(VANCOUVER, Wash.) – Dream Big Community Center has transformed their traditional in-person programs to an online format using local technology firm, Moca Works premium platform Knowledge Vault to host their content and create an engaging online community. Using content created by its founder, Nathan Webster, in collaboration with the team from MyPlaceToLearn, Inc. in Welches, OR. Dream Big will launch the first edition of its online experience November 15, 2014.
“This is an exciting time for me. I no longer have to deny any parent or student the opportunity to find their dream.” Nathan adds, “Now, we aren’t bound to the classroom or within the confines of the school walls. Technology is an advanced tool that shouldn’t be ignored, and it’s the wave of the future. Not only that, almost all teenagers have a device to connect to the internet.”
The Pew Research put out a report of Teens and Technology 2013 stating, “One in four teens are ‘cell-mostly’ internet users, who say they mostly go online using their phone and not using some other device such as a desktop or laptop computer.”
With the addition of the on-line element, Dream Big Community Center is now able to offer access to their content and resources 24/7 in a format that teens are comfortable with. Students will be able to log in to learn, share and collaborate with fellow students, mentors and program managers at a time that is most convenient for them and from anywhere they have internet service. They will also be able to access a growing list of internet-based resources to enhance their learning, and to have on-going communications with their mentor and fellow students; creating a virtual network of like-minded people to help them stay focused on their dream.
According to Becky Downard, CEO of MyPlaceToLearn, Inc., “Virtual networking is the future, and today’s youth need to be educated on the proper use of these on-line tools as they will undoubtedly be using them when they enter the work force. Understanding how virtual communications differ from in-person communications can be vital to their professional success, and this platform gives them invaluable experience in the use of these tools.”
Technology has finally caught up to the way that we want to communicate, interact and find information online. The critical piece was to find a platform that could support the proven process that Dream Big has developed. Knowledge Vault was just that tool. Businesses, non-profits, government and other organizations have been employing the platform since 2007. It incorporates the best that technology has to offer in online learning, team based collaboration and storing and sharing knowledge. Greg McGreevey, Director of Sales and Business Development for Moca Works said “This was just the perfect fit. Nathan’s programs are both straight forward and incredibly impactful. Knowledge Vault will allow them to recreate the supportive environment they have in the class but online, available for many, many more kids. We are very excited to be working with them as they develop this new phase of their program.”
Having launched its programs in 2008, Dream Big has served more than 2,500 students nationwide, from Vancouver-Portland metro area to Clinton, New York. The Dream Big programs teach the students to focus their energy, understand their dreams and graduate with a purpose. Nathan describes the process as not simply about encouraging students or making them feel good but “to help them discover that their dream is either: a fantasy, a hobby, or reality. It can only be one, not all three.”
To have the programs online is a huge milestone, which is why Dream Big has initiated their campaign, Every Child is At Risk. “C’mon, let’s be honest,” Nathan said. “The current job market is tough and not getting any easier. All students are at risk of not getting the career they want in this global economy.” The three goals of the campaign are to: 1) release the beta online program; 2) raise $100,000; and 3) reach 5,000 students online.
“The first goal is already done,” Nathan said. “The other two will happen by letting folks know who we are and what we do in the community. It’s not an overnight process, so it’s a gradual progression. It’s about breaking the educational norm of learning only in the classroom.”
Dream Big Community Center is a 501c3, private non-profit organization founded in 2004. Is a young non-profit focused on the development of young people, especially in their teen years. Dream Big is gaining awareness and excited about future opportunities to provide young people. For any more information, please visit www.dreambigcc.org.
# dream it, build it, live it #