For more information about the David Projects for Peace Fellowship, please visit: https://pkgcenter.mit.edu/programs/fellowships/davis-projects-for-peace-fellowships/

Civic Synergy’s
pilot program will conduct two Think Tank sessions which will occur throughout June and July.  Each group of young Americans will provide important information into the issues that are most important to the country’s future and will offer invaluable insight into how the leaders of tomorrow will find solutions to our biggest obstacles, all done in a bi-partisan forum.

“As a member of a Civic Synergy Think Tank, participants will have an opportunity to work closely with students from very different political backgrounds” said Kiara Wahnschafft, Co-Founder and MIT Junior. “This is a unique experience that you can speak to as you launch your career and build your resume.”

Think Tank I of the pilot program will occur:
June 9th, June 16th, June 23rd, and June 30th from 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM EST

Think Tank II of the pilot program will occur:
July 7th, July 14th, July 21st, and July 28th from 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM EST

“Our generation is filled with creatives, with activists, and with visionaries. We aim to tap into their ideas by working together to turn our roundtable discussions into Congressional solutions” added MIT Sophomore and Co-Founder, Mallika Pajjuri. “What better way for our voices to be heard, than to speak loudly and with support of all sides of the political landscape?”

Interested students can apply at tinyurl.com/civicsynergy.
Additional information about this pilot program can be found at civicsynergy.live.

The deadline for applicants will be:  MAY 31, 2021

About Civic Synergy

Civic Synergy aims to foster productive cross-partisan conversations between students and ultimately the creation of bipartisan policy solutions shared with members of Congress. As part of the program, young Americans will have the chance to propose real, tractable solutions to combat important issues, starting with climate change — while preserving economic development — with a politically diverse group of peers.

Media Contact
Mallika Pajjuri
mallika@civicsynergy.co

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Registrations Open for Collegiate Esports Invitational Feat. Fortnite

It’s Time to Go Full Send in the Collegiate Esports Invitational Featuring Fortnite as Registrations to Compete Are Officially Open

Driven by “Where Conference Champions Are Crowned,” 10 NCAA Conferences Will Host Their Own Tournaments on May 21-23, with Each Champion and Runner-Up Advancing to National Finals on May 27

LOS ANGELES (May 13, 2021) – GCN, Inc. (Gaming Community Network), an independent media group dedicated to gaming and esports, and Van Wagner today announced registrations are open through May 19, 2021 for the Collegiate Esports Invitational Featuring Fortnite taking place online on May 21-27, 2021.

Built for “Where Conference Champions Are Crowned,” the event is open to all students from the 110 colleges and universities in the America East Conference, Big South Conference, Big West Conference, Colonial Athletic Association, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, Southland Conference, Sun Belt Conference, West Coast Conference, Western Athletic Conference and the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association who can now enter their Duo Fortnite teams to compete in a best of one, double elimination format by registering at www.collegiateesportsinvitational.com.

The champion and runner-up from each conference tournament will advance to the National Finals on May 27 in a bracketed format, double elimination format. Along with earning bragging rights as the overall champions, teams will be competing for a $10,000 prize pool with $500 for each of the conference tournament winners and $5,000 to the winner of the National Final.

All of the tournaments can be viewed at twitch.tv/CollegiateEsportsInv, as well as co-streamed on each team and conference’s Twitch site if they request it. The tournament will also be carried by GCN across 85+ gaming and esports centric websites to enhance viewership and messaging. GCN reaches 65M+ monthly uniques in the U.S.

The schedule for 10 NCAA Conferences is (all times Eastern):

Friday, May 21
• Big South Conference – 6 pm
• Western Athletic Conference – 8 pm

Saturday, May 22
• CIAA – 2 pm
• Sun Belt Conference – 4 pm
• Southland Conference – 6 pm
• West Coast Conference – 8 pm

Sunday, May 23
• Colonial Athletic Association – 2 pm
• America East Conference – 4 pm
• MAAC – 6 pm
• Big West Conference – 8 pm

“We’re really excited to finally bring the biggest collegiate esports tournament to life that is open to all students in the participating conferences to compete not only for their school, but for the glory of ultimately becoming a true champion,” said Chris Kindt, Chief Marketing Officer of GCN.

The Collegiate Esports Invitational continues this fall with two additional tournaments. Plans will be unveiled this summer.

About Gaming Community Network:
GCN, Inc. (Gaming Community Network) is the only independent media group completely dedicated to gaming and esports across community sites, content producers, influencers and tournament/event operators. Bridging the gap between traditional media and gaming with a “Gamer First” promise, GCN’s aggregated & integrated proprietary media network reaches 65M+ MAU’s in the US (115M+ MAUs globally) driving scale for premium content designed to provoke and share conversations. GCN builds bespoke strategy solutions from content creation to full-scale tournaments for any endpoint be it social, broadcast TV or live stream. As a GameSquare Esports Inc. (stock: GSQ, Canadian Stock Exchange) subsidiary, GCN collaborates with its partners to deliver memorable experiences for gamers and brands. To learn more, visit GCN.gg or follow on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/GamingCommunityNetwork/

About Van Wagner:
Van Wagner is a wholly owned subsidiary of Van Wagner Group LLC that creates, advises, and sells on behalf of world-class teams, leagues, brands, properties, and colleges. An innovator in the sports and media business, Van Wagner is a global leader in high-impact broadcast visible signage throughout the MLB, NBA, NCAA, and the highest levels of international soccer, sponsorships sales, premium ticketing, college multi-media rights, and in-venue content production at the world’s biggest sporting events. www.vanwagner.com

Media Contact:
DKC Esports for GCN
GCN@dkcnews.com

NBA 2K LEAGUE’S GEN.G TIGERS RELOCATE TO UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY

Lexington Welcomes First Major Esports Franchise as NBA 2K League Team Begins Its Second Season on May 19 and Quest for Championship

LOS ANGELES (May 11, 2021) Global esports organization Gen.G announced today that it is relocating its NBA 2K League franchise, the Gen.G Tigers of Shanghai, to facilities located at the University of Kentucky to compete virtually in its second season in the league and joining the new 12-team Eastern Conference.

Kicking off its 2021 NBA 2K League season with THE TIPOFF powered by AT&T on May 19-22 with a prize pool of $160,000, the team will practice and compete in the University of Kentucky Federal Credit Union Esports Lounge at The Cornerstone. The team will also have access to UK campus services including dining and the recreational center facilities across campus.

“We’ve forged an incredible global relationship with the University of Kentucky, so it’s only natural for our 2K League team to train and compete on the campus of the nation’s winningest college basketball program,” said by Chris Park, CEO of Gen.G. “UK is a vibrant community with state-of-the-art facilities, and our players are honored to be the first pro esports team in-residence at a major university.”

The team will have opportunities to interact with UK esports players and students as the esports community continues to grow on campus. Gen.G hopes to be able to make tickets available to watch live games in the Theater, if the public health situation allows for live attendance during the season.

“We are proud of our basketball heritage, so we couldn’t be more excited to welcome Gen.G.’s NBA 2K League team to our campus,” said Heath Price, Associate CIO at UK. “The team will play at the Cornerstone which has the best internet connectivity east of the Mississippi. They will have our full support.”

Led by Coach Lennon Ross, the Tigers have reloaded after its inaugural 6-10 season with a mix of returning and new players following the NBA 2K League Draft on March 13. The 2021 roster includes:

Chris “Turnupdefense” Anderson (@Turnupdefense) is in his 2nd season with the Tigers as a lockdown defender. He won an NBA 2K League championship with T-Wolves Gaming in 2019. Originally from Los Angeles, he now resides in Las Vegas when he’s not competing. Turnup is the only returning player from Gen.G’s 2020 roster.

Mihad “FEAST” Feratovic (@iFEAST__) joins the Tigers after spending last season with the 76ers GC and plays power forward. He was also one of the first two players in T-Wolves Gaming history. FEAST is originally from Brooklyn and also won a championship in 2019 with T-Wolves Gaming. FEAST is a two-time NBA 2K League Sportsmanship Award winner.

Alex “Bsmoove” Reese (@BsmooveJ) joins the team after the Tigers traded its #3 overall pick in the first round of the NBA 2K League Draft with his former team, the Warriors Gaming Squad. The shooting point guard brings a wealth of competitive experience. He is originally from Milwaukie, Oregon and enjoys playing and coaching basketball when he’s not competing in NBA 2K or Fortnite. Bsmoove is also a two-time tournament champion, winning both THE TURN and THE TICKET in 2019 with Warriors Gaming Squad. He was also named THE TICKET MVP in 2019.

Jordan “JMoney” Martinez (@JMoneyRep817) makes his debut with the Tigers this season after he was acquired from T-Wolves Gaming. The small forward averaged 18.2 points per game last season. JMoney is originally from Fort Worth, Texas. JMoney won a championship in 2019 with T-Wolves Gaming. A big difference this year will be he finally gets to play point guard, his natural position.

Donald “BumpyDon” Newsome (@BxmpyDon) is the 44th overall pick in the 2021 NBA 2K League Draft. BumpyDon was widely considered one of the more promising PF prospects in this year’s draft. Originally from Virginia Beach, VA, BumpyDon was the first rookie selected for the Gen.G Tigers this year.

Kennedy “Sawc” Tauala, Jr. (@sawc4L) is the 47th overall pick in the 2021 NBA 2K League Draft. Sawc is widely considered one of the better characters from this year’s draft pool. He is a hybrid player that can fill numerous roles on a team, which fits perfectly with the current setup of this year’s roster. Sawc is born and raised from Long Beach, CA and also has graduated from Arizona State University with a degree in Psychology.

In September 2019, the team became the 23rd franchise in the league and the first team not affiliated with a NBA team as part of a long-term strategic relationship to tap into Gen.G’s multinational brand across Asia and the U.S.

About Gen.G
Established in 2017, Gen.G is the leading esports organization connecting the United States and Asia. Currently ranked no. 6 in the Forbes list of the “World’s Most Valuable Esports Companies,” Gen.G is the only major organization that owns and operates top teams in the world’s leading esports markets — China, South Korea and the United States. Its unique portfolio of teams, winners of seven global championships to date, includes the Seoul Dynasty franchise of the Overwatch League; 2014 and 2017 League of Legends world champion team in South Korea; the world’s top all-female Fortnite team, based in Los Angeles; and the NBA 2K League’s historic expansion franchise in Shanghai.

United under #TigerNation, Gen.G’s core mission is to help fans and athletes use the power of gaming and esports to get ahead in and beyond the competition. The company has quickly become a commercial and thought leader, building a global, inclusive and cross-cultural future for sports entertainment. Its widely acclaimed initiatives include: #TeamBumble, the leading team platform for the empowerment of women in gaming; and Gen.G Elite Esports Academy, the world’s first fully-integrated academic esports program. Gen.G’s teams, content creators and corporate staff work out of their offices in Los Angeles, Seoul and Shanghai. More information about Gen.G esports and its teams can be found at this link.

About the University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for” three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes’ list of “America’s Best Employers.” We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

About the NBA 2K League
The NBA 2K League, a professional esports league co-founded by the NBA and Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (NASDAQ:TTWO), launched in 2018 and features the best NBA 2K players in the world. Each of the league’s 23 teams features six players who compete as unique characters in 5-on-5 play against the other teams in a mix of regular-season games, tournaments and playoffs. NBA 2K League partners include Anheuser-Busch, AT&T, Champion Athleticwear, Dash Radio, DoorDash, ESRevolution, Loco, Mondelēz International, Raynor Gaming, SAP, SCUF Gaming, Snickers, Sony Interactive Entertainment, Sport1, Twitch, Wilson and YouTube. For more information about the NBA 2K League, visit NBA2KLeague.com.

Media Contact
Gen.G:
GenG@DKCnews.com

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