Building Leaders while Building with Blocks

11 Jul 2022 Group of Minecraft Educators

A Look at the Global Minecraft Student Ambassador Program

If you build it, they will come. No truer words have been spoken and this is true for the Minecraft Student Ambassador Program (MSA). Our team is still on cloud nine after recently completing Cohort 1 of the MSA program, which included two groups. Each group included three amazing sessions (at 12pm EST and 7pm EST) with over 150 educators from around the world and culminated with a live Bootcamp Orientation for Minecraft Student Ambassador Sponsors and Minecraft Student Ambassadors from around the world. Educators and students from every continent were represented in Cohort 1. To say that we were blown away with excitement would be an understatement!

You may be asking yourself, what is the Minecraft Student Ambassador Program and how can I become a sponsor and bring this program to my school or district. We are glad you asked! The Minecraft Student Ambassador (MSA) program is the flagship Minecraft student leadership and training program endorsed by the Minecraft Education team. It is designed for K-12 students who have a passion for Minecraft and a willingness to support, train, and mentor fellow students and teachers at their school or district using Minecraft: Education Edition. Through this program, MSAs (Minecraft Student Ambassadors) provide Minecraft assistance in the form of demos, training, leading small groups, one-on-one sessions, or additional support as needed.

The Minecraft Student Ambassador program is a win-win for students and educators alike because it provides students with an opportunity to grow and develop leadership and 21st-century skills by doing something they already enjoy doing. The program also provides educators who may be uncomfortable or intimidated with using Minecraft: Education Edition in the classroom with an added layer of onsite Minecraft support. A Minecraft Student Ambassador (MSA) is a student leader with a passion for Minecraft and a willingness to support, train, and mentor other students and teachers at their school or in their school district using Minecraft: Education Edition.

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A few years ago, we shared a blog about the Minecraft Student Ambassador Program that we created in our district (Atlanta Public Schools) to get our Minecraft experts—our students—to support, train, and model the use of Minecraft Education Edition for teachers and fellow students in Atlanta Public Schools. To learn more about our journey read this blog: Minecraft Student Ambassador blog post or watch this video: Atlanta Public Schools: Minecraft Student Ambassador Program. Now, fast forward to spring 2022, we have replicated our program and transformed it into the official Global Minecraft Student Ambassador Program which allows educators to sponsor their own program in their school or district. We have created a Minecraft Student Ambassador Program Pathway that walks educators through the process of creating their own program. This course is currently available in the Microsoft Learn Educator Center. You can complete this Learning Pathway to become a certified Minecraft Student Ambassador Sponsor.

For educators interested in starting an MSA program in your school or district, we encourage you to either complete the learning path or join the next cohort happening in the fall. The benefits of joining the cohort include:

  • Opportunity to engage with fellow educators from around the world as you begin this journey.
  • Opportunity to interact with our team as we share our journey, assist you with creating your program, answer any questions you may have, or help you work through some problems you may encounter.
  • Opportunity for you and your students to participate in a live Bootcamp and engage with the Minecraft Education Team.
  • Opportunity to participate in ongoing meetups to collaborate and share tips with fellow MSA sponsors.
  • Finally, your Minecraft Student Ambassadors will have the opportunity to participate in future bootcamps/meetups and engage with the Minecraft EDU team.

Here is what some of the Cohort 1 participants had to say about the program:

  • “It was a fantastic course, I liked how the sessions supported the online course.”
  • “Thank you for sharing all your wisdom on how you built your amazing program. I am hopeful that we can have both District Ambassadors and that some schools will also have Ambassador programs.”
  • “Combining online professional development with the learning modules was a terrific way to participate and to be accountable.”
  • “The resources provided cover all the questions that I had about starting an MSA program at my school.”
  • “These ladies are on FIRE! Their knowledge, passion, and experience were extremely helpful for all learning groups.”
  • “I think it's an amazing way to show students and parents how gaming can be educational in and out of the classroom.”
  • “Every session was GREAT!”
  • “I really appreciate you all giving us everything we needed to get our club up and going!!”
  • “Excellent content and fabulous host/sponsors with lots of energy and great vibes each week.”

Thank you for allowing us to share our passion with you. We hope to see you in the next Minecraft Student Ambassador Cohort as we continue to “build student leaders while building with blocks.”

Felisa, Melissa, Natasha, Rosalyn, and Tommy 💚

Minecraft Student Ambassador Cohort Facilitators