BEMIDJI -- Bemidji High School students presented a viral video to members of the Bemidji School Board on Monday night during their regular meeting.
A University of Minnesota grant aimed at encouraging breakfast consumption awarded the high school $5,000 for a breakfast program which will provide lunch tables and more serving areas. The grant also provided a $2,000 budget to market the program to students which is what led to the video, which can be viewed here.
Marleen Webb, food service coordinator for Bemidji Area Schools, said the grant will offer a second chance breakfast for students who are on the go.
"This was to provide other opportunities besides the early morning breakfast," she said.
Brian Stefanich, principal at the high school, said only 13 percent of students eat breakfast at the school and the administration wanted to increase that number. With the help of the grant and the video the school hopes to get the word out to students regarding the price and availability of breakfast.
"Having that breakfast to go where it's a grab and go after first hour, the intent is that our students will have a good breakfast, they'll be more energized, and hopefully do better in school," Stefanich said.
With the $2,000 marketing portion of the grant the high school was able to hire Blueprint Marketing to produce a video to market the program to students. The five-minute-long video produced by the marketing team with the help of BHS students follows multiple students through the school while other students dressed in the attire of different high school clubs and sports dance in the hallways. The video ends in the gymnasium with "JacK," the school mascot, eating a healthy breakfast.
Hailee Todavich, a senior at BHS and one of the students who helped produce the video, said the filming of the video took place on the last day of school and included every club and activity at BHS.
"It got kids involved who aren't even in activities or not really involved in school," Todavich said.
Within 36 hours of being put up on the internet the video received more than 8,000 views.
John Smyth, another senior who was involved in the planning of the video, said many students were doubtful of how well the video would go.
"I think they were the people that were shocked the most," he said.
Head cook Margene Parkos said she has received compliments from community members regarding the video.
"It turned out fantastic; I am so proud of these kids."