Grambling State University student Corban Bell, a senior double major in accounting and economics has a lot to smile about, as he is the winner of the Toyota Green Initiative Contest 2012-2013.
“I’m extremely thankful. It was a blessing to be able to participate and even more so to be able to win the grand prize,” said Bell, a California native.
He is the winner of a one-year lease on a Toyota Prius, plus $1,200 for fuel and insurance.
Bell, 22, entered the contest after attending the United Negro College Fund and Environmental Protection Agency conference on sustainability with a fellow student. From there he entered a blueprint and was selected to represent GSU among the other 27 university participants, including qualifying into the final round against Howard University.
Notified last week about his achievement, Bell said that students were asked to cast their vote on www.toyotagreen.com and his prize would help him greatly as he prepares to enter the work force upon graduation, May 10.
“As I begin my career, having a fuel efficient, reliable source of transportation is huge. It is nothing shirt of a blessing. The fact that it is environmentally friendly adds a certain feel good factor,” said Bell.
Not only does Bell receive a prize, but also the university with the funding of a tree garden worth $5,000. Plans on when the tree garden will be done are unofficial, but the purÃ©e planting ceremony will take place in the fall. Currently, the university is performing an $800,000 beautification project.
In early April, Bell completed his beautification efforts in successfully authoring a bill, entitled, “99 cent bill,” that would establish a student assessed fee of $1, for both the spring and fall semester.
Early this month, students voted for “yes” for the assessed fee to begin a recycling program on campus, making it the first university in northern Louisiana with a functioning recycling system.