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Games for Social Change

HEART is excited to be involved with the launch of the Games for Change Student Challenge with the NYC Department of Education. With the help of their teachers and game designers, hundreds of middle and high school students from public schools across NYC will create original digital games about social issues in their communities, including animal welfare!

A Kinder World Foundation is sponsoring the animal welfare theme, with HEART’s support in providing resources and conducting a workshop for the students selecting this game theme. Students will design games that address the dog and cat overpopulation crisis in NYC by teaching players about the issue and how they can help. Some of the other important themes in this challenge are civic journalism and under-reported stories (sponsored by The New York Times), smart cities (sponsored by NYC Mayor’s Office of Technology & Innovation), youth justice (sponsored by the American Civil Liberties Union), and adult literacy (sponsored by XPRIZE Foundation).

All public NYC middle and high school students are invited to participate in the challenge! Twenty teachers from schools in all five NYC boroughs were selected to receive robust training to run game design courses to empower students to learn computer programming and create their own games, boosting 21st-century skills and encouraging civic participation.

After students submit their games between October 2015 and January 2016, a jury of experts will select the best games. An awards ceremony and a public arcade featuring the top games will be hosted in March by the Museum of the Moving Image in Queens.

We can’t wait to see the student game submissions. Please help spread the word about this challenge to NYC students and teachers!

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