A student competition about doing good in
“The success of our schools can’t be measured only by proficiency on statewide tests and increases in graduation rates. We must think in terms of the skills and dispositions we foster, the quality and depth of experiences we provide, the opportunities we create for our young people to discover their voices and develop their agency. All of our students in all of our schools deserve all that a high-quality education makes possible—talents that are discovered, doors that open, and lives that change.”
Dr. Sonja Brookins Santelises
CEO, Baltimore City Public Schools
For the 2019-2020 school year, we are pleased to invite Baltimore, MD, students in grades 6-12
to participate in the very first Baltimore-based Milton Wolf Prize competition.
To enter, students must identify a community problem (examples of past projects include homelessness, poverty, gender inequality, racism, among other topics), research the resources and local organizations addressing that problem, create a video or other presentation (PowerPoint, Prezi) to teach community members about the problem and how to get involved – and then go out and educate others using their presentation.
After the projects have been reviewed and the winners/runners up determined, winning students will reach even more people with their message during a special community event: the Marketplace of Civic Learning. After presenting their projects to a gathering of community members, friends, family, school administrators and faculty, representatives from local organizations mentioned in their projects will share information about their work so everyone can learn more about how they, too, can make a difference.
This is how we provide real-world learning experiences for Baltimore students.
This is how we empower students to become active citizens.
This is how we make a difference in Baltimore.
For teachers assigning this project in class, this project will help meet standards in civics; government; English language arts; social studies; writing; speech/communication; and technology, yet it does not have to be done as part of a classroom assignment. This project meets the Maryland State Teaching standards listed here. We also welcome participation from students in school clubs, youth groups, or students interested in doing the project on their own or with friends.
Competition guidelines and requirements:
This competition is open to public school students in Baltimore.
Students must be in grades 6-12.
Students may work individually, or in groups.
The project does not have to be part of a classroom assignment - we encourage youth groups, school clubs, and others to do the project, as well.
Your goal: educate others about a community problem you care about through a visual presentation. This is not merely another school presentation - your objective must be to move people to action.
We also recommend these resources on the Illinois Holocaust Memorial Museum's web page for their Take a Stand Lab, with practical tips for advocacy, raising awareness, giving, and participation in civic activism.
Fill out and submit the Google Form application, where you must include the link to your project - please do not email us the link. This means your project must be accessible to our judges via the Internet, and completed before you fill out the submission form.
The final project will be a video, PowerPoint, Prezi or other visual presentation, no longer than five minutes, and must include:
- a description of a community problem or conflict, including any information necessary for others to understand the problem;
- an overview of how community members are trying to solve the problem;
- specific information about community resources to do so (individuals or organizations) - remember, you will present this to others in order to get them involved;
- an explanation of why addressing this particular problem is important;
- the lessons you think people should take away from the examples of Milton Wolf, and the people of La Benevolencija in the Survival in Sarajevo story.
In addition to showing your project to your classmates and others at your school, you must present your project to people beyond the school walls, and show us that you are truly educating others about the problem you chose to research. This can be a youth group, a church or synagogue or mosque or other religious house of worship, a community board or council, a community center. Your teacher must submit a letter acknowledging that you did this, and indicating where you presented it and when.
Three winning projects will receive $400
Two runner-up projects will receive $100
Winning submissions will be uploaded to Centropa’s Border Jumping page, so that students throughout the US, Europe, and Israel will learn about what your community is doing to make the world a better place.
Interested in doing this project? Register here.
Please register for the project, so we know how many students will submit a project. This also applies to any students submitting projects outside of a class, club, or youth group assignment.
Thurs, Nov 21, 8-9pm: Join our Centropa "PD in PJs" webinar where we will answer questions about the Milton Wolf Prize competition and Marketplace of Civic Learning, introduce you to Centropa's free teaching resources, and tell you all about our upcoming Centropa Summer Academy (CSA) in Vienna, 6-13 July, 2020.
Friday, May 22, 2020: Projects due
Presentations must be accessible to reviewers through an online link. If you make a video, you might want to use YouTube or Vimeo. If you do a PowerPoint you might want to use Googledocs. Either way, all projects must:
- be accessible via an online link;
- have open privacy settings so our review committee members can access them. If we have to email you to request access for the review judges that will slow down the review process.
Marketplace of Civic Learning Event (exact date and location TBD, possibly cancelled due to social isolation rules).
Email or call Lauren Granite, US Education Director,
at or (301)787-0052.
Tips for Making a Strong Presentation
Your presentation must thoughtfully educate those who see them. You are telling a story: here is a problem, this is why I think it is important, these are the people trying to help and how they are helping, and this is how you can help.
Plan - how will you make sure that your presentation is done in time to present to a group outside your school before the deadline? We recommend that you plan backwards:
starting with the due date, arrange to present your project to a group outside of your school at least one week prior to the due date;
make sure you arrange for any rides or logistics you will need for your presentations, including audio/visual equipment such as a computer, projector, screen, and/or speakers.
Content - why should we care? Tell us a story about this problem, why it's important, who it effects, and how we can help. Do your research, and make sure that your facts and figures are relevant to your topic. For example, if you are talking about homelessness in your town, you might want to include facts about homelessness around the country to give context, but you also need to include statistics about homelessness in your town since that is your main topic.
Presentation - how will you tell the story in images and words? Your presentation must be visually engaging - that is how you will move people to action, which is your goal. PowerPoints should use bullet points, not complete sentences, as well as images to convey the information and tell your story. If you use video, make sure the audio is clear and easy to understand
Action - What information do your viewers need to follow through and get involved? How will you contribute, beyond your presentation? Projects are expected to provide your viewers with specific information about how they can get involved: who to contact, how to contact them, etc. Extra points will be given to those projects where students actively get involved in helping with the community problem they describe.
Questions? Contact Lauren Granite at email@example.com, or (301)787-0052.