The Dream Project
The Dream Project
Dreaming Big. Dreaming Together.


Connected local communities that share resources and opportunities to ensure ALL students can realize their dreams.


We inspire students to dream big, and we create the connections that will help bring these dreams to life.


We believe there is power in dreaming big.  The Dream Project encourages students to name their dreams and then share them through our website. 

We believe there is magic in dreaming together. We invite community members to partner with students and work together on a project they are both passionate about.

We believe ALL students should have the opportunities and resources they need to pursue their dreams.


It all started when…

The idea for The Dream Project was sparked by participation in Challenge Day, a full day learning experience that invites students, school staff, and volunteer community members to examine their lived experiences, build relationships with one another, and recognize our shared humanity.  While many Challenge Day activities involve reflecting on difficult situations in the past or present, one particular activity asks participants to dream wildly and share these dreams aloud. To dream big. To dream together.

Listening to students communicate their dreams --  photographing foreign countries for National Geographic, touring the country as a renowned DJ, landing a book on the NYT bestseller list -- was inspiring and energizing.  And, it begged the question “what next?” What will help propel students on the path towards these dreams?

Our answer:  The Dream Project:  Dreaming Big. Dreaming Together.  We believe it is essential for youth to cultivate a capacity to dream big, and a willingness to keep dreaming in the face of adversity. We also believe that collaboration is crucial for bringing dreams to life.  Therefore, we work to support students through this radical process of naming their dreams, and to connect them with the people and resources that can help make these dreams a reality.


Our Team


Liz Drogin

Liz has worked in education for over 15 years, including roles in universities, high schools, and nonprofits.  Currently, she serves as a consultant supporting the equity work of schools, school districts, and nonprofits in the Denver area through research, writing, strategy, and facilitation.  

Passionate about social justice and the need for greater civic engagement, Liz spent most of her career teaching community-engaged sociology and writing classes, including at the University of Denver, Duke University, and UC Berkeley.  In 2013 she was recognized as DU’s Public Good Faculty of the Year for her efforts to forge partnerships with nonprofits and local public schools.  Previously, Liz served as Program Director for America SCORES Denver, where she oversaw after-school literacy, sports, and service-learning programming.

Liz holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from UC, Berkeley, and a B.A. in Sociology from Harvard University.  In her free time, Liz loves biking, swimming, hosting dance parties, and enjoying outdoor adventures with her husband and three daughters.


Karyn WinGard-Manuel

Karyn has a passion for creating space where people can experience connection and inspiration. Past and current work includes coordinating a backpack program with Hands Up for the Children that ensures elementary students have wholesome meals beyond the school day; lobbying for Native American health care and domestic violence policy at Friends Committee on National Legislation; serving on the Tangible Love grant committee that invests seed money for non-profit organizations; and teaching college level English to ethnic minority Chinese students in Chengdu, China. 

Karyn holds a MA from Iliff, School of Theology where she studied the connections between theology, our bodies, and social justice and a B.A. in Writing from Graceland University. She enjoys spontaneous get-togethers with neighbors, traveling with her husband and two boys, and sitting next to a campfire while staring at the stars.


Student Advisory Council

The Student Advisory Council (SAC) consists of several participants from The Dream Project’s 2018 pilot at Grant Beacon Middle School. The SAC meets several times a year and provides  student perspectives on topics ranging from strategic visioning to project implementation. SAC members also serve as ambassadors for The Dream Project and helps students and community members understand what it is like to experience this unique opportunity.