We are pleased to announce the Global Connections and Exchange Youth TechCamps: My Community, Our Earth Program (GCE MyCOE). Outstanding United States high school students will be selected to team up with counterparts in Bolivia, Panama, or South Africa. They will collaborate online and in person at one of three rounds of training events in these countries to address the theme of GeoTechnologies for Climate Change & Environment.  All camps will provide competitively-selected youth with academic preparation, orientation, cultural exchange, mentoring and training in use of geotechnologies such as online mapping, community GIS, mobile GPS, and crowdmapping. Each TechCamp round will engage 40 competitively-selected students, aged 15-18, including 10 from across the US, and 30 national counterparts. At each camp, participants will self-organize on teams to create youth-led local projects using online geotechnologies. Teams will continue to work through online collaboration to finish their projects, which will then be showcased in an Online Youth Leadership Project Fair at the end of the program.

The program aims to provide opportunities for youth to learn more about online

geotechnologies and how to apply them in service of their communities, while gaining a deeper understanding about different places and cultures of the world. It is conducted by the Association of American Geographers (AAG) with funding and support from the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Youth Programs Division. In addition to ongoing global programs, AAG has conducted regional initiatives in the Middle East, Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, and Latin America under the MyCOE partnership, offering youth an array of resources both online and in print to address themes of sustainable development important to their regions and their communities. To date, MyCOE has supported about 800 youth projects in 102 countries, trained hundreds of students and teachers in the U.S. and around the world, provided professional development, and facilitated connections among universities, governmental agencies, nonprofit organizations, private sector entities, and schools.

Deadline for U.S. applicants is January 10, 2014 and for international applicants is February 1, 2014.

A full call for applications is available with details of the terms of participation, eligibility rules, specific application instructions, and criteria for selection on the Techcamps webpage. Pre-camp preparations, webinars, and virtual exchanges take place through May, followed by the TechCamps in summer 2014. Post-camp virtual exchange activities will include online project collaboration supported by the program and finalized by the end of 2014.

The official language for this initiative is English.

For more information, contact: mycoe [at] aag [dot] org or visit www.aag.org/techcamps.