Chance the Rapper, pictured below, and Ludacris, pictured above, joined Comcast Corporation Executive Vice President David L. Cohen and Chicago city and school leaders last week at Alcott College Prep in Chicago to kick off the popular Get Schooled, Get Connected Spring Challenge, which is designed to help thousands of Chicago Public Schools (CPS) students prepare for college. David Cohen also announced key milestones from the Internet Essentials 2015 Report, including that from August 2011 through February 2015, more than 450,000 families have signed up for Internet Essentials, bringing the power of the Internet to 1.8 million low-income Americans. Plus, Internet Essentials has helped more Chicago metro area families connect to the power of the Internet than any other city in the country, with more than 50,000 families benefitting more than 200,000 low-income Chicagoans. That’s nearly 25 percent of the eligible population.
Internet Essentials and Get Schooled go hand-in-hand, as students need access to the Internet to participate in the spring challenge as the content is delivered through an online technology platform. Throughout the challenge, more than 112,000 CPS students will have access to free educational tools, resources and games – or "quests." The quests range from how to succeed in school and plan for your education to how to apply for college and financial aid resources.
Students may become eligible for prizes depending on the number of quests they complete and points they earn. Individual prizes include special celebrity VIP meet-and-greets, $1,000 Get Schooled scholarships, concert and sports tickets, laptops, athletic wear and gaming systems. The schools with the most student points will receive support from Internet Essentials and the CPS-affiliated Children’s First Fund to enhance their classrooms and school technology.
In January, Internet Essentials provided $100,000 in support for school foundations and community-based organizations, whose participants earned the most points during the inaugural three-month challenge. Over the past 18 months, Internet Essentials has provided more than $200,000 in support throughout the Chicago region.
At the event, Chance the Rapper said, "Having home Internet access can transform a young person’s life, because it opens an entire world to special programs like the Get Schooled, Get Connected Challenge. One student and one family at a time, this program will help close the digital divide by engaging and educating students throughout Chicago."
Ludacris added, "Students need Internet access to succeed in school, and families need it to succeed economically. I went to high school in this area, so I know first-hand how important it is for students and families to have Internet access at home."
You can watch news coverage of the event here and check out photos in the gallery on the upper right of this page.