A teenage girl is crowned prom queen and starts dancing joyfully. But then she is faced with a choice -- should she start drinking alcohol or remain sober?
If she makes the wrong decision and tries to drive home intoxicated, she could suffer a terrible fate.
That's the scenario seen in a public service announcement created by Johann Ramirez and Eric Ruvalcaba, students at Summit High School.
Using a split screen, the video, called "Safe and Sober -- Left and Right," implores viewers to "think of what will be LEFT behind -- make the RIGHT decision."
Because of their artistry and their ability to convey a powerful and important message, Ramirez and Ruvalcaba were named the winners of the 2019 Be Smart -- Party Safe and Sober Campaign's PSA contest conducted by the Fontana Unified School District.
They were honored at the campaign kickoff event, a press conference at the John Piazza Center which spotlighted the efforts of video production students from high schools in Fontana on March 27. Their PSA can be seen at the Regency Fontana 8 Theater during the months of April and May (and can also be seen accompanying this article).
"Eric and I made this video because we want our friends to be celebrate prom by being safe and sober," Ramirez said. "We want to share our community stories through the medium of film while also setting a standard of high expectations for the Summit video production program."
"April is Alcohol Awareness Month and the Fontana community has joined to combat the issue of underage drinking and drug use as we head into prom and graduation season," said Michael Garcia, an organizer of the annual contest. "Together, we are kicking off a community wide campaign to keep our students safe and sober this celebration season."
Garcia said that this year, there were a total of 33 student submissions from the FUSD students, and "we were all impressed by the creativity and message displayed" in the PSAs.
Other 30-second PSAs that were honored in the top five were "My Boy" by Anthony Arciga, Summit; "Party Safe, Party Sober" by Alexander Covarrubias, Fontana A.B., Miller; "Mom … I'm Fine," by Kevin Garcia, Miller; and "Think or Drink," by Carolina Inzunza, Miller.
FUSD School Police Chief Martin Sissac said he hoped all students will heed the warnings issued by the video participants.
"Underage alcohol use kills more young people than all illegal drugs combined. This is a serious epidemic nationwide," said Sissac. "We are here today to try to reduce the prevalence of underage drinking in our community."
Excessive drinking is responsible for more than 4,300 deaths among underage youth each year, according to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependency.