Our Planet Our Purpose

A view od Earth from space

An Extraordinary Opportunity for Your Child

The Ashoka organization has reached out to Edge on Science, inviting youth to submit their solution to an environmental challenge. Teams of at least two students (with the project lead being 14 to 18 years of age by August 1, 2020), get to choose their own challenge. And students younger than 14 may be on a team!
The deadline for submitting a proposal is May 14th at 11:59 (midnight) ET.

Twenty-five winning proposals will receive $1,000 seed funding and an all-expenses-paid trip to General Motors’ Detroit, Michigan, headquarters in July for the Changemaker Summit, a two-day immersive experience with mentorship, coaching, and skill building.

But that’s not all. Edge on Science founder, John Aviste, P.Eng. will be available to mentor teams. You may reach him at (315) 773-5673 or by e-mail: javiste@edgeonscience.com

The submission form seems to require that a student-led environmental project or organization has to have been in operation, for at least three months. According to Ashoka, this is not a requirement for submission.

“We are looking for projects that have had some initial traction — this could mean that they have done customer discovery, or simply have tested their idea. Their network would still be very helpful because the idea does not necessarily have to have had ground-breaking impact in 3 months, we just want to know that they have done more than just think of their solutions.”
-Ashoka Changemaker administrative team

The interesting thing is that, proposals are published for all to see. Here’s what Nell Hellman, of Ashoka, says, “The reason behind publishing submissions, before winners are selected, is we want participants to be able to view other submissions and leave comments on each other’s entries. It helps build a sense of community between participants and in some cases even leads to collaboration between participants for further challenges. Additionally, participants can share the link to their submissions with their networks and/or social contacts. We don’t want the focus to be just on winning, we want everyone to benefit from participating.”

Take a look at the projects and proposals already submitted and ask your child, “When you think of our planet, what gets you fired up? What environmental problem would you take on? And why are you so passionate about it? Who do you want on your team and why?”

Your child might be a budding scientist or engineer, but maybe not. It does not matter. Action, backed up with passion matters. Your child must consider the skills, knowledge and resources needed to realize their idea and then bring it all together. That’s why a team approach is the way to go here, even if it begins with a team of two.

So there you have it! Here is the direct link to the Changemaker Challenge: Our Planet Our Purpose!