Coca-Cola Uncaps a World of Possibilities for the Next Generation with Exclusive Apprenticeship Experiences

Mon Jan 28, 2013 9:00am EST

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Magic Johnson, Common and Debra Lee Brought on as"Pay It Forward" Celebrity
History Makers

Coca-Cola Invites America to Join the Movement and Give to UNCF
ATLANTA--(Business Wire)--
NBA legend and business mogul Earvin "Magic" Johnson, multi-Grammy Award-winning
musician, actor and philanthropist Common, and Black Entertainment Television
(BET) chairman and CEO Debra Lee join forces with Coca-Cola this month in a
movement to uplift and pay it forward to the next generation.
NBA legend and business mogul Earvin "Magic" Johnson, Black Entertainment
Television (BET) chairman and CEO Debra Lee and multi-Grammy Award-winning
musician, actor and philanthropist Common join Coca-Cola as celebrity mentors
for the second year of its signature "Pay It Forward" program. They will provide
four lucky young people the opportunity to shadow them and their teams during
week-long apprenticeship experiences this summer, compliments of My Coke
Rewards. (Photo: Business Wire)

Kicking off the second year of its signature program, "Coca-Cola Pay it
Forward," the world`s most recognized brand enlists the help of some of today`s
leading African American history makers to offer exciting apprenticeship
experiences to aspiring youth. Magic Johnson, Common and Debra Lee will serve as
mentors, giving four lucky young people the opportunity to shadow them and their
teams for a week during the summer. The four apprenticeship experiences will
focus on: business (Johnson); music and community (Common); and
media/entertainment (Lee). Expanding this year`s program offering, the Company
has partnered with UNCF (United Negro College Fund), the country`s largest
minority education organization, for a text-to-donate program. 

"I have and always will remain committed to uplifting the urban community in my
business and nonprofit endeavors, and that makes the Coca-Cola `Pay It Forward`
program a perfect fit," said Johnson. "There is no better way to empower a
community than to arm its youth with the necessary skills to succeed." 

"Coca-Cola`s `Pay It Forward` program is a movement to uplift the next
generation," said Lauventria Robinson, vice president, Multicultural Marketing,
Coca-Cola North America Group. "It uncaps a world of possibilities for today`s
young people by offering once-in-a-lifetime apprenticeship experiences that only
Coca-Cola can provide. `Pay It Forward` inspires each of us to take an active
role in cultivating and empowering tomorrow`s leaders." 

Parents, relatives, friends, mentors and members of the community can go to My
Coke Rewards ( now through March 2 to
nominate an aspiring young person for the exclusive "Pay It Forward"
apprenticeship experiences. You must be 16 years of age or older to nominate
somebody and the apprenticeship experiences are available for young people
between the ages of 16-21 (as of May 1, 2013). You can nominate up to five
people and you are automatically entered for a chance to win a $5,000
sweepstakes with each nomination. Eligible youth are also invited to nominate

Join the Coca-Cola Pay It Forward Movement

Coca-Cola invites African Americans across the country to join Johnson, Common
and Lee in its national movement to pay it forward to the next generation by
helping them achieve their education and career aspirations. The Company
suggests: nominating an eligible young person for the "Pay It Forward" program;
becoming a mentor; taking a teen to work; and/or giving to an academic
scholarship group such as UNCF, the nation`s most successful African American
scholarship organization. Share ways you are paying it forward and join the
conversation on Twitter, using the hashtag #CokePayItForward. 

Pay It Forward with UNCF Text Donations

Coca-Cola has been a partner to UNCF for more than 40 years. Over the last six
years, the Company`s contributions to the organization have provided more than
$1.5 million in scholarships, impacting more than 300 students. 

Furthering its commitment to the "Pay It Forward" movement, Coca-Cola has
partnered with UNCF this year to encourage donations for academic scholarships
to deserving students at historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs)
across the country. Join Coca-Cola now to donate $5 or $10 by texting "MIND" or
"UNCF" respectively to 357357. Message and data rates may apply. Donors must be
18 years of age or older. Terms can be found at 

About The Coca-Cola Company

The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world's largest beverage company,
refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by
Coca-Cola, the world's most valuable brand, our Company's portfolio features 15
billion-dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero,
vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Georgia and Del Valle. Globally, we
are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and
juices and juice drinks. Through the world's largest beverage distribution
system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of
1.8 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable
communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental
footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work
environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the
communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among
the world's top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system associates.
For more information, visit Coca-Cola Journeyat, follow
us on Twitter at or check out our blog, Coca-Cola
Unbottled, at 

About UNCF

UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation's largest and most effective
minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation,
UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at over 900 colleges and universities
across the country. UNCF supports education through scholarships and other
programs, by supporting its 38 member colleges and universities, and by
advocating for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF
administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and
fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development
programs. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and
universities are highly effective, awarding 20 percent of African American
baccalaureate degrees. The UNCF logo features the torch of leadership in
education and its widely recognized motto, "A mind is a terrible thing to
waste." Learn more at

Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available:

Coca-Cola Refreshments
Melina Baetti, 404-676-1533
PRecise Communications
Tracey Bowen, 404-983-3727

Copyright Business Wire 2013

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