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Fast Company Announces Winners of 2020 World Changing Ideas Awards

April 28, 2020

The Newsela LGBTQIA+ Studies Collection selected as honorable mention in education.

The winners of Fast Company’s 2020 World Changing Ideas Awards were announced today, honoring the businesses, policies, projects, and concepts that are actively engaged and deeply committed to flattening the curve when it comes to the climate crisis, social injustice, or economic inequality. 

In partnership with content providers, public schools in New Jersey, and educators from the NYC Department of Education, Newsela, an instructional content platform that takes authentic content from the world’s most trusted publishers and makes it classroom-ready, launched the Newsela LGBTQIA+ Studies Collection in December 2019. The Collection helps teachers and students incorporate queer topics across Social and Emotional Learning (SEL), Social Studies, and English Language Arts (ELA) learning contexts. The content explores gender identity, intersectionality, marginalization and systemic silencing of the queer community, history of LGBTQIA+ rights in the United States, and cultural contributions of the queer community. In doing so, it suggests ways to take informed action in the advancement of equal rights, representation, and allyship.

Now in its fourth year, the World Changing Ideas Awards showcase 26 winners, more than 200 finalists, and more than 500 honorable mentions—with Health and Wellness, Corporate Social Responsibility, and AI and Data among the most popular categories. A panel of eminent judges selected winners and finalists from a pool of more than 3,000 entries across transportation, education, food, politics, technology, and more. The 2020 awards feature entries from across the globe, from Vancouver to Singapore to Tel Aviv.

Illustrating how some of the world’s most inventive entrepreneurs and companies are addressing grave global challenges, Fast Company’s May/June issue celebrates, among others, an electric engine for airplanes that eliminates emissions from flights—and expensive fuel from the tricky financial calculus of the airline industry; a solar-powered refrigerator that finally frees people in remote villages from daily treks to distant markets, transforming the economics of those households; an online marketplace that connects food companies with farms to buy ugly and surplus produce to fight waste; and an initiative to offset all of the carbon costs of shipping, creating a new model for e-commerce sustainability.

"We're very proud to be awarded this honorable mention for the Newsela LGBTQIA+ Studies Collection," said Jennifer Coogan, Newsela's Chief Content Officer. "Our goal is to support teachers in their need for inclusive instructional content that cultivates a generation of empowered and empathetic global citizens, so we're excited that Fast Company acknowledged it as an inspiration in the education space."

“There seems no better time to recognize organizations that are using their ingenuity, resources, and, in some cases, their scale to tackle society’s biggest problems,” says Stephanie Mehta, editor-in-chief of Fast Company. “Our journalists, under the leadership of senior editor Morgan Clendaniel, have uncovered some of the smartest and most inspiring projects of the year.” 

About the World Changing Ideas Awards

World Changing Ideas is one of Fast Company’s major annual awards programs and is focused on social good, seeking to elevate finished products and brave concepts that make the world better. A panel of judges from across sectors choose winners, finalists, and honorable mentions based on feasibility and the potential for impact. With a goal of awarding ingenuity and fostering innovation, Fast Company draws attention to ideas with great potential and helps them expand their reach to inspire more people to start working on solving the problems that affect us all.

About Newsela

We believe the best instruction starts with the best content. But finding great content that’s engaging, accessible to every student and aligned to teaching standards isn’t easy. Since our founding in 2013, Newsela has been obsessed with taking authentic, real-world content from the most trusted original content providers in the world and turning it into learning materials that are classroom-ready. 


Today, over 2 million teachers and 25 million students in 90% of U.S. schools turn to Newsela for content that’s personalized to student interests, accessible to everyone, aligned to instructional standards, and NEWSELA LGBTQIA+ STUDIES COLLECTION SELECTED AS HONORABLE MENTION IN EDUCATION  attached to activities and reporting that hold teachers accountable for implementation and students accountable for their work. With over 10,000 texts in our library and 10 new texts published every day across 20+ genres, Newsela enables educators to go deep on any subject they choose. Teachers love the structured choice Newsela provides, and administrators love having the assurance that every content choice teachers make is vetted, aligned to standards, and contributing to learning.