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Project: Tell Us About Your Nontraditional Education

Tell us your stories of success and frustration as a nontraditional student trying to obtain post-secondary degree to help inspire others.


The classic educational path is simple: go to high school for four years, graduate, and go on to college for four years. But, as everyone knows, life can be complicated and for lots of people, other important obligations—jobs, family, serving in the military—take precedence over finishing school.

But just as often, those who didn't follow a linear path toward education still end up with a college diploma. Like the video above says, those nontraditional students are undeniably impressive. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation wants all Americans to have a college degree, and for that to happen, we are going to need to help people get those diplomas, no matter how they do it.

We want to make sure everyone who doesn't yet have a college degree is encouraged to do so, and we want you to help inspire them. Tell us your stories of success and frustration as a nontraditional student trying to obtain your post-secondary degree, and hopefully others can learn from your example.

You can submit in any any media you want—a video, a photo, a poster, a comic, anything else. Be creative. There will be three winners. First place will be featured on our home page, printed in the next issue of GOOD, and receive a GOOD T-shirt and a free subscription. Second and third place will receive a GOOD T-shirt and a free subscription. All submissions are subject to the full terms and conditions, which you can find here.


Tell us your story of your nontraditional education path.


Submissions are due by midnight Pacific time on November 16, 2010. For videos, please upload them to either YouTube or Vimeo and send us a link. For images, please make your submissions 451 pixels wide, and no larger than 5 megabytes. For text, please send a PDF. We’ll contact the winners for publishable versions.

We’ll post all submissions here on November 23, 2010. You can email your submissions to projects [at] goodinc [dot] com with the subject: GOOD / Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Education Contest.

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