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Project:Connect – Summer Youth Programming Competition


An opportunity and a challenge

The web is an open ended laboratory for connected learning and creating. It has made possible anywhere-anytime learning for all generations, and especially for youth, in ways previously unimaginable. It promotes interest driven learning with and from peers.

These dramatic developments in connected learning opportunities raise the challenge of digital citizenship:

Project:Connect and the Connected Learning movement

The Connected Learning movement is meeting these challenges by helping make it easier for youth to learn, connect, make, contribute, and share online. And it calls on and encourages youth to become creators and stewards of an open, inviting, and safe web.

The Digital Media and Learning Competition, administered by HASTAC and supported by the MacArthur Foundation, and in collaboration with the Born This Way Foundation and Mozilla, is calling for proposals that offer youth a chance to “Project:Connect” this summer. The Project:Connect-Summer Youth Programming Competition for U.S. based organizations that support learning, youth development and civic engagement calls for Summer event and programming proposals to excite and enable youth to engage the web in civil, collaborative, productive, safe, and confidence-building ways.

A related Project:Connect – Open International Competition will be announced over the summer 2013. Details about the competition will be posted on dmlcompetition.net.

Call for Proposals

Deadline: Online applications are due June 10, 2013, at 5pm PST. How to apply.

Timeline: Project:Connect-Youth Summer Programs will be held July-September, 2013. Full timeline.

Awards: Up to $10,000 per institution; winners to be announced in early July 2013.

Who is eligible to apply: U.S.-based non-profit learning development and civic engagement institutions and organizations (including learning development organizations such as museums, libraries, after school and summer programs). Additional eligibility requirements.

What: The Project:Connect-Summer Youth Programming Competition supports single or multi-day participatory and hands-on learning experiences (labs, hackathons, pop-up events) to be held at U.S.-based organizations from July-September, 2013. Workshops or hackathons will support youth working with peers, mentors, and educators on learning and creating experiences toward a better web for all. Based on the principles of Connected Learning—learning that is equitable, social, and participatory—Project:Connect Summer Youth Programs will give young people hands-on experience creating, testing, and investigating ways to make using the web a better place to learn, connect, make, contribute, and share.

Winning proposals will create:

Program participants may design or create:

Project:Connect Summer Youth Programs may include:

Judging Criteria

Project:Connect-Summer Youth Programming Competition proposals will be evaluated for their potential –


Awardees will be invited to attend joint online webinars in preparation for their awarded events. Webinars will discuss mentoring for the respective programming, post-event activities around the program themes for youth participants, and ongoing web networking for youth participants to make, test, and apply apps concerned with promoting effective digital citizenship, safety, and privacy (with parental/guardian input) for awarded and non-awarded participants alike.

All awarded programs will be considered part of and networked with the Summer of Making and Connecting programs.

Public Outreach

All participating institutions will be asked to document the event and its outcomes in a public way. While organizations and individuals retain creative rights for work created in or for the program, participants will also be encouraged to document and share learning materials, media, and digital tools developed at “Project:Connect” events. The material will be displayed on the Family Online Safety Institute’s website A Platform for Good.

Participating organizations may be also asked to contribute to public outreach for MacArthur’s broader Project:Connect campaign, in support of creating a more equitable, social, and participatory web.

Born Brave Bus

The Born This Way Foundation supports the Born Brave Bus enabling creative programming for youth to promote learning together through play, to build a kinder, braver, and safer web world, and to share stories by youth of their approaches to making for dynamic connected learning environments and a safer, braver web world.

The Born Brave Bus will be available to travel to sites of some of the awarded proposals in the Project:Connect-Summer Youth Programming Competition, to supplement proposed activities supported by a Competition award. The Born Brave Bus is designed to engage each visitor up to 30 minutes with interactive experiences encouraging kindness and safety by and for youth in their connected worlds.

If you are interested in the Born Brave Bus being part of your proposed summer Project:Connect-Summer Youth Program activities, you will have an opportunity in your online application to convey this.