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2018 'Don't Mess with Texas' Scholarship Contest Winners Announced


Contest rewards high school seniors for creative litter prevention in
their communities

Congratulations to three high school seniors selected as winners in the
2018 "Don't mess with Texas" scholarship contest. Dalton Shaw of W.W.
Samuell High School in Dallas was chosen as the grand prize winner and
received a $6,000 scholarship. Brittany Nation of Richland High School
in North Richland Hills and Andrew Wagner of St. Paul High School in
Shiner each received a $2,000 scholarship. The scholarships are
presented annually in partnership with Keep Texas Beautiful and
recognize the achievements of high school seniors who demonstrate a
leadership role in preventing litter in their schools and communities
while building awareness of the "Don't mess with Texas"
litter-prevention campaign. The 2018 scholarships were sponsored by
iHeartMedia and PunchDrunk Digital.

"We're excited to recognize these students with scholarships for their
proactive approach to preventing litter in Texas," said Becky Ozuna,
program administrator for TxDOT's "Don't mess with Texas" campaign.
"Their efforts will inspire others to join in keeping our state looking
clean and beautiful."

Grand prize winner Shaw created a fun and attention-grabbing visual
project at his high school consisting of brightly colored posters with
clever anti-litter messaging to encourage students to take pride in
their school. The posters were hung in high-traffic student areas
including the cafeteria, gym and bus stop to serve as a deterrent to
littering. Additionally, Dalton rallied his community to form a
volunteer group to clean up trash in areas around lakes, streams and
creeks to protect nature and wildlife. Dalton plans to attend Oklahoma
Baptist University to study mathematics and education.

Inspired by Earth Day, Nation wanted to keep the awareness going
year-round. She formed the Earth Day Leadership program in which she
recruited friends, family, fellow students and neighbors to host
clean-up events at five school campuses, three parks, numerous
neighborhoods and along Texas roadways. Nation also committed time to
speak to students about the importance of recycling and properly
disposing of trash. This led her to create a new movement called "Ten
Tuesdays" in which she encourages students to pick up 10 pieces of trash
on Tuesdays while walking home from school. Brittany plans to attend
Texas Tech University to study sociology and criminology.

Motivated by his dream of reaching the prestigious rank of Eagle Scout,
Wagner chose a project that would transform his community and keep the
city of Shiner true to its moniker as the "The Cleanest Little City in
Texas." After noticing two trash bins at his neighborhood park were
often overflowing, causing trash to blow out of the can, Andrew knew a
solution was needed. He devised a plan using donated community
resources, met with Shiner's city council and enlisted the help of the
city's parks department. He and seven other scouts worked to install
three new 32-gallon commercial trash receptacles at the park, along with
new picnic tables to further beautify the green space. Wagner plans to
attend the University of Texas at Austin to study biology.

"Don't mess with Texas" has been educating Texans about litter
prevention since 1986. The campaign is the signature initiative for
TxDOT's litter prevention initiatives which include Adopt-a-Highway, a
grassroots partnership with Keep Texas Beautiful and the community
outreach and cleanup event — the Don't Mess with Texas Trash-Off. For
additional information on "Don't mess with Texas," visit

For media inquiries, contact TxDOT Media Relations at
or (512) 463-8700.

The Texas Department of Transportation is responsible for maintaining
80,000 miles of road and for supporting aviation, rail, and public
transportation across the state. Through collaboration and leadership,
we deliver a safe, reliable, and integrated transportation system that
enables the movement of people and goods. Find out more at

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