UA Student Wins Project Yellow Light Scholarship

Jun 13, 2019

A University of Alabama student has some extra tuition money for the coming school year thanks to a public service announcement competition on distracted driving.

Marcus Marshall is a senior software engineering major at UA. He won this year's collegiate division of the Project Yellow Light scholarship competition. Students create PSAs encouraging their peers to break the habit of texting and driving.

Marshall says he was encouraged to enter the competition partly because it's something he considers personally important.

"I have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to doing that. When I’m riding with you, or if you’re riding with me, you’re going to get my full attention on the road. And I would like that same thing, whenever I’m riding with someone else. So I guess my own conviction about it was part of the reason why I wanted to express something in a video format too.”

Marshall's entry uses text, emoji and simple motion graphics to convey his message. He says a lot of PSAs he’s seen rely on bombast and shock value to get their message across , and he wanted to make something different.

“The main thing was just to make it really simple. I wanted to also make it relatable, too, so it’s not so much, you know, hit you in your face. It’s more so giving you the context of a text message.”

Marshall has earned a $5,000 scholarship for his winning entry. In addition, his video could be adapted into an Ad Council PSA and distributed to approximately 1600 TV stations nationwide.