Local car dealer pushes for perfect attendance

Terry Cullen Chevrolet, in Jonesboro –– along with several other metro-area Chevy dealerships –– is encouraging seniors who attend Jonesboro and Mt. Zion high schools to strive for perfection this year.

The initiative is being pushed through a program called, “Chevy Drive for Perfection,” which was developed to encourage seniors to maintain perfect attendance. Terry Cullen, owner of Terry Cullen Chevrolet, said the initiative kicked off last year as a pilot program, and was part of Chevy’s effort to reconnect with customers.

“Chevy has made a significant effort to do more grassroots programs,” said Cullen. “This is one of the ways for us to reconnect with our customers, and give back to the community.”

He added that his dealership presented a check for $3,250 to Mt. Zion High School, earlier this month, for the school’s participation in the program last year.

“Staff members from the school were ecstatic to receive the check,” he said, “And I was happy to give it to them.” He added that a check in the same amount will be presented to Jonesboro High School, on Tuesday, Aug. 30.

When Cullen was asked why he only chose two high schools out of the nine in the district, he said the program came with some stipulations, and he was only able two pick two schools. His reason for picking Jonesboro High School and Mt. Zion High School, he said, was simply because both schools are in close proximity to his dealership.

Cullen said funds accumulated to support the program are based on the number of test drives given to customers, on behalf of the schools. He said for every person who comes into his dealership to test drive a car, $50 is donated to one of the schools. The next test-drive period will be from March 4, 2012, through April 4, 2012.

“The max for the number of test drives can only go up to $4,500, however; there will be other incentives we offer to students,” said Cullen.

Those incentives, he added, include a large rally at Turner Field in Atlanta, hosted by Chevy dealerships, sometime in May. The rally will culminate the “Chevy Drive for Perfection” program’s recognition of the students’ efforts to achieve perfect attendance for the 2011-2012 school year.

Cullen said, during the rally, one “lucky” student will have a chance to win a Chevy Cruise. In order for students –– seniors –– to participate in the drawing for the car, said Cullen, they will have to have achieved a 98-percent attendance mark by the time of the event.

“The schools will be responsible for monitoring the students’ attendance,” he said, adding that, on the day of the rally, students will have to provide proof of their attendance records for the school year.