Public Voting Begins for Sixth Annual Adolescent Immunization Awareness Contest


Newark, NJ (March 19, 2018) – The Partnership for Maternal and Child Health of Northern New Jersey, in collaboration with the New Jersey Department of Health, today announced the finalists for the sixth annual Protect Me With 3+ immunization awareness contest. Artwork including five middle school posters, five high school posters and five high school videos is now showcased at, where public voting will begin on March 26th.

Public voting will take place for two weeks and is open to both adults and students. The public may vote once per day until the ballot is closed on April 8th at 11:59 PM EST. The top three posters and videos in each category will be presented at an awards ceremony to be held on April 29th.

In its sixth year, Protect Me With 3+ challenges New Jersey youth in middle and high school to raise awareness about the importance of adolescent immunizations: tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis (Tdap), human papillomavirus (HPV), meningococcal conjugate and flu vaccines. Last year, the contest had over 300 entries from students across New Jersey.

This year, the contest received more than 400 poster and video entries from middle school and high school students across the state. A total of 12 counties were represented including Monmouth, Middlesex, Atlantic, Mercer, Union, Camden, Cumberland, Hunterdon, Bergen, Essex, Morris, and Passaic.

“The severity of the flu this year is marked by an unfortunate number of fatalities among children, across the nation, as well as in New Jersey. The widespread flu outbreak highlights the critical importance of adolescents and children getting vaccinated,” explained Ilise Zimmerman, Executive Director of the Partnership for Maternal and Child Health of Northern New Jersey. “The Protect Me With 3+ poster and video contest provides an opportunity for children to learn more about highly contagious diseases, such as the flu, and how vaccines can protect against these diseases. Not only do participants learn how to prevent their own exposure to illnesses by getting vaccinated, they also inform their families and friends about public health in a creative fashion. By holding a public voting period, we hope to expand our audience and showcase the finalists who have delivered our health message most effectively.”

Teachers across New Jersey also incorporated the Protect Me With 3+ contest into their curriculums by making it a class project. “We would like to thank all of the teachers who encouraged their students to participate in the contest to learn about the importance of adolescent immunization,” said State Epidemiologist and Assistant Commissioner Dr. Tina Tan from the New Jersey Department of Health.

Prizes will be awarded to the top three entries in the video and poster categories. The winning creations will also be distributed during various statewide immunization awareness activities. Prizes for the classrooms with the most eligible submissions in each category will also be awarded.

The Protect Me With 3+ contest finalists include:

Middle School Poster Category:

  • Jenna Birney from Franklin Elementary School
  • Ava Butterline from Franklin Elementary School
  • Anjali Fernandes from Heritage Middle School
  • Austin Garay from Franklin Elementary School
  • Saif Shah from Franklin Elementary School

High School Poster Category:

  • Amy Chen from Scotch Plains Fanwood High School
  • Nicole Kye from Ridgewood High School
  • Vic Petroni from Mahwah High School
  • Anna Piekutowski from Scotch Plains Fanwood High School
  • Arya Sasne from West Windsor – Plainsboro High School South

Video Category:

  • Spencer Friedman from Marlboro High School
  • Kerry Harper from Henry Hudson Regional School
  • Nicole Hickey-Weber from Marlboro High School
  • Stuti Mohan from Middlesex County Academy for Allied Health and Biomedical Sciences
  • Priyal Shah from Middlesex County Academy for Allied Health and Biomedical Sciences

To vote, visit:

To view previous winners’ entries, visit:


About the Partnership

The Partnership for Maternal and Child Health of Northern New Jersey is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) corporation, licensed by the New Jersey Department of Health (DOH). Its mission is to improve the health of women, children, and families. The Partnership has more than 20 years of experience mounting community-based, consumer-friendly and culturally competent educational programs to parents, caregivers, pregnant women and individuals of child-bearing age. For more information visit,

To learn more about vaccinations, visit the New Jersey Department of Health’s website, visit: