LCJA Student Wins Idaho Doodle 4 Google

by Jon Dalrymple

Natasha DiBiase, a third grader at LCJA, helped Google representatives unveil an eight-foot wide rendering of her artwork at a special school assembly to declare her the Idaho state winner of the Internet search engine’s doodle contest.

Natasha and her family rescued their dog from a shelter and through a veterinarian brought it back to health. The experience inspired Natasha to become a vet when she grows up and was the idea behind her winning doodle.

Student's at LCJA cheer after the announcement was made that their schoolmate, Natasha DiBiase, had won the Doodle 4 Google contest for the State of Idaho.

COEUR D'ALENE, ID, May 1, 2013 - Representatives from the Google Corporation visited Lake City Junior Academy (LCJA) today, May 1, 2013, to announce one of the winners of its annual Doodle 4 Google art competition.  Natasha DiBiase, a third grader at LCJA, helped Google representatives unveil an eight-foot wide rendering of her artwork at a special school assembly to declare her the Idaho state winner of the Internet search engine’s doodle contest. 

“I was amazed when I found out I had won,” said Natasha, “They said to draw something about my best day ever, which will be when I become a veterinarian, because when I was a little girl my dog was very sick and we took her to the vet and she got better.  So I’d like to be a vet and help animals too.”

The Doodle 4 Google contest is a competition open to K-12 students of U.S. schools to create their own Google doodle.  A Google doodle is a stylized version of the search engine’s logo that appears on the web site to commemorate a special person, date in history or other theme to surprise and delight users of the Google web site.  This year’s theme for the Doodle 4 Google contest was “My Best Day Ever.” Chosen from a total of over 130,000 entries, each State’s winners represent the top doodles from this year's competition. 

“The whole class did this as an art project,” said Anita Roberts, Natasha’s teacher at LCJA. “The kids didn’t have a lot of time to get their pieces done before the deadline so I wasn’t sure if they would be very elaborate, but Natasha worked on hers until the very last day.  I was really impressed with her drawing, but I had no idea it would win.”

The national contest winners will be determined by whose artwork gets the most votes by Google users in the United States.   The winner will be announced at an event in New York later this month.

For her work, Natasha is receiving a trip to New York City for the final awards ceremony on May 22, 2013, a t-shirt with her doodle printed on it and her artwork will be featured in a special exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. 

If her artwork gets enough votes and wins the national contest, Natasha will win a $30,000 college scholarship and LCJA will receive a $50,000 grant towards the establishment of a computer lab or technology programming.

“It would be very exciting if Natasha’s work won the national competition,” says Ron Jacaban, principal of LCJA, “and a big blessing to the school to receive the technology grant, but mostly we are proud of her for doing her best and that she is developing a passion for serving others.”

The public is invited to vote online for the national winner on the Google web site at google.com/doodle4google.   Voters will be asked to select their favorite doodles, one from each age group, between May 1 and May 10, 2013.