BB
Big Problems. Big Ideas

 

“We believe that change starts with education and leadership” – Taylor Thompson

 

This years winners of the Big Problems Big Ideas competition represented some of the most creative middle and high schools students in the nation. The winners of this years competition were:

Bertha Sadler Middle School, Austin, Texas;
“Body Image: Creating a Real Beauty Campaign”

Eugene J. Butler Young Women’s Leadership Academy, Jacksonville, Florida
“Be the Change: Putting an End to Violence”

Brownsville Early College High School, Brownsville, Texas;
“Lack of Sexuality in Our Schools: Why We Need a Big Solution”

 

The winners of the competition were judged on their ability to examine a “big problem” affecting many of their peers around the country and their proposed “Big Idea” solution. Each competing team selected a team of students comprised of one or multiple grade levels That team was asked to use their analytical and research skills to come up with possible solutions. Finally, the team submitted a formal written report to the foundation laying out their answer and the steps they went though to arrive at the answer. We congratulate the winners and salute all nine of the students and communities who took part in the students efforts.

This competition for this upcoming year is based on the success of our last years program. Again we will be asking up to 10 schools to take part in the competition that selected schools to select a big domestic or international problem and identify solutions to that problem. Each school will summit a problem solving narrative report which will be evaluate by a panel of foundation selected judges. The winner(s) of the competition will receive a $3000.00 award to continue their student leadership activities.

Applicants for the Taylor Wilson Thompson Family Foundation awards must be nominated.

Award decisions are solely the responsibility of the Directors

Announcements of Awards for the up coming school year are made in Fall of the calendar year.

Projects must be completed within the academic year of the award.

Applicants must be a public or private school having a 501(c3) status at time of application.

A application must be completed, submitted and approved. The application must outline the activities to be conducted with the students and the desired outcomes.

Programs must be under the supervision of a teacher, school administrator or counselor.

The award must be used in direct support of the students involved.

The Taylor Wilson Thompson Family Foundation award should be acknowledged.

The school being presented the award must submit a one-page evaluation at the conclusion of the project.

  • "I was in charge of researching sexuality education for each state and was horrified that some states refused to provide information and others do not use accurate information, such as Texas."
  • "As I was researching, I found a variety of interesting topics on our paper in the religious and cultural aspects of it. I loved reading how people interpreted the topic differently."
  • "Since I have family members who experienced teen pregnancy, I was able to understand the situation better after researching our topic. I realized that having sexuality education will allow teenagers to make knowledgeable decisions regarding their sexual health."
  • "I was in charge of researching how media influences the topic of sexuality education. I was surprised to find that the media has a very impacting role. Through researching, I gained much knowledge and had a great experience."
  • "Getting people to actually take the survey was difficult. At times, people would respond so immaturely once sexuality education was mentioned. We also were able to see different responses, for example, a mother or father would let their teenage son take a survey but not their teenage daughter who was almost the same age."
  • "Overall, writing a research paper as a group was challenging, but not impossible. I learned so many things lacking in our school system. Before we researched, I had no idea that sexuality education classes existed. I learned the importance of educating teens about sex because without it, there could be lifelong consequences. I am very glad that I was a part of something that can change education for the better."
  • “Our Be the Change Movement was the highlight of my year at the Leadership Schools at Eugene J. Butler. I was so fortunate to work with such a dedicated group of young leaders. Their success shows that when you make positive change, the world will notice. We truly appreciate the support we received from Taylor and Dr. Thompson. They believed in us throughout the entire process and this experience was incredible.”
  • “This is such a huge problem in our nation. I am grateful for this contest because Taylor and the foundation gave us the chance to show the world how much change we are able to create.”
  • “Going to an all girl school can sometimes be hard. There is bullying and it is not right. Through this project, we got to find a solution to this problem and work towards fixing it.”
  • "Writing this research paper gave me great insight into the political aspect of education and its mechanisms. It also made me realize that the future of our education greatly depends on our politicians and legislators, rather than our teachers or students. However, it is important for young leaders to bring attention to the issue by voicing their opinions. I strongly hope that in the future, students and teachers will be able to have a greater say in the matters that affect students directly."
  • "I am so appreciative of the fact that our society was given an opportunity to be nationally recognized. Writing this research paper proved to all our members how they each are leaders. It also provided a means to interact with the community about important matters, such as sexuality education for young people."
  • “This opportunity allowed us to really look at what sort of problems our peers are struggling with. I am glad we had the support from Taylor and the foundation. Without this, we might not have made such a huge change this year.”
  • "I was in charge of researching sexuality education for each state and was horrified that some states refused to provide information and others do not use accurate information, such as Texas."
  • "As I was researching, I found a variety of interesting topics on our paper in the religious and cultural aspects of it. I loved reading how people interpreted the topic differently."
  • "Since I have family members who experienced teen pregnancy, I was able to understand the situation better after researching our topic. I realized that having sexuality education will allow teenagers to make knowledgeable decisions regarding their sexual health."
  • "I was in charge of researching how media influences the topic of sexuality education. I was surprised to find that the media has a very impacting role. Through researching, I gained much knowledge and had a great experience."
  • "Getting people to actually take the survey was difficult. At times, people would respond so immaturely once sexuality education was mentioned. We also were able to see different responses, for example, a mother or father would let their teenage son take a survey but not their teenage daughter who was almost the same age."
  • "Overall, writing a research paper as a group was challenging, but not impossible. I learned so many things lacking in our school system. Before we researched, I had no idea that sexuality education classes existed. I learned the importance of educating teens about sex because without it, there could be lifelong consequences. I am very glad that I was a part of something that can change education for the better."
  • “Our Be the Change Movement was the highlight of my year at the Leadership Schools at Eugene J. Butler. I was so fortunate to work with such a dedicated group of young leaders. Their success shows that when you make positive change, the world will notice. We truly appreciate the support we received from Taylor and Dr. Thompson. They believed in us throughout the entire process and this experience was incredible.”
  • “This is such a huge problem in our nation. I am grateful for this contest because Taylor and the foundation gave us the chance to show the world how much change we are able to create.”
  • “Going to an all girl school can sometimes be hard. There is bullying and it is not right. Through this project, we got to find a solution to this problem and work towards fixing it.”
  • "Writing this research paper gave me great insight into the political aspect of education and its mechanisms. It also made me realize that the future of our education greatly depends on our politicians and legislators, rather than our teachers or students. However, it is important for young leaders to bring attention to the issue by voicing their opinions. I strongly hope that in the future, students and teachers will be able to have a greater say in the matters that affect students directly."
  • "I am so appreciative of the fact that our society was given an opportunity to be nationally recognized. Writing this research paper proved to all our members how they each are leaders. It also provided a means to interact with the community about important matters, such as sexuality education for young people."
  • “This opportunity allowed us to really look at what sort of problems our peers are struggling with. I am glad we had the support from Taylor and the foundation. Without this, we might not have made such a huge change this year.”