What Happens When Students Discover Their Purpose?

When we launched The Future Project almost five years ago, we knew that we wanted to work with young people across the country to discover what they really care about, what gets them out of bed in the morning and keeps them awake at night--their unique passions and dreams--and unleash their potential to make change in their own lives and the world around them.

So we invented the character of the Dream Director, and have deployed them full-time in public high schools reaching over 30,000 young people in 7 cities from coast to coast. Every year, they pour belief into students in their schools, asking questions that force those students to dig into themselves, to ask themselves what brings them alive and why. From this process the students launch ambitious initiatives called Future Projects--campaigns, clubs, new companies, and so much more--that unlock their own potential in ways they never thought possible and inspire and enroll their peers and community.

What we ourselves discovered over the last five years is that the story of this generation--the generation currently in high school--is even bigger and more important than we ever imagined. The story of these students' lives--their hopes and fears, their unwrapping of their own identities, their understanding of their own power--is too big for us to capture. But we'll try.

To that end, we want to share a short piece about Bryce (above), a young man in New Haven, Connecticut, who is using his own passion for dance, for movement, to bring his peers together.

And although the digital coolness of online video can never fully convey the warmth and depth of these young people's spirit, what we hope to offer you here going forward is a keyhole into the work we do, the stories we absorb, and the young people whose genius and resilience are what get us up in the morning.

If you're a dancer and want to participate in Bryce's dance competition, or have ideas and connections to help Bryce further his dream, contact his Dream Director, Akua, at akua.soadwa@thefutureproject.org.