First ever crowd-funded transcontinental train journey seeks to empower 100 young artists, innovators, and entrepreneurs during 10-day train journey to help move America forward.

Washington, D.C. – Today, The Millennial Trains Project (MTP), a non-profit organization that leads crowdfunded transcontinental train journeys for enterprising, creative, and civic-minded Millennials, announced it has begun accepting applications for its inaugural journey from San Francisco, CA to Washington, DC (August 8-17, 2013).

In partnership with City Year, McKinsey & Company, National Geographic Traveler, Opportunity Nation, and the Startup America Partnership, MTP will turn a caravan of refurbished mid-20thcentury train cars into a mobile innovation lab, campus, and dormitory.

“Journeys build leaders – and Millennials are the new pioneers,” said Patrick Dowd, the Millennial Trains Project’s 25 year-old founder and CEO, “I started MTP to create a platform for people my age to explore their own personal, professional, and creative frontiers on a national scale – and to better understand our country in the process.”

To get on board, applicants will use MTP’s crowdfunding platform to propose and build support for a project that they intend to advance in each community where the train stops.

Applicants have until July 1st to reach a $5,000 fundraising goal, which covers the cost of their participation. Since the application process is a race, those that apply early have the best chance of getting on board. Anyone age 18-34 is eligible to apply, and the public is encouraged to visit the MTP crowdfunding platform to support applicant projects.

Traveling from San Francisco, CA to Washington, D.C. over the course of 10 days, 100 participants will have the opportunity to learn from on-train mentors, explore local examples of innovation, and advance their projects. Participants will be evenly allotted among the following ten professional tracks:

• Advocates: Community organizers, non-profit leaders, changemakers, lobbyists, lawyers;
• Entrepreneurs: Job creators, disruptive thinkers, risk-takers, founders, soon-to-be founders;
• Explorers: Mountaineers, conservationists, astronauts, park rangers;
• Intrapreneurs: Anyone leading within an established company or non-profit organization;
• Innovators: Inventors, hackers, engineers, scientists;
• Makers: Architects, designers, writers, filmmakers, poets, journalists, craftsmen;
• Performers: Actors, singers, dancers, musicians, comedians;
• Public Servants: Political staffers, teachers, enlisted soldiers and law enforcement officials;
• Students: Anyone enrolled in college or grad school, research assistants, fellows;
• Veterans: Anyone who served previously in the military.

“Long before the Internet brought the world to our fingertips, trains served as vehicles of discovery, connection, and economic opportunity,” said Dowd, “we intend to use them for this purpose once again.”


THE MILLENNIAL TRAINS PROJECT (MTP) is a non-profit organization leading crowd-funded transcontinental train journeys to empower diverse groups of Millennials to explore America’s new frontiers. Stopping in 10 cities in 10 days, MTP’s mission is to help participants and virtual audiences to identify, evaluate, and explore emerging opportunities and challenges in the communities where our trains stop – and advance a project that benefits, serves, and inspires others. The inspiration for the Millennial Trains Project comes from a similar train journey, theJagriti Yatra, that founder Patrick Dowd helped lead as a 2010-11 Fulbright Scholar in India. Learn more about the Millennial Trains Project at For the latest news and updates, follow MTP on Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr.

For press inquiries, please contact Jessica Straus ( or 203-219-8666).

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