Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt Announces Winner of K-12 Doodle 4 Google Design Contest and Launches Exhibition

May 20, 2009
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Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum will present the exhibition “Doodle 4 Google: What I Wish for the World” from May 21 through July 5 in the Target National Design Education Center. The exhibition features the winning designs from the 2009 Doodle 4 Google competition for K-12 students from around the country and includes educational programs for teachers and students focusing on the problem-solving nature of the design process.

“Doodle 4 Google: What I Wish for the World,” a partnership between Cooper-Hewitt and Google Inc., presents the 39 designs selected among 28,000 entries submitted by K–12 students from all 50 states in Google’s annual contest. Inspired by the theme “What I Wish for the World,” children from across the United States were challenged to think like designers and use Google’s iconic logo as a springboard to convey their message. The submissions represent a vast array of wishes, from environmental conservation to improvements in housing, health and education. Student submissions were judged on artistic merit, creativity, theme communication and appropriateness of the supporting statement. A panel of independent judges and representatives from Google and Cooper-Hewitt selected the top doodles across grade groups, and the public voted online for the four National Finalist designs. Nearly 6 million votes were cast online from May 11-18.  

Christin Engelberth, a 6th-grade student from Bernard A. Harris Junior High School in San Antonio, was named the national winner of the 2009 Doodle 4 Google competition. The winning doodle is titled “A New Beginning” and expresses Engelberth’s wish for a stable environment. Marissa Mayer, vice president of search products and user experience at Google Inc., announced the winner during a special ceremony at the museum to honor the regional winners. Engelberth’s doodle will appear on the Google home page in the United States Thursday, May 21. 

Courtesy of Google, the champion “doodler” will receive a $15,000 college scholarship and a $25,000 technology grant for the student’s school. Also, this year Google awarded a District Quality Participation Prize in the amount of $10,000 to the school district that had the greatest quality participation from its schools.  

“We were amazed by the level and range of creativity that the students invested in designing their doodles this year,” said Mayer. “It’s an incredible opportunity for the students not only to have their work appear on the Google home page but also have it exhibited at Cooper-Hewitt. Our cooperation with Cooper-Hewitt helped us attract many additional students to this year’s contest—they’ve been a great partner.”

“This exhibition, like all of Cooper-Hewitt’s educational programs, helps students, teachers and the public gain insight into the ways in which design shapes our lives every day,” said Caroline Payson, director of education at Cooper-Hewitt and one of the Doodle 4 Google judges.

Google began customizing its logo in 1999 to depict worldwide holidays, events and historic commemorations. The popular “doodles” on the Google home page are created by a team of Google designers, including the original “doodler,” Dennis Hwang.

About the Museum
Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution is the only museum in the nation devoted exclusively to historic and contemporary design. The museum presents compelling perspectives on the impact of design on daily life through active educational programs, exhibitions and publications. Founded in 1897 by Amy, Eleanor and Sarah Hewitt—granddaughters of industrialist Peter Cooper—as part of the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, the museum has been a branch of the Smithsonian since 1967.

The museum’s award-winning, nationally recognized education programs—including A City of Neighborhoods, Design Directions and Summer Design Institute—encourage students and teachers to see themselves as designers in their own right as they engage in the design process through active observation, discussion, strategies for visual communication and critique.

Cooper-Hewitt is located at 2 East 91st Street at Fifth Avenue in New York City. Hours are Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Sunday, noon to 6 p.m. General admission, $15; senior citizens and students ages 12 and older, $10. Cooper-Hewitt and Smithsonian members and children younger than age 12 are admitted free.  For further information, please call (212) 849-8300 or visit The museum is fully accessible. 

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