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Get on Board with the Millennial Trains Project

· June 7, 2013

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The Millennial Trains Project (MTP) is seeking applicants from young creators, innovators, and entrepreneurs for a cross-country road trip from the Bay Area to D.C., August 8-17.  (They’re also planning two other tracks, the South (L.A. to Miami in January 2014) and the North (Portland to Boston in June 2014).)

What are millennials and why trains?  Millennials are 18-34 and optimistic about making a difference, and trains have always connected people and commerce, since way before the Internet.  (For more, check out MTP’s FAQ; those are the first two things on it.)

The project is inspired by a similar trip in India, which has led to successful startup businesses, due to the creativity that is bound to occur when entrepreneurs and artists are brought together to collaborate.  As MTP Founder and CEO Patrick Dowd told me:

“One of the most high probability ways to foster innovation is to gather diverse people in close quarters and have them work together to spawn ideas.”

Applications are due July 1, but applying early is encouraged, as the process is rolling; the first person to receive $5,000 in crowdfunding in each of 10 specified categories gets a spot on the train.  Many applications have already been submitted and are in the process of getting funding.

It will be interesting to see what types of disruptive innovation come out of this train ride.

Innovation

New technologies are constantly emerging that promise to change our lives for the better. These disruptive technologies give us an increase in choice, make technologies more accessible, make things more affordable, and give consumers a voice. And the pace of innovation has only quickened in recent years, as the Internet has enabled a wave of new, inter-connected devices that have benefited consumers around the world, seemingly in all aspects of their lives. Preserving an innovation-friendly market is, therefore, tantamount not only to businesses but society at large.