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Students from Around the World Engage with BCIL Technology Impact Challenge
by Katie McKellar, Assistant Director of the Belldegrun Center for Innovative Leadership

We would like to congratulate our student winners of the recent BCIL Impact Challenge on Humane Technology! We again saw participation from students around the country, and this time we received international submissions as well. You can view a compilation video of the winning ideas here.  

In this BCIL Impact Challenge, participants were asked to identify a challenge related to the humane and healthy use of technology and propose a solution that advances systemic change.  Students identified challenges related to mental health, cyberbullying, media bias, and technology addiction.  Solutions from the winning teams ranged from expanding regulation to prevent personalized ad tracking, to using artificial intelligence to scan photos and alert users to extreme photo editing, to apps that track users’ experiences on social media and provide personalized recommendations to improve their mental health.  

Winning teams met with industry leaders, including Tristan Harris and Randima Fernando (Co-Founders of the Center for Humane Technology, and both profiled in the Netflix documentary “The Social Dilemma”) and Susan Reynolds (Co-Founder and Board Chair at They also participated in a workshop with the BCIL staff and other student winners to share and receive feedback on their ideas. 

Doug Keller, who leads Education Outreach at the Center for Humane Technology, reflected on the experience meeting with student winners: "We need technology that protects our vulnerabilities and helps build a more humane future. The students who contributed to this impact challenge showed that this future is possible if we listen to and take seriously the ideas of the next generation."

A special congratulations to our Brentwood students who were selected as winners and below are a few student reflections on their experience:

“I thought that the most meaningful part of this experience was to see people of all ages and from places all over the country talk together and express their ideas about something they are passionate about.”

“I really enjoyed seeing other participants' proposals and also I was able to talk about a huge problem with other people in my school through this challenge which was really nice. “

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