Sitting by the peaceful waters of West Point Lake in the state of Georgia, the team had time to digest their experiences and prepare for the journey ahead. The day was warm and the sun’s rays washed over the bus and the team. The waters rippled and shone a brilliant white.
The reprieve was, alas, too short. The 1776 Challenge Cup in D.C. was quickly approaching and all those aboard the PenPal Schools bus had their minds on the competition. They piled into the bus, the engine roared to life, and the bus rambled down the road through the woods towards Raleigh, North Carolina.
Raleigh is a city on the rise; since 1990 the population has doubled (City of Raleigh). The unemployment rate at 6.9% in 2012 was lower than the national average by 1.2%. Raleigh is also a city with a bustling entrepreneurial sector, with many young professionals focused on creating socially-conscious businesses.
Margaret Mead, a cultural anthropologist who made many appearance on mass media in the 1960’s and 70’s, once said, “never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has”. Social entrepreneurship epitomizes Mead’s words; a small group of people creates a product or service that can revolutionize the way people think.
In Raleigh, the PenPal Schools team had a meeting with HQ Raleigh, a working space for entrepreneurs interested in creating businesses that aim for positive social impact. The PPS team got to discuss their passion for progressive change in education and the reasons for the Drive to D.C..
Joe spent several hours preparing for his speech and the rest of the team reflected on their journey thus far. The big day was quickly approaching. With fond farewells, the PenPal Schools team left HQ Raleigh and journeyed north to Washington D.C., where the 1776 Challenge Cup awaited. Read the next installment of the Drive to D.C. story in Part V.