Youth Drive Their Learning with GripTape

GripTape Youth Leadership, courtesy of GripTape.org

GripTape Youth Leadership, courtesy of GripTape.org

Imagine telling students:

1. You’ll have full decision-making authority over your learning

2. You’ll have financial resources

3. We know you can do it

Mark Murphy, CEO of GripTape, not only imagines it, but he says it out loud. His notion is to put young people in charge of their own learning. Mark was the Secretary of Education in Delaware, among many other accomplishments, but you won’t learn about Mark on GripTape.org. Instead there's information about the Youth Leadership Board and Challengers, the young people in charge. When GripTape says they want young people in the driver’s seat, they really mean it.

The GripTape Learning Challenge gives young people the opportunity and support to pursue their passion. They’ll receive a grant of up to $500 to pursue their passion over the summer. They won't get help from GripTape, but they get plenty of encouragement and are told "I know you can do it."

"If we want young people to be successful in the world, then you let them do things in the world,” said Nigeria, one of the first GripTape Challengers and a Youth Leadership Board member.

GripTape empowers young people to explore their curiosity—to question, to seek. Being curious makes for an active mind and is a trait that lifelong learners share. “As an employer, curiosity is the number one thing I look for in a person,” said Josh Scott, Craftsy co-founder, who employs about 200 people in Denver.

Murphy hopes for a youth-to-youth recruitment strategy, where each young person tells five of their friends about GripTape. That way, they can help reach more kids that the traditional system might miss.

Applications open April 25, 2017 for this summer.

Thanks to the wonderful folks at Donnell-Kay who provided the opportunity to hear Mark Murphy and Nigeria from GripTape speak during April’s Hot Lunch.