There was much excitement at Coginchaug Regional High School yesterday but no one was more excited than Cory Hassman. He had made it to the finals of Google’s national Doodle 4 Google logo design completion and to celebrate, Google representatives came to his school to present him with an award certificate at a special assembly.
Making it to the finals is a big achievement in itself. Google received more than 114,000 entries from across the country, of which only 250 state finalists were chosen in five different grade categories from Kindergarten to 12th grade.
Cory, 14, was selected as a winning finalist in the Grade 8-9 category. Other finalists from Connecticut were Alexander, 7, from Greenwich; Shivani, 10, from Stamford; Aryana, 12, from Groton, and Jenny, 18, from Milford. (Google doesn’t provide last names because of the ages of the winners.)
The first 250 Doodle finalists were selected by Google employees and guest judges, who this year included Katy Perry, singer; Jordin Sparks, singer and actress; Jeff “Swampy” Marsh, creator and executive producer of “Phineas and Ferb”; Mo Willems, creator of the Knufflebunny series; Holly Black, author of the Spiderwick Chronicles; and Tony DiTerlizzi, Illustrator of the Spiderwick Chronicles.
Judging was based on artistic merit, creativity and best use of the Google logo, and on how well the theme was expressed in the artwork and the supporting statement. This year’s theme was “If I could travel in time, I’d visit …”
Cory was chosen as the statewide winner. As one of the top 50 finalists from each state, Cory will be going to New York for a special event on May 17. That's when the finalists will find out who made it to the top five.
Each of the five finalists will walk home with a Wacom digital design tablet and a t-shirt with their logo design on it. The winner also gets a Google Chromebook computer. The four finalists will also receive a $5,000 scholarship but the top prize is even more impressive.
The national winner of Doodle 4 Google will receive a $30,000 college scholarship and Google will present the student’s school with a $50,000 technology grant to help establish a computer or technology program.
Who advances to the final round will be decided by popular vote. Online voting started May 2 and runs through May 10, so go to Google and click for Cory!