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U.S. Department of State

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U.S. Department of State
Office of the Spokesman
Press Statement

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Media Note
November 28, 2000

Digital Diplomacy Award Winner Announced

The Department of State is pleased to announce its selection of "An End to World Hunger: Hope for the Future," http://library.thinkquest.org/C002291/intro.htm as the winner of its Digital Diplomacy Award, the first educational award ever created by the State Department for the public. The award recognizes the student-created ThinkQuest website that best teaches others about the importance of international affairs and diplomacy.

An End to World Hunger was created by a team of three students - from the United States, Hong Kong, and the United Kingdom - who worked together to develop an educational website that focuses on the plight of world hunger. Their website, which also won a ThinkQuest 2000 Internet Challenge Honorable Mention award, was chosen from 725 entries submitted by students from 85 countries.

ThinkQuest is one of the fastest-growing, not-for-profit, Internet-based education programs in the world. The Digital Diplomacy Award was specially created for the ThinkQuest Internet Challenge, a contest that encourages students and educators to join together to build high-quality, educational websites on a variety of topics in five categories: Arts & Literature; Science & Mathematics; Social Sciences; Sports & Health; and Interdisciplinary. More than 4,000 student-created websites are made freely available to millions of people around the globe, as learning tools, at www.thinkquest.org

Each student team member of the winning Digital Diplomacy Award team will receive a $2,000 scholarship, and the winning coaches and schools will each receive a $500 cash award. The State Department is also sponsoring a trip to Washington, DC, in January 2001, where the Digital Diplomacy Award winners will receive a private tour of the State Department facilities, meet with key officials, and participate in a special award presentation ceremony.

Secretary of State Albright has said, "We want to encourage students to take an active interest in the world around them." The Secretary has a keen interest in our young people, and she recognizes the value of the Internet as a means to communicate policies and how foreign affairs is important to daily lives. The U.S. State Department Digital Diplomacy Award, in concert with the ThinkQuest competition, provides an opportunity for students to learn about American diplomacy while developing essential skills for future success such as technology proficiency, collaboration, and project and time management.

A team of State Department judges chose the winning team from six finalists. The judges included Under Secretary for Management Bonnie Cohen; Assistant Secretary for Intelligence and Research J. Stapleton Roy; the Bureau of Public Affairs' Webmaster Anita Stockman; and the Webmaster for the Geographic Learning Site, the backbone of www.state.gov's student site, Dan Kiser.

"On behalf of all the ThinkQuest 2000 Internet Challenge participants, we thank the U.S. State Department for their special Digital Diplomacy Award," added Dr. Terry Rogers, president and chief executive officer of Advanced Network &Services, the non-profit company that founded ThinkQuest. "The ThinkQuest programs encourage teenagers to get involved and serve as 'young ambassadors' by working with their peers, from different countries and cultures, to design these amazing Web sites on relevant world topics."

The winning site will be posted to the State Department's student site in early 2001.

Contacts:

Janice Kiser
US State Department
202-647-8207
kiserje@state.gov

Andrea V. Papa
ThinkQuest
914-765-1134
andrea@thinkquest.org

[end of document]

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