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TEEN AMBASSADOR PROGRAM

There is always an opportunity for kindness

Teen Ambassador Program

The Teen Ambassador program is a partnership between the SafeLIGHT Foundation, selected area schools and law enforcement.  Participants in the program are selected by these entities.

There are nearly 1.3 million accidents involving teen drivers, making it the number one killer of teens in America. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2019, crashes involving teen drivers killed 2,042 people. To address this critical issue, the SafeLIGHT Foundation has developed a teen driving program, “Teen Ambassador,” which is intended to provide continuing safe driving education to new teens who have received their drivers' licenses.

The Teen Ambassador program is a full year-long program where participants are required to complete simple steps and comply with certain rules in order to graduate from the program successfully.  Each participant must sign a driving agreement and adhere to the SafeLIGHT Foundation’s rules and regulations on safe driving behavior.  Additionally, participants must use a small GPS-enabled device that is plugged into the car’s diagnostic port while driving. This device tracks the participant’s driving behavior, including car speed, location, acceleration, etc.  This program generates weekly online reports which the SafeLIGHT Foundation will use to monitor the participant’s adherence to the rules of the road.  If the report reveals abuse from the participant, he or she receives a warning.  If other abuses are identified in any future report, the participant is dismissed from the Teen Ambassador program.

We ask that each teen serve as a Traffic Safety Ambassador within their high school community by not only developing and practicing good driving skills, but by sharing and encouraging others in their schools to do the same.

In connection with the Teen Ambassador program, the SafeLIGHT Foundation:

  • Collaborates with law enforcement and high schools to provide lectures on traffic safety;

  • Provides scholarships for safe teen drivers who complete the Teen Ambassador program;

  • Works with schools to create safe driving seminars;

  • Works with local officials to develop and advocate for policies and legislation to minimize the effects of road rage;

  • Partners with one or more driving schools to help pay the tuition of driving lessons for low-income students;

  • Creates awareness campaigns with the Teen Ambassadors focusing on seasonal events (e.g. prom season and back to school); and

  • Provides opportunities for the Teen Ambassadors to participate in events and programs associated with driving, such as the Chicago Auto Show Gala.

Teen Ambassador Program Eligibility

Scholarships are offered to graduates of the Teen Ambassador  program who pursue educational degrees at any four-year colleges or universities. Accordingly, to be eligible for a Teen Ambassador program scholarship, an individual must first have satisfied and completed all requirements of the Teen Ambassador program.  The completion requirements are:

 

  1. Be a teenager who has received his or her driver’s license;

  2. Has a clean driving record at the end of the program;

  3. Has a tracking device at all times while driving; 

  4. Has served as a Traffic Safety Ambassador in his or her high school community; and

  5. Has passed the SafeLIGHT Foundation’s traffic safety examination in conjunction with the Illinois Secretary of State’s Office.

An individual will not be eligible for the Teen Program if he or she:

  1. Has received a moving violation, red light violation, or has been ticketed for driving under the influence;

  2. Has caused a traffic accident;

  3. Has been arrested or has outstanding warrants;

  4. Fails to maintain a grade point average of 2.8 or higher;

  5. Is on academic probation; or

  6. Submits false information.