Now in its Second Year, the Nationwide Changemaker Challenge Contest Seeks Youth Who Have BIG Ideas to Change the World and Their Communities
What’s the news
T-Mobile, the T-Mobile Foundation and nonprofit partner Ashoka are teaming up again this year to kick off the second-annual Changemaker Challenge. This nationwide contest gives trailblazing young leaders the stage to share their ideas for creating more connected, sustainable and inclusive communities and make them a reality. Today through Sept. 26, teams can enter the T-Mobile Challenge and vie for the chance to receive seed funding and an on-site Changemaker Lab experience at T-Mobile HQ later this year.
Why it matters
Today’s youth are already challenging the status quo and working to find meaningful solutions that can change the world or tackle the issues facing their own communities… they just need a little help unleashing their ideas! That’s where the T-Mobile Changemaker Challenge comes in!
Who it’s for
Visionaries, advocates and social entrepreneurs ages13 to 23 in the U.S. and Puerto Rico who are passionate about making a positive impact on the world—and the mentors and educators who encourage them! Changemakers can enter starting today, Aug. 8, through Sept. 26 at T-Mobile.com/changemaker.
Today, T-Mobile, the T-Mobile Foundation and Ashoka kicked off the second-annual T-Mobile Changemaker Challenge, a nationwide contest to mobilize the next generation of youth who are ready to create positive change in their communities! Starting today through Sept. 26, youth teams can enter the Challenge by submitting a project that drives social change in one of three categories: Technology, the Environment or Education. Winners selected by senior leaders from T-Mobile and the T-Mobile Foundation will receive seed funding and a three-day Changemaker Lab experience in Bellevue, Wash., to help take their projects to the next level.
“T-Mobile is all about driving change for good—that’s why we launched the Changemaker Challenge last year and are excited to kick it off again in 2019!” said John Legere, CEO of T-Mobile and president of T-Mobile Foundation. “Today’s young people inspire me! They have innovative, dynamic, BIG ideas for making this world an even better place—Changemaker Challenge will give them a boost to make them even BIGGER!”
Here’s how it works:
- Starting now, youth can visit t-mobile.com/changemaker to get all the information they need to participate in the Challenge and enter. Submissions close Sept. 26!
- In November, T-Mobile will announce the Top 30 teams—10 from each of the three categories. Each team will receive seed funding and an all-expenses-paid trip to T-Mobile’s Bellevue, Wash., headquarters in December for the Changemaker Lab, a three-day immersive experience in which teams will receive mentorship from T-Mobile executives, skills training from Ashoka and network opportunities with other amazing teams.
- From the Top 30 teams, the best in each of the three categories will receive additional seed funding and the opportunity to pitch their projects to senior leadership teams of T-Mobile and the T-Mobile Foundation.
- From the three Category Finalist teams, one grand prize winner will receive even MORE seed funding and a SECOND all-expenses-paid trip back to T-Mobile’s HQ for further hands-on mentorship to continue supercharging their ideas.
T-Mobile and the T-Mobile Foundation are again partnering with Ashoka to deliver Changemaker Challenge 2019. For more than 20 years, Ashoka, a 501(c)(3) organization, has supported young social entrepreneurs as they address the world’s biggest challenges, strengthening their skills and transforming their ideas into regional, national and global social impact.
“At Ashoka, we know young people need powerful learning experiences to build empathy, find their purpose and take the lead,” said Bill Drayton, founder and CEO of Ashoka. “Ashoka is proud to support T-Mobile’s Changemaker Challenge, pairing leaders in the tech industry with leading youth changemakers—a winning combination for changing the world for good.”
Last year, T-Mobile and the T-Mobile Foundation provided $60,000 in seed funding to help 30 top teams fast-track their world-changing ideas. Concepts ranged from smashing the stigma of mental health to breaking down barriers between general and special education students to using crowdsourcing to connect high schoolers to financial aid and scholarships. The teams came together at T-Mobile headquarters for the first-ever Changemaker Lab to workshop their ideas and network with other winners. CEO John Legere liked some of the ideas so much, he selected six teams as his own personal CEO Picks and donated another $30,000 out of his own pocket.
One of those CEO Picks was 24-year-old grand-prize winner J.I. Cruz, who submitted a project focused on bringing solar power to storm-threatened rural communities in Puerto Rico. “Participating in the T-Mobile Changemaker Challenge gave me the confidence I needed to understand I had an idea worth fighting for at a time that was critical for my community,” Cruz said. “The seed money allowed me to start putting my ideas into practice—with some extra resources behind me. It’s helped me to dare to dream and make these dreams come true. That sounds super cheesy, but it's the truth!”
Ready to learn more and submit a Changemaking idea? Visit t-mobile.com/changemaker for everything you need to know to enter—categories, thought starters, important deadlines and more! And help us spread the word to changemakers everywhere by sharing on social media with #TMoChangemaker.
About T-Mobile US, Inc.
As America's Un-carrier, T-Mobile US, Inc. (NASDAQ: TMUS) is redefining the way consumers and businesses buy wireless services through leading product and service innovation. Our advanced nationwide 4G LTE network delivers outstanding wireless experiences to 83.1 million customers who are unwilling to compromise on quality and value. Based in Bellevue, Washington, T-Mobile US provides services through its subsidiaries and operates its flagship brands, T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile. For more information, please visit https://www.t-mobile.com.
About T-Mobile Foundation
The T-Mobile Foundation is committed to changing the world for good. The Foundation advances positive change in our communities by supporting causes that focus on youth development, and by providing opportunities for T-Mobile employees to engage in causes that benefit the communities where they live and work. The T-Mobile Foundation, created and funded by T-Mobile US, Inc., is recognized by the IRS as a Section 501(c)(3) private foundation.