The Power of Youth: Prudential Emerging Visionaries Program

Every year, the Prudential Emerging Visionaries program celebrates the creativity and innovation of young people who are striving to solve financial and societal challenges in their communities. This national program recognizes 25 young leaders between the ages of 14 and 18, providing them with up to $15,000 to dedicate to their passion projects. In addition, the winners are given the opportunity to visit Prudential’s headquarters in Newark, New Jersey, where they receive valuable coaching, skills development, and networking opportunities with mentors.

One of the inspiring winners of the 2023 Prudential Emerging Visionaries program is Sydnie Collins, an 18-year-old from Maryland. Collins has taken her passion project, a podcast called “Perfect Timing,” to new heights with the support and resources provided by the program.

During the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, when social media became a dark space flooded with news, Collins recognized the impact it had on her own mental health. Determined to combat this negativity, she created “Perfect Timing” as a safe platform to promote youth positivity, celebrate achievements, and combat mental health stigmas. Through 109 episodes, Collins has interviewed a diverse range of guests, from young influencers to nonprofit leaders, reminding Gen Z that their dreams are within reach.

But Collins’ mission extends beyond inspiring content. She has expanded her efforts to host events and speak at summits and workshops, passionately advocating for underserved youth. One of her memorable moments was raising $7,000 to take 200 underserved girls to see the opening weekend of “The Little Mermaid,” spreading the message that they are enough and that they have someone supporting them.

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Funding for “Perfect Timing” has primarily come from Collins’ own pocket, but with the support of the Prudential Emerging Visionaries program, she plans to invest in upgraded recording equipment, expert producers, and skill-building classes to further enhance her abilities as a host and public speaker. The program’s funding will also allow her to lease an office space with a live audience, providing an even more engaging platform for her podcast.

Through interactions with the other Prudential Emerging Visionaries and her Prudential employee coach, Collins has gained confidence in her ability to make a larger impact. She has discovered that her network extends beyond the realm of podcasting and journalism, thanks to industry leaders who are willing to share their expertise, time, and financial support. As Collins herself said, “It only takes one person to change, and two people to expand that change.”

If you know a young person between the ages of 14 and 18 who displays bold vision and is actively pursuing their dreams, encourage them to apply for the 2024 Prudential Emerging Visionaries program. Apart from the potential to receive up to $15,000 in awards, winners and a parent or guardian are given an all-expenses-paid trip to Prudential’s headquarters. Additionally, ongoing coaching and skills development are offered to help participants grow their projects.

To learn more about the Prudential Emerging Visionaries program, click here. Applications for the program’s 2024 cohort are due on November 2, 2023. Don’t miss this incredible opportunity to make a positive impact and turn dreams into reality.