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$25K Prizes to Best Innovation for Boosting College Attainment

$25K Prizes to Best Innovation for Boosting College Attainment 

An Indiana non-profit dedicated to elevating postsecondary education outcomes has put up $50,000 to elicit the best ideas for boosting the number of people who earn post-secondary credentials out of high school. The "challenge" is the idea of the Lumina Foundation, which has set an objective called "Goal 2025," which states that by 2025 60 percent of working-age Americans — an additional 16 million people — will achieve "high-quality" degrees or certificates or other credentials.

The LIFT Prize 2017, which is being managed on InnoCentive, hopes to woo applications from organizations that can show their ideas have had a "positive impact" on postsecondary attainment within the United States or that their current model could be transferred to Goal 2025.

Entries that come in by the deadline on April 9, 2017 will be narrowed down to three finalists, who will be invited to a live pitching event at the first annual LIFT Conference taking place May 11 and 12 in Indianapolis. Each finalist will receive a stipend covering the costs of travel, accommodations and attendance at the event.

Two awards will be made. A $25,000 prize will be awarded at the event by a panel of judges; another $25,000 prize will be issued through "crowd voting." As the rules point out, a single entity could win both awards. The winners will also be considered for further investment by Lumina Impact Ventures, a social investment division dedicated to supporting organizations that could accelerate the progress of Goal 2025.

The winners won't have to transfer or license their intellectual property. However, Lumina does retain the right to publicize the names and images of people who participate in the competition.

The LIFT Prize site is on the InnoCentive website here.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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