USD students among ’20 Million Loud’ winners

USD students among '20 Million Loud' winners Youth Venture in partnership with MTV's "Choose or Lose 2004" today announced the winners of the "20 Million Loud Grant Contest."

The contest is part of "20 Million Loud," an effort to mobilize more than 20 million young adults age 18 to 30 to vote in the 2004 election. Launched online in February, the "20 Million Loud Grant Contest" asked young people (ages 13-20) to submit written proposals for a nonpartisan sustainable voter registration project for the 2004 election and beyond. The 20 winning teams will receive startup grants to launch their organizations.

"Young people launching their own organizations to register young voters sends a powerful message," said Naomi Feiner, Northeast Regional Director for Youth Venture. "Not only have they identified a critical issue in voter registration – they are empowering themselves to take charge and to do something about it. This talent and capacity for leadership will be demonstrated over and over again in their lives."

Lynn Marie Von Koch, Jon Walz, Delia Druley, Ed Gerrish, Tana Fye, Andrew Christianson, and Jessica Fjerstad of the University of South Dakota were named 20 Million Loud winners for "Voices of Today?Engaged," which aims to ensure that 75 pecent of its student body is registered and 60percent voting. VOTE will hold registration events across the campus, host a speaker series on key political issues, and work with the college paper to publicize voting information.

The twenty winning teams received start-up grants ranging from $500 – $1,000.

Youth Venture is a national organization that invests in young people ages 12-20 who are creating, leading and launching their own organizations, clubs and businesses to benefit the community. Partnered with youth media and youth serving organizations they are building a movement of young people demonstrating their ability to transform and change not only their communities but also themselves.

The "20 Million Loud Grant Contest" is made possible through Choose or Lose, originally launched in 1992.

, "Choose or Lose" is MTV's comprehensive pro-social campaign to inform young adults about the political process, voice their most urgent concerns, compel leading presidential candidates to address those concerns, and mobilize massive numbers of young adults ages 18-30 to register and vote.

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