NEWARK, Del.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sallie Mae, the nation’s saving, planning, and paying for college company, today announced that Temeka Easter, senior director of social media, has earned a 2017 Social Media Mover and Shaker Award from The Social Shake-Up Show. She is being honored for the innovative programs she developed with Dee-1, the former educator turned hip-hop artist, to educate high school students about financial responsibility, award scholarships, and help customers repay their private student loans.
Ms. Easter is a winner in the “Rabble Rouser” category, which recognizes influencers who defy conventional wisdom about where social media fits within a brand. A hip-hop artist and a bank seemed an unlikely partnership at first, but Ms. Easter crafted a campaign that showed how Dee-1’s messages, especially in “Sallie Mae Back,” the song he wrote to celebrate paying off his student loans, complemented the company’s mission to help students and families make college happen.
Under Ms. Easter’s leadership, Sallie Mae and Dee-1 have awarded more than $130,000 in scholarships and loan payments to students and customers across the country. The collaboration has produced several successful initiatives, including Dee-1’s “Knowledge for College” tour, during which Dee-1 and Sallie Mae visited high school students in five states, and a social media-based contest, “Dee-1’s #Pays2Repay Contest.” This contest celebrated successful student loan repayment habits, and five winners had their eligible Sallie Mae student loans paid off by the company.
“Some might not expect a bank and a hip-hop artist to align so easily, so credit to Temeka for cultivating our common ground for the benefit of students and customers,” said Martha Holler, senior vice president, Sallie Mae. “Her social media vision has significantly improved how Sallie Mae engages students with resources that help make college happen. I can think of no one more deserving of this award.”
The annual Mover and Shaker Awards highlight thought leadership in the use of social media. Ms. Easter joins an impressive group of social media professionals, including representatives from AT&T, Cisco, IBM, Intel, Southwest Airlines, Walgreens, and the Miami Heat, who will be honored in Atlanta on May 23 at the Social Shake-Up Show, presented by PR News and Social Media Today.
To learn more about the partnership with Dee-1, watch Sallie Mae’s YouTube channel. For more information about saving, planning, and paying for college, visit SallieMae.com or join the conversation at @SallieMae.
Sallie Mae (Nasdaq: SLM) is the nation’s saving, planning, and paying for college company. Whether college is a long way off or just around the corner, Sallie Mae offers products that promote responsible personal finance, including private education loans, Upromise rewards, scholarship search, college financial planning tools, and online retail banking. Learn more at SallieMae.com. Commonly known as Sallie Mae, SLM Corporation and its subsidiaries are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.