Going the extra mile

BISMARCK, N.D. - A Bismarck High student has gone the extra mile to get an important message out to her peers.

Sydney Helgeson wanted to be a gateway to prevent teens from distracted driving.

"Getting my driver's license at a young age of 15, I just realized how big of an issue it was because when other people are on their phones it puts you in danger of everyone on the roads," she said.

Sydney has created ads for social media platforms, reaching about 4,000 students in person.

"The value in working with Sydney and people like Sydney is that they are conducting peer education so they are interacting with their peer groups to spread the word on a topic, and the value of peer education is groups tend to listen to their peers and adapt the behavior of their peers," said Karin Mongeon, safety division director at the North Dakota Department of Transportation.

Her mom says she's always been passionate about everything she does.

"The fact that she's been a good example, she helped me to not text and drive,” said Trish Helgeson.

Sydney says it's important to find one thing you're passionate about and help make a difference in your community.

Sydney will attend the University of Alabama on scholarships from the Miss North Dakota's Outstanding Teen award and NDDOT campaigns.