Originally a startup incubator, 1313 Innovation inside the old Hercules Building in downtown Wilmington evolved over the last couple of years into a sort of nonprofit communal space and home base for organizations like Social Contract, Summer Collab and Best Buddies.
A few times a week, cohorts of high school students from schools across the area would convene in the Innovation Lab (a conference room with couches and writable walls instead of a conference table) to develop and launch social projects, from park revitalization to direct action campaigns to peer mentoring, all part of Dual School, a program launched by a team led by University of Delaware Horn Entrepreneurship alum Zack Jones in 2017.
The following year, Dual School launched its first in-school program, at William Penn High School. That summer, they debuted the Dual School Summer Youth Program, where, among other projects, The Warehouse, a teen-led project by REACH Riverside, was prototyped.
By last summer, The Warehouse was not only running but expanding. It continues to be a resource for youth in the city during the COVID-19 pandemic, including involvement with the Riverside Relief Fund and being a site for free Wi-Fi during school closures.
It’s due to those closures that Dual School has shifted to an all virtual summer program this year, with four themed weeks:
- Week 1 (June 20 to July 2): Social Justice
The essential question driving this week is “How might we create a more fair and just world for all?” Discussions will cover topics like racism, sexism, and other forms of discrimination.
- Week 2 (July 6 to 9): Environment
The essential question driving this week is “How might we care for the world around us?” Discussions will be centered around sustainability, the human connection to nature, and our responsibility to care for the planet.
- Week 3: (July 13 to 16): Health and Wellbeing
The essential question driving this week is “How might we care for ourselves?” During this week, students will experience practices like meditation, mindfulness, as well as discussion about inequities in the modern healthcare system.
- Week 4: (July 20 to 23): Technology
The driving question is “How might we use technology for social good?” Topics covered during this session will include how technologies like automation, apps and social networking can all play a role in creating positive social change.
The program meets for 90 minutes on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Each week costs $99 (with scholarships available). Applications are due 10 days before the session, with Week 1 due by June 19, Week 2 by June 26, Week 3 by July 3 and Week 4 by July 10.
To apply, or for more information, go to dualschool.com/summer.-30-