RIDGEFIELD PARK, N.J. -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Samsung today announced the top five finalists in its nationwide Solve for Tomorrow contest. The contest is part of Samsung’s Hope for Children initiative, which provides tools and technologies that empower young people to learn and collaborate to improve our communities. Competing for $1 million in technology awards, more than 1,100 schools from across the country responded to the question: “How can science or math help improve the environment in your community?”

The results are in. Five finalists have been selected through a combination of public online voting and the review of a panel of expert judges. These finalists will be awarded $80,000 in technology prizes and representatives from these finalist schools will be flown in to New York City for participation in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Awards Ceremony at the Samsung Experience. At the ceremony a grand prize winner will be announced for the top award of $155,000 in technology prizes from Samsung, Microsoft, DirecTV, and the Adobe Foundation. The finalists are:

* Patchogue Medford High School, Medford, New York

* Kokhanok School, Kokhanok, Alaska

* South Shore Charter Public School, Norwell, Massachusetts

* West Salem High School, Salem, Oregon

* Wheeling High School, Wheeling, Illinois

Finalists’ videos can be seen at:

“It was exciting for all of us to watch the public rally behind their favorite schools for the last few weeks as they voted for their favorite video entries,” said David Steel, EVP of Strategy and Corporate Communications, Samsung Electronics America. Ten schools were previously selected for their production of short videos explaining how they used technology to help the environment in their community. During this public voting period hundreds of thousands of votes were cast in support of local schools.

“Our panel of expert judges was thoroughly impressed with the work of all of the schools – they had a difficult task,” said Steel. “All of the schools have done an impressive job of demonstrating their commitment to using technology and math and science to improve the environment in their communities.”

In addition to the public voting, Samsung’s panel of expert judges weighed in with their own assessments of the schools’ work. The Samsung Solve for Tomorrow judging panel included representatives from Samsung, Microsoft, the Adobe Foundation, the National Environmental Education Foundation, Communities in Schools, Great Schools, TWICE Magazine, USA Today Education, and Change the Equation.

Samsung’s own employee volunteers reached out to public schools across the United States to encourage participation in this national competition. Teachers were encouraged to work with their students to submit a short application essay that answered the question, “How can science or math help improve the environment in your community?” Samsung received more than 1,100 submissions from around the country and selected 50 finalists to participate in the next phase of the contest. The 50 finalists received video creation kits which including a Samsung laptop, camcorder and software from Adobe.

The grand prize winner will be announced at the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Awards Ceremony at the Samsung Experience in New York, NY on April 7, 2011. Additional information is available through the Samsung Facebook Solve tab at: