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New Video Game Initiative Promotes Social Change in Minority Communities

New program will award youths with grants for creating video games that solve social problems in their communities


Washington, DC - The Entertainment Software Association, Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF), HHF’s Leaders on the Fast Track (LOFT), and others, today announced a new program to provide minority youths with an opportunity to promote social change through video games. The ESA LOFT Video Game Innovation Fellowship program will award 20 youths, aged 16 to 24, with grants for creating video games which seek solutions to problems that face their communities.

“At the core of the ESA LOFT Video Game Innovation Fellowship is the belief that using technology for social change is essential to not only the advancement of minority communities, but America as a nation,” said Jose Antonio Tijerino, president and CEO of HHF. “HHF, Black Association for Science and Engineering, BK Nation, and others are thrilled to partner with the ESA, and together encourage social innovation among youth on their terms, through technology and video games. This program is an embodiment to our tag line of ‘helping a young leader help thousands more’ except in this case it can be millions more.”

The Video Game Innovation Fellows and their games will be selected based on their vision, creativity, and potential impact on their community. In October, the Fellows will present their ideas to influencers and policymakers in Washington, DC. Applicants can find more information about the fellowships and apply online at by October 1, 2013.

“The ESA LOFT Video Game Innovation Fellowship will show how games are more than a means of entertainment, but also a tool for change in our society,” said Rich Taylor, senior vice president of communications and industry affairs at the ESA. “We are proud to offer an opportunity that will help create real change in minority communities through the unique platform only video games can provide.”

About ESA
ESA offers services to interactive entertainment software publishers, including conducting business and consumer research, providing legal and policy analysis and advocacy on First Amendment, intellectual property and technology/e-commerce issues, managing a global anti-piracy program, owning and operating E3, and representing video game industry interests in federal and state government relations. For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter: @RichatESA.

About Hispanic Heritage Foundation and Leaders on Fast Track
LOFT is HHF’s award-winning, leadership and workforce development program focused on America’s “priority fields” including STEM and innovation. Tens of thousands of students and young professionals are connected to each other and provided with trainings, priority-field-tailored symposia, workshops, and Charlas. Hundreds are placed into internships, mentorships, fellowships and full-time positions with Fortune 100 companies and government agencies.
HHF was established by the White House in 1987 and believes that through innovation across all fields that Latinos are the leaders of today, not tomorrow. HHF also promotes Latino cultural pride, accomplishment, and the great promise of the community through public awareness campaigns seen by millions. Visit for more background.

About BK Nation
BK Nation (BK stands for building knowledge) is a national movement of people from all backgrounds which combines grassroots-activism, pop culture, technology, and social media to spark projects and campaigns led by the people, for the people. BK Nation embraces the motto “The leadership is us” to convey that any real and lasting change in our America, and on our planet, will happen because of our collective voices, ideas, and actions.

About Black Association for Science and Engineering
Black Association for Science and Engineering (BASE) is an organization formed by Homeland Security technology experts to inspire youth in the African American community to pursue STEM-related careers. BASE encourages youth to unleash their unlimited potential to compete across various STEM fields and emerging areas like cybersecurity.



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