[UPDATE: It may be useful to browse these old listings as many programs are annual, but for more current contests and competitions, head to the Youth Opportunities page.]
Every Saturday I post about current youth opportunities that are open to submissions from Ontario residents, which naturally includes a lot of contests and competitions open to youth across Canada and the US. Please note I'm not attesting to the legitimacy or quality of anything listed here - read the fine print carefully and make your own judgement call, especially if a submission fee or creative rights are involved!
This week I saw an amazing video (via @alanfriesen) about eight students who created their own "school within a school", pursuing independent projects while studying traditional high school subjects in a more personal way. It's fifteen minutes long, but The Independent Project is well worth it. (I love that it all started because student Sam Levin was complaining to his mom and she just said, "Well, why don't you start your own school?" - she seems like an unsung hero in all this!)
Check out the round-up of opportunities for youth below the video.
Act NOW! International Performance Writing Festival
• Open to anyone 14-16
• Deadline April 30th, 2011
The Act NOW! International Performance Writing Festival invites individuals or teams to submit a performable creative writing piece such as a play, speech, monologue or poem that deals with the issue of sustainability. There are numerous tips on the website, and you can read the scripts by past winners. There are no entry fees, and there is a $200 prize for the winning piece in each age category (Junior and Senior). Your writing may be performed by schools and other troupes across Canada - thoroughly explore the website for all the details!
Forestry Connects Video Contest
• Open to grade 9 and 10 students in southern Ontario, ages 14-18
• Deadline April 15, 2011
Work in a team of two to five schoolmates to make a short video (up to 4 minutes long) expressing how you think we should be using Ontario's forests. The winning team will earn a trip to Dryden, Ontario to take part in a Conservation Camp. The Forestry Connects Video Contest is a project of the Ontario Forestry Association and the Ministry of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry.
The T24 Project
• Open to Greater Toronto Area residents aged 18-28
• Registration deadline April 27th (space may be limited)
I mentioned in a previous round-up that the Toronto Youth Shorts Film Festival is accepting submissions from filmmakers aged 18-28 for the annual festival, but whether or not you have a film ready to submit, you can register to be part of the T24 Project. This challenge invites teams of up to four filmmakers to create a 7-15 minute film in just 24 hours. The festival provides a challenge question that will relate to the city of Toronto itself, so you'll need to be in the city during the event, April 29th - 30th. There's a $25 registration fee that covers the entire team and unspecified prizes to be won.
Canada: A Digital Nation 2017 Video Contest
• Open to all Canadians
• Deadline April 24th
The vision of the Canada 3.0 digital media conference "is that anyone in Canada will be able to do anything online by 2017", and the Digital Nation 2017 contest asks what you think that will look like. Videos up to 5 minutes long are welcome, and the website emphasizes that they are more interested in ideas than production quality, so web cam monologues and the like are all welcome. There are three prizes of $500 to be won and other entries may also be showcased on the website and at the conference.
Previously Highlighted Youth Opportunities
- National Shakespeare Youth Festival (High school: Registration open)
- Raising Voices Festival - Toronto (Ages 13-19: 03/30/11)
- Dare 2 Move ParticipACTION Teen Challenge (Ages 13-19: Extended to 03/31/11)
- Canadian Aboriginal Writing & Arts Challenge (Ages 14-29: 03/31/11)
- Kaleidoscope Real World Video Challenge (Ages 18 and under, 03/31/11)
- So You Think You Know Mining Video Competition (High school students under age 19: 03/31/11)
- Toronto Public Library - Young Voices 2011 (Ages 12-19: 04/02/11)
- Google Global Science Fair (Ages 13-18: 04/04/11)
- Trend Micro "What's Your Story?" video contest (Ages 13+ : 04/05/11)
- "Action! Easter Seals Kids" Video Contest (All ages: 04/07/11)
- BunchFamily AGO Summer Camp Contest (19+ to enter but camps for ages 6 to 13: 04/12/11)
- Paperny Films: So You Think You Can Make TV? Digital Video Contest (Ages 19-30: 04/15/11)
- The Great EcoKids Challenge (Grades K-8: 04/29/11)
- Playwright's Guild of Canada - National Post-Secondary Play Writing Competition (Post-Secondary students: 04/29/11)
- RBC Tarragon Emerging Playwrights’ Competition (All ages: 04/29/11)
- 2011 Toronto Youth Shorts Film Festival (Ages 18-28: 04/29/11)
- Because I Am a Girl: smartgirl Contest (Ages 16+: 04/30/11)
- The Spirit of Will Munro Award (Ages 26 and under: 04/30/11)
- Canada's Next Green Journalist (Ages 12-18: 04/30/11)
- The James Bartleman Aboriginal Youth Creative Writing Award (Ages 18 and under: 05/31/11)
- "Science Can Fix That" Video Contest (Ages 6-18 or 19 and full-time high school student: 05/03/11)
- The Fraser Institute Essay Contest (High school & post-secondary students: 06/01/11)
- Historica-Dominion Institute's Great Questions of Canada Essay Competition (Students ages 17-25: 06/30/11)
- The 90-Second Newberry Film Festival (09/15/11)
- Toronto Chapter of The Awesome Foundation for the Arts and Sciences (15th of each month) or find other chapters of the Awesome Foundation