This month, Best Buy Teen Tech Center® members from across the country will see their original artwork on display across a new line of PopSockets PlantCore™ grips. The collection features twenty-two phone grips, designed by teens, that are exclusively available online.
Through the Best Buy Foundation design program, youth worked alongside PopSockets professional mentors to create their very own PlantCore™ grip, an expanding and collapsing plant-based phone grip that functions as a stand and provides drop protection.
For the new capsule, teen members of the program were asked to center their creativity and design ideas around what “building brighter futures” means to them. The designs range from youth empowerment to tackling social justice issues.
One of the teen designers, Jaylee Williams, experimented with several designs and topics including women’s rights and other historical events in history. Her design, ‘One Earth, One Chance,’ features an Earth that is crying while melting because of the impact of global warming.
“Originally, my first idea was to make a design that conveyed the idea of gender or racial equality,” she said. “I was really thinking [about my design] and came to the sense that we wouldn’t be able to fight for all of these things that are going on right now if we don’t have a planet to live on.”
A portion of sales from each grip sold will be donated to the Best Buy Foundation and reinvested into Best Buy Teen Tech Center programs, safe after school learning spaces for youth to create, learn and explore using the latest cutting-edge technology.
Designs for a cause
The Best Buy and PopSockets partnership was established in 2021 to support youth in disinvested communities with access to the tech skills and career resources they need to thrive. For each grip designed, Teen Tech Center members are fairly commissioned and compensated through PopSockets’ process for freelance designers, giving teens a chance to experience first-hand the journey from ideation to having their designs sold by both brands.
“We are proud to empower teens to design products for the causes they care about,” said Mollie Ganser, Sr. Marketing Manager of Social Impact and Lifecycle at PopSockets. “Partnering with Best Buy and their incredible Teen Tech Center program demonstrates the power of two brands coming together for good and helping youth recognize their own potential to make a lasting, positive change.”
This marks the fourth collection to come from the partnership which first launched during Black History Month in 2021, when four teens were matched with mentors from PopSockets to design grips that would be sold as a part of Best Buy’s Black History Month campaign. The program continued to expand with more teens designing phone grip lines for LGBTQIA+ Pride Month and Latinx Heritage Month. In 2022, the mentorship program won a Halo Award for “Best Jedi (Justice, Equity, Diversity And/Or Inclusion) Initiative”.
Learn more about Best Buy Teen Tech Centers, here.