TO CAST YOUR VOTE
Go to the website www.google.com/doodle4google and click on the “Vote Now” button. Then click on the tab labeled “Grades 7-9” and select “Region 7” to display Paige’s doodle. To vote, click the button “Vote for this doodle.” Voting ends May 13.
DAYTON, Tenn. — Dayton City School eighth-grader Paige Jordan’s artistic talents will be displayed on a stage viewed by millions worldwide.
Think of them as “Paige views.”
As an official, competitive Google “doodler,” Paige is one of 40 regional finalists headed for New York City this month for the “Doodle 4 Google” finals, a national competition to create artistic logos for Google’s homepage, according to school and Google officials.
Finalists, whose work will become the website’s homepage logo for a day, will vie for the most website votes to get a $15,000 college scholarship and a $25,000 technical grant for their school, officials said.
Paige, 14, and the youngest of six siblings, said the theme: “What I’d like to do someday ...” prompted her to think more of what she likes to do for others.
“It’s about helping out Third World countries,” she said of her design of the logo letters, g-o-o-g-l-e. “It really is something I always wanted to do because I like helping people.
“I wanted to make it like a picture of the things I knew they needed,” Paige said.
Her design will be Google’s homepage sometime later this month.
Now Paige, her mother Rhonda Cooper, and art teacher Nela Swiney will head for New York for a celebration and to learn doodle voting results. The finalists’ work will be displayed in the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Paige has promised, “We’re not going to sleep at all while we’re in New York,” said Cooper, smiling and clutching her daughter’s jacket.
Paige’s constant companion at Wednesday’s event, Erin Schiel, who dubbed herself “a celebrity friend,” described her friend’s accomplishments with a word: “Wow.”
Another Dayton City School student also was honored Wednesday.
Third-grader Cristine Moore was one of 400 state finalists in the nation, drawing praise from Google.
“I’m really, really proud of how far I got,” said Cristine, 9. “I’m really excited.”
She said she’ll compete again next year.
Google spokesman Ben Emmrich and Dayton City Schools Director Richard Fisher credited Swiney with fostering a successful art program and motivating her students.
“I just want to say, Ms. Swiney, you’re a wonderful teacher,” Fisher said.
Dayton Mayor Bob Vincent urged everyone in Rhea County and across the state to “get on the computer and vote.”
Voting continues through May 13, Google spokeswoman Kaili Holtermann told students, parents and teachers.
Ben Benton is a news reporter at the Chattanooga Times Free Press. He covers Southeast Tennessee and previously covered North Georgia education. Ben has worked at the Times Free Press since November 2005, first covering Bledsoe and Sequatchie counties and later adding Marion, Grundy and other counties in the northern and western edges of the region to his coverage. He was born and raised in Cleveland, Tenn., a graduate of Bradley Central High School. Benton ...