Eight O’Clock® Coffee Fuels Much-Needed Transformation at Queens High School

Eight O’Clock® Coffee Fuels Much-Needed Transformation at Queens High School

Nearly 900 students at August Martin High School to benefit from Eight O’Clock Coffee’s partnership with nonprofit Publicolor
Wednesday, March 5, 2014 - 5:40pm

CAMPAIGN: EducationAd

CONTENT: Press Release

March 5, 2014 /3BL Media/ - Publicolor’s mission is to counter New York City’s alarming low graduation rate by engaging disconnected and under-achieving students, ages 13-24, in their education through a continuum of design-based programs and academic support. Unique to Publicolor—and central to its mission—is the beautification and revitalization of public and civic spaces through the hard work of the students and the power of paint, color, and design, and collaborations that engage students and the community as a whole. Today, Publicolor celebrated the generous backing from Eight O’Clock® Coffee, America’s original gourmet coffee, which provides support for the organization’s ongoing efforts to empower students.

Through CBS EcoMedia’s EducationAd program, Eight O’Clock Coffee is helping with the revitalization of August Martin High School in South Jamaica, Queens, which will impact 893 students.

This morning, a special ribbon cutting ceremony at August Martin High School celebrated the innovative partnership. Eight O’Clock Coffee representatives enjoyed a tour of the school and then chatted with Publicolor students over breakfast.

Mike Scalera, manager of sales & category insights of Eight O’Clock Coffee then spoke to the Publicolor students about the importance of education and focusing on a career path. Scalera applauded the students for their commitment and hard work through Publicolor. Other notable guests attended include: Gillian Smith, Principal, August Martin High School; Alisa Jacoby, Director of Marketing, Eight O’Clock Coffee; Michael Scalera, Manager, Sales and Category Insights, Eight O’Clock Coffee; Dan Rodrigues, Senior Vice President, Sales and Business Development, EcoMedia; Ruth Lande Shuman, Founder and President of Publicolor.  

"Having just completed a redesign of our own, the team at Eight O'Clock Coffee understands the positive benefits reaped from a "refresh," and how motivating and empowering it can be,” said Alisa Jacoby, director of marketing of Eight O'Clock Coffee. “We are excited to partner with Publicolor and EcoMedia to help the August Martin High School, in South Jamaica, as they undergo a refresh of their own. As America's original gourmet coffee brand, we are just as passionate about giving back to our local community as we are about our coffee, so we are thrilled to be impacting more than 900 students through this community service initiative."

"We are excited about our partnership with Eight O'Clock Coffee and the opportunity to revitalize August Martin High School affecting nearly 900 students,” said Ruth Lande Shuman, Founder and President of Publicolor. “We want to thank Eight O'Clock Coffee for their enthusiasm for our mission and for their contribution."

The generous support to Publicolor was part of Eight O’Clock Coffee’s EducationAd advertising on CBS, a program which enables advertisers to support community projects in underserved communities across the country.

"Eight O’Clock Coffee’s support will empower disaffected students to reach their full potential,” said Paul Polizzotto, President and Founder of CBS EcoMedia Inc. “The site transformation will change students’ attitudes and behavior, encouraging them to take pride and ownership of their community while teaching them essential skills that will prepare them for the workforce.”

“Publicolor has allowed our students to redefine their community at a time when many had given up on August Martin High School,” Gillian Smith, Principal, August Martin High School. “The school community not only needed to be revived through color, we also needed to revive our students.  As they walk through the halls they know that students were involved in the process of deciding the colors and directly involved in painting. They are taking ownership of their community space as well as having a great deal of pride in their accomplishment. We have also begun to have an afterschool presence in the building. One of the sweetest sounds in a school building is children participating by choice after the school day is over.”



About Eight O’Clock® Coffee
Eight O’Clock Coffee, America’s original gourmet coffee brewed from craft and passion, has been delighting coffee lovers for more than 150 years and was named one of ‘America’s Greatest Brands’ in 2010. Best known for their #1-selling whole bean coffee in grocery, Eight O’Clock Coffee offers a full line of gourmet coffee varieties in ground and whole bean form as well as K-Cup® packs for Keurig® brewers. Eight O’Clock Coffee is headquartered in Montvale, NJ, roasted and packaged in Landover, Maryland and available at most U.S. retailers where groceries are sold. Eight O’Clock is part of the Tata Global Beverages family of brands. For more information, visit www.eightoclock.com.

About Publicolor
Publicolor was founded in 1996 by Ruth Lande Shuman with the mission to counter our inner- city public schools’ alarming dropout rate by engaging young people in their education through a continuum of design- based programs and academic support. It directly addresses two of the root causes of poverty in America: the under-education of inner-city public school students and their lack of preparedness for the workforce. To date Ruth and Publicolor have transformed 160 struggling school buildings, 16 playgrounds and 191 community facilities in New York.

Some statistics about Publicolor:

  • 100% of Publicolor students stayed in school last year.
  • 100% of Publicolor 8th grade students progressed to 9th grade and 100% of 9th grade students advanced to 10th grade, these are indicators of success in high school.
  • 85% of Publicolor students graduated high school last year compared with 64.7% of students citywide with comparable socio-economic backgrounds.
  • 89% - Publicolor high school graduates continue their education through post-secondary options (4-year colleges, vocational schools, or military schools). Comparatively, only 47% of students with similar socio-economic backgrounds continue their education after high school. 
  • 80% - Publicolor students' college freshman to sophomore retention rate. Nationwide, this rate for first-generation college students is 35%. 
  • 100% of high school graduates in need of assistance to fill the gap between financial aid and the real cost of college receive a scholarship from Publicolor. 

For more information, please visit www.publicolor.org.

About Ruth Lande Shuman
A dynamic and passionate innovator, Ruth Lande Shuman is an award-winning industrial designer and Founder/President of Publicolor. Ruth has been deeply committed to community-based volunteer work for over thirty years, most notably as founding trustee of the Big Apple Circus, where she now serves as Trustee Emerita. She was also a board member of the Wiltwyck school’s union-free school, a board member of the Rowena Reed Kostellow Fund at Pratt Institute, and the Mayor’s representative to the board of the Museum of Art & Design in New York City. Ruth founded Publicolor in 1996 to use color, collaboration, design, and the discipline of the commercial painting to engage at-risk students in their education, targeting the most underserved communities, most underperforming schools and most seriously disadvantaged middle and high school students. Ruth currently runs a colorful Midtown, NY office of 33 employees who believe that Publicolor not only transforms buildings, they transform lives.

About CBS EcoMedia Inc.
At EcoMedia, we’re propelled by the desire to create positive social change; that’s been our mission since we founded the company in 2002.  In 2010, after successfully partnering with CBS on a wide range of environmental projects, EcoMedia became the newest addition to the CBS Corporation portfolio, exponentially scaling our reach across television, radio, interactive, publishing and outdoor media. 

Through our patent-pending EcoAd, WellnessAd and EducationAd programs, an innovative twist on traditional advertising, advertisers are able to support much-needed local projects which in turn creates jobs, saves taxpayer money and improves the quality of life in communities nationwide.  In the process, we’re fundamentally altering the advertising landscape, elevating the ordinary, traditional commercial – and media, in general – into a catalyst for tangible, quantifiable social change.  Please visit ecomediacbs.com, like us at facebook.com/EcoMediaCBS or follow us at Twitter.com/EcoMediaCBS


By participating in EcoMedia’s EcoAd, WellnessAd and EducationAd advertising programs, EcoMedia’s advertisers agree to provide funding for projects we believe will have a beneficial effect upon the environment, health and/or education within local communities.  EcoMedia’s advertising programs are not certification programs nor are the EcoAd, WellnessAd or EducationAd logos seals of approval. EcoMedia does not in any way certify, endorse or make any representations about EcoMedia program advertisers, their products or services.


CBS EcoMedia
Lindsay Brown
Director of Communications

CATEGORY: Education