Ten days, seven cities, and 20 innovators, entrepreneurs, and change agents, riding the rails to make a difference. It's called the Millennial Trains Project, and it's a chance for individuals ages 18 to 34 to work towards building lasting change across America. The next journey leaves on May 21, 2015. Here's what it's all about.
Want to embark on a 10-day trans-continental train journey that could change your life's trajectory? Are you between the ages of 18 and 34, passionate about what you do, and ready to share that passion and help manifest positive change across a key set of cities and communities across the country? Are you ready to inspire others and be inspired tenfold in turn? Then read on, because the Millennial Trains Project could be just what you're looking for.
Introducing the Millennial Trains Project
The Millennial Trains Project (MTP) is "a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that leads crowdfunded transcontinental train journeys for diverse groups of young innovators to explore America's new frontiers."
And as one previous innovator describes it, "It is a platform for people to explore their areas of interest and develop themselves as leaders on a trans-regional scale."
Former participants include a policy analyst passionate about climate change, a tech entrepreneur who wants to change the face of education, and a former White House speechwriter turned emerging poet. By the end of their transcontinental trek, the policy analyst authored Congressional legislation and launched the non-profit Clean Energy for Innovation, the tech entrepreneur sold his tech to the Minneapolis school district, and the poet exhibited her photographs from the jouney — documenting her public installations of her poetry in each city — in a gallery show.
Training on the Train
Through the guidance of mentors — including IDEO's Scott Paterson and Keith Bellows, Editor in Chief of National Geographic Traveler — and on-train seminars, each MTP participant gains the knowledge they need to work with local and regional leaders in each city. Add to that the interactions with fellow participants on board — who are often as diverse as the passions that drive them — and a journey on the MTP can become a vehicle for individual growth, collective discovery, and social change.
Here's a video from their first cross-country journey:
So How do You Get on Board?
"Applicants," the MTP site states, "get on board by pitching a project they want to advance across the communities where our train stops, and then racing to crowdfund the cost of their ticket to ride."
What you need to do: Make sure to submit your application (including the $5,000 you'll need to crowdfund) no later than April 1, 2015. If you're selected, get ready to ride the rails on May 21, 2015, when the train leaves Los Angeles en route for Washington, D.C. If you become part of this next journey, let us know, and we'll follow you along the way.
To find out more about MTP, visit their website.
Photo and video republished with permission from the Millennial Train Project.