Each year, Rise invites 15-17 year olds from around the world to participate in the Rise Challenge. Unlike many traditional applications, Rise uses videos, projects, and group interviews so applicants have multiple opportunities to showcase their potential. For applicants without access to a video recording device, we offer the option of submitting text responses. For applicants without access to technology, we offer an alternative low-tech pathway through paper applications.
The Rise Challenge encourages applicants to create an individual project that demonstrates their talents and benefits their communities, and peer review other applicants’ projects, among other activities.
After applicants complete the Rise Challenge, Rise selects up to 500 Finalists to advance to “Finalist Days,” where they demonstrate their motivations, problem-solving abilities, and teamwork skills in an innovative interview format.
From the 500 Finalists, Rise selects up to 100 Global Winners to receive various benefits as they work to serve others.
Applicants for the 2023 cohort must be between the ages of 15 and 17 as of July 1, 2023, meaning they are born on or between July 2, 2005 and July 1, 2008.
It does not matter what country they live in, background they come from, or academic experience they have. Whether they are interested in science, innovation, technology, art, policy, community organizing, or any other discipline—we want to hear from them.
Rise is a program that finds brilliant people who need opportunity and supports them as they work to serve others. We understand that economic barriers are not the only challenges that keep brilliant people from serving others throughout their lives.
Rise Global Winners hail from around the world and demonstrate brilliance in a range of disciplines. Some may excel in STEM fields, others may show outstanding artistic ability, and others may have a gift for community service and organizing.
All Rise Global Winners demonstrate the five Rise Traits:
Meet the Rise Global Winners at www.risefortheworld.org/global-winners.
The purpose of our selection process is to look at the whole you, not just your past achievements—but also your potential to commit to a lifetime of service to others. To do this, we divide our selection process into distinct components so we can learn about you from as many different angles as possible.
Your video responses will be reviewed by a random selection of your peers according to the Rise Traits. This review will get factored along with the other information you’ve shared throughout the application process to develop a composite score.
The submissions receiving the highest scores will be reviewed by a panel of judges. The panel of judges includes global experts who come from diverse backgrounds and work across numerous fields.
Up to 500 Finalists will be selected to participate in a series of activities and interviews. These applicants are further evaluated by an additional review panel that selects up to 100 Global Winners.
The application is like a jigsaw puzzle of multiple pieces: your responses to the short essay questions, your reviews of other peoples’ responses, others’ reviews of your responses, your project, your profile information, and other assessments. All pieces count and together form a whole picture of you as an applicant throughout the Rise Challenge.
The main pathway for completing your application is through Rise’s web-browser application Hub. You’re encouraged to download a printable version of the questions that you can use to work on offline to develop your responses. If you are unable to access the Rise application because you don’t have a connected device or you have limited data, you may request a printable, paper application.
The activities are similar in each pathway, and we look for the same attributes. We encourage you to choose the pathway that works best for you based on your access to technology:
The web-browser application is accessible through web browsers, supporting both video and written responses to the prompts and peer review. Through video, you can showcase aspects of yourself that might be more challenging to get across in writing. You will get to watch and review the responses of your peers and see what they’re working on. If you apply in writing, you’ll be reviewing written responses. By applying through the web, you’ll also have access to the Rise Hub, where you can connect to Rise’s global online community on Discord and sign up to attend upcoming events.
The paper application asks for written responses to the same questions asked on the other pathway. There is no opportunity to view other people’s projects and you will need to submit a special request to gain access to the online community. Applicants who apply via the paper pathway certify that it is their sole method of entry.
The 100-day Rise Challenge begins at 12:00 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) on 18 October 2022 and ends at 16:59 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) on 25 January 2023. You are encouraged to pace yourself throughout this time to complete a project before it's over. How you use your time will be up to you, but Rise will provide guidance and suggestions along the way.
Each video response to a prompt should be 3 minutes or less.
Each written response to a prompt should be no more than 1600 characters, which is about 14 sentences or 2 paragraphs.
Once you select either video or text, you’re committed to that format throughout the application. We ask that you don’t use the text response option to the project prompts unless you need to because you're limited from submitting via video.
Applicants are required to provide peer review on three projects after submitting their own. In each case, you’ll review a minimum of three submissions of your peers by answering select questions. The more videos you review, the more perspective and inspiration you’ll gain.
Upon submitting your Rise project, you’ll be asked to provide peer review by reviewing the projects of three of your peers. Each project review will be a compilation of the five videos or written responses that the peer has produced. This is a total of fifteen videos. Be sure to allow yourself time to provide a thoughtful assessment.
We want to see what you care about—whatever form it takes!
You could create a piece of music, art, performance, or film; develop a new product, software service, or business; build a social or political movement; create a body of research; or anything else. We encourage you to think of creative ways that your project could benefit your community.
Your project can be part of a larger initiative, but the work that you present in your videos or written responses must be something that you start between October 2022 and January 2023 and must be work you’ve specifically prepared for your Rise application. If you’re pursuing a passion that you’ve completed projects on previously, that’s great; just make sure the work that you’re presenting is all new. You may be asked to verify this at points throughout the application process.
Candidates are assessed individually. If you are currently working on a group project that you would like to use for the Rise Challenge, we ask that you only showcase the areas in which you work on yourself. Please be detailed and honest as to what your role and responsibilities are. If you progress to the Finalist stage, we may verify that you did what you claim. Rise Finalists and Rise Global Winners are awarded to individuals, not groups or teams.
The resources, such as the think sheets, online lessons, and workshops, are to help you with your Rise Challenge and, hopefully, enrich your experience. They are optional and will not be factored into the Rise selection process.
You are encouraged to download a printable version of the questions that can be used to work offline. Research your answers, formulate responses, and develop your project, then come back online to update your application.
If you are unable to access the Rise application because you don’t have a connected device or you have limited data, you may request a printable, paper application by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.