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Press Release -- February 12th, 2015
Source: Windstream

Windstream selects team of Pius X high school students as Smart Tomorrow video contest winners

Students win $20,000 and an additional $20,000 for the Pius X Foundation based on their winning vision of the connected future

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Windstream (NYSE:WIN, news, filings), a leading provider of advanced network communications, today announced that a team of five students from Pius X High School in Lincoln, Neb. has been selected as the first-ever Smart Tomorrow contest winners. Students Thomas Hanzl, Jacob Hotovy, Brody Rolfes, Andrew Shonka and Nick Korta were chosen for their video, titled Outside the Box, that demonstrated how connected technology will change the way we live in 2025.

Thirty-five students from four Lincoln high schools entered the contest, which challenged students to bring to life their vision of the connected future through short videos in the format of their choice. In Outside the Box, students demonstrated how connected technology could enable hands-free strollers, door-opening wrist scanners, and even moving objects with technology-controlled force.

“On behalf of everyone at Windstream, we want to thank all the students who participated and all the teachers, principals, school administrators and parents who encouraged and supported them,” said Sarah Day, Senior Vice President of Small Business and Consumer at Windstream. “We were impressed by all the submissions, and it was clear that the students took the time to research and think creatively about the topic. We congratulate the students of Pius X for their win, and hope every student that participated felt it was an experience that expanded their academic horizons.”

As the Smart Tomorrow video contest winners, Hanzl, Hotovy, Rolfes, Shonka and Korta will receive $20,000 to split evenly among themselves, as well as $20,000 for the Pius X Foundation to help fund student and school activities. The students, a group of three seniors and two juniors, will also receive a virtual learning session with a venture capitalist designed to provide feedback on the students’ video, offer career advice, and respond to questions they may have, made possible by mobile marketing technology company, MobileROI.

“Outside the Box demonstrated an innovative way of thinking about how connected technology will change everyday life,” said Puneet Mehta, co-founder and CEO of MobileROI. “We’re excited to arrange a mentoring session with the winning team and hope the experience will provide valuable guidance, no matter what academic and career paths the students choose to pursue.”

Windstream selected the winners with the help of fellow judges from Ovum, an analyst firm covering IT, telecoms and media, and Mehta. The panel judged submissions from Lincoln East, Lincoln Northeast, Lincoln Southwest, and Pius X high schools based on criteria that included creativity, originality and demonstration of the theme, among other factors.

“I am proud of the groups who put the extra time and energy into this contest,” said Pius X High School principal Tom Korta. “I believe they enjoyed the process and the opportunity to use their God-given talents to create a vision for the future.”

Windstream, a company with a long history of giving back to the communities it serves, plans to share the winning Smart Tomorrow video, Outside the Box, online at: Visit the site to view the video and learn more about how connected technology is poised to transform local communities across the country.

About Windstream

Windstream, a FORTUNE 500 and S&P 500 company, is a leading provider of advanced network communications and technology solutions, including cloud computing and managed services, to businesses nationwide. The company also offers broadband, phone and digital TV services to consumers primarily in rural areas. For more information, visit the company’s online newsroom at or follow on Twitter at @WindstreamNews.

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