The students of Barrington High School, a public school in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago, have accomplished many incredible things. Notable alumni from the high school include a rock star, reality television star, professional soccer player and many others. But it looks like BHS alumni aren't the only ones doing incredible things.
Students from BHS banded together to create an inspiring video that highlights the volunteer, philanthropic and fundraising efforts from students to make the community -- and world -- a much better place. The video was submitted to a national contest sponsored by pop-star Rihanna where the winner would receive an in-person visit from Rihanna. Of the 52 entries in the contest, Barrington High School was selected as the grand prize winner, which means that Rihanna is soon visiting Barrington High School.
"We saw the contest and thought it was a really good idea, especially because Barrington is so philanthropic," said Peter Chung, one of the participants and creators of the video in an interview with Barrington Patch. "It took about a month to put it together, but it was probably dozens of hours...it was a very tedious process."
The fundraising and volunteering efforts are highlighted throughout the entire video, which has already racked up more than 6,000 views on YouTube. Apparently, it wasn't much of a surprise to the students that they were selected as the grand prize winners. "I knew we had a really good chance, but it was definitely exciting because I knew the second we found out that Rihanna would visit the school that I would be the most likely candidate to conduct an interview if we were to arrange for that," said Katherine Goetze, who's featured in the beginning of the video that was created for the contest, according to a Barrington Patch interview.
The effort to court Rihanna started thanks to TV production teacher Jeff Doles, who said that he'd found out about the contest through MOXIE, an organization focused on improving high school journalism and media programs. Doles told the Daily Herald that the company occcassionally gives students tocikets to events and frequently holds competitions. For this completion, students were required to make a lip dub or video interpretation of Rihanna's song "Shine Bright Like a Diamond" with an emphasis on what the school is doing to give back to others.
"This was a unique opportunity for the kids to showcase their skills and make a difference," Doles said. "It's just great to see them get recognized."
Barrington High School is no stranger to lip dub contests. In 2010, Barrington High School students created a lip dub video of B.O.B's "Magic," which won the grand prize of a local television WGN's Lip Dub contest. The BHS Lip Dub video currently has more than 50,000 views on YouTube.
To see the viral video hits from BHS, click the videos below: