R&B star Tyrese Gibson joins Coca-Cola to help inspire and empower teens to strive for their highest potential through the 2016 Coca-Cola Pay It Forward program.
Up to 25 students will a $5,000 scholarship and a trip to the Coca-Cola Pay It Forward Academy in Atlanta. Now through March 31, parents, relatives, friends and mentors can nominate an aspiring teen for the program at www.coke.com/payitforward.
A longtime friend of Coca-Cola, Gibson got his first big break when he serenaded fans with the “Always Coca-Cola” theme song more than 20 years ago in a popular 1995 commercial.
“I have long recognized the importance of helping young people reach out to grab their dreams,” said the six-time Grammy-nominated singer, author, philanthropist and film star said. “Returning to Coca-Cola, the place where I got my start, brings my story full circle and offers me another opportunity to help inspire, motivate and give back to our youth. I’ve learned it’s not lonely at the top if you help someone else get there."
Gibson's foundation recently awarded a $50,000 scholarship to a Compton teen. His foundation, #TheLoveCircle, focuses on empowering youth.
"The Coca-Cola Company has had a long relationship with Tyrese, and he’s a part of our family,” said Racquel Harris Mason, vice president, Coca-Cola and Coke Zero brands, Coca-Cola North America. “His support of education and passion for mentoring truly reflects the goals of the Coca-Cola Pay It Forward program. We’re honored to partner with him as we work to empower the next generation.”
The Coca-Cola Pay It Forward program, now in its fifth year, is open to high school students, grades 9-12 (nominees must be 13 years old by June 3), and the moms/guardians who love and support their academic and philanthropic endeavors. Nominators must be 13 years of age or older. Eligible high school teens may also nominate themselves.
Potential winners will be selected and notified on or around June 20. Each winning student will receive a $5,000 scholarship to assist with his/her pursuit of higher education and a three-day trip to the Coca-Cola Pay It Forward Academy. Nominations must be received by March 31.