Back in May of 2011, when the YouTube Original Channels Initiative was still just fancy-sounding mumbo jumbo, 25 innovative YouTube Partners won the first ever NextUp competition, securing $35k to fund their content. Over the next year, with Original Channels now forming the sturdy backbone of the site’s creative base, YouTube decided to zero in a little, and targeted chefs and foodies for a specific NextUp contest as well as particularly funny men and women during YouTube Next Comic.
Now, YouTube has zeroed in on a new category of Creators at which to throw money and marketing and production expertise. Having exhausted those who can you make you full, fit, and laugh, the world’s largest online video sharing site has decided to target the people who shape our collective adolescence. That’s right, they’re targeting teachers.
YouTube has announced the Next EDU Guru contest in conjunction with Khan Academy (the YouTube channel that would’ve made high school biology a lot easier if I had known about it back then). They’re searching for ten innovative and creative video educators who can make learning fun. As with previous Next competitions, the winners will get thousands of dollars in assistance in the form of training, promotion, and equipment.
So what is YouTube looking for? You can get a good idea by looking at the Teachers section of the site, or by checking out YouTube EDU. There’s large variety, from the animated tautology of crashcourse to the chalkboard craziness of the MIT channel to the much beloved TED Talks. If you’ve got an idea like any of those, it couldn’t hurt to submit it. You could win the chance to produce it with some well educated support.
The winners will be announced on October 1st. That date seems to arrive just in time for midterms, so I’m sure every high schooler in the country will be rooting for a “We Make Derivatives Fun” channel to take home top honors.