When music connoisseur Jared Cassidy began teaching to school kids, he could never have fathomed that one day he would be handed the keys to a brand new 2015 Ford vehicle because of his exploits. The surreal moment for Cassidy materialized on the grandest music awards stage in the world, the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, when he was presented with the Music Educator Award.
The Ford vehicle giveaway is part of the Ford Motor Company’s initiative to expand on its long-time support of the GRAMMY Foundation®’s GRAMMY in the Schools®initiative by donating additional money through Ford’s innovative Drive 4 UR School program.
The Music Educator Award™ was established by the GRAMMY Foundation and The Recording Academy® to recognize current educators (K through college, public and private schools) who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the field of music education, and who demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in their schools. The Music Educator Award and honorariums are supported by a grant from Ford Motor Company Fund. In 2015, Ford Motor Company will also award a new 2015 car or truck to the Music Educator Awardee Jared Cassedy.
“Education is the cornerstone of a brighter future, and we are proud to work with the GRAMMY Foundation because of our shared commitment to providing educational opportunities for all,” said Pamela Alexander, director of community development, Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services. “Expanding our association to include another innovative Ford community program and a brand new Ford vehicle for the Music Educator of the Year is a great way to award the hard work of teachers and schools throughout our country.”
Ford has become synonymous with major philanthropic endeavors and partnering with iconic events and companies in order to bring maximum awareness of the many ways Ford gives back to the community, including being the title sponsors for such high-profile events as the Tom Joyner Cruise (Tom Joyner Fantastic Voyage), the Essence Music Festival in New Orleans, the Steve Harvey Neighborhood Awards in Atlanta any many others.
In addition, 25 semifinalists for the GRAMMY Foundation’s Music Educator Award had the chance to earn up to $6,000 for their school’s music program through Drive 4 UR School, a unique Ford vehicle test drive program at local dealerships. In November, Diamond Bar High School high school got a surprise visit from Ryan Seacrest, the radio and television host who is the GRAMMY Foundation’s Honorary Board Chair. Seacrest participated in the program with local students. The Drive 4 UR School program helps schools all over the country go further by raising money to support extracurricular activities, including music. Since it was launched in 2007, the program has raised nearly $25 million for schools throughout the U.S.
“Words cannot describe how thrilled I am to receive this honor. I want to thank Ford not just for awarding me an awesome car but also for their support of the GRAMMY Foundation and music programs in schools.” Said Jared Cassedy. “Their investment in teachers and students throughout the nation is to be commended.”
Ford Motor Company also is presenting sponsor of the Sixth annual GRAMMY In The Schools Live! — A Celebration of Music & Education, presented by Ford Motor Company. The event took place Wednesday, February 4th at Club Nokia and featured performances from GRAMMY® nominee Hunter Hayes and high school singers and instrumentalists from around the U.S. who participated in the GRAMMY Week GRAMMY Camp — Jazz Session.
For more information on the Ford Motor Company Fund and the GRAMMY Foundation visit
www.community.ford.com and www.grammyintheschools.com