Youth Initiatives

Main page content

Whole Child Initiative

The Whole Child Initiative (WCI) is a program that transforms schools by creating safe, positive, engaging, equitable and effective learning environments to help all kids succeed.  This program is a partnership agreement between UW Tacoma and the Tacoma School District.  The purpose of this initiative is to increase academic excellence, school safety, and social and emotional learning within the Tacoma School District.

July 2017 - June 2020

1.  Strategic planning and expertise
2.  Professional Development (co-developing and co-leading)
3.  Coaching and support (for school teams and district staff)


Action Mapping Project (AMP)

AMP Tacoma 2019

The Action Mapping Project (AMP) is a youth-oriented and community-based project in Tacoma, Washington that fosters neighborhood change through data production, education, and direct action.

AMP conducts annual activities that include 1) mapping and data collection with thousands of middle-school and high-school aged youth in Tacoma Public Middle and High Schools, 2) GIS instruction and professional development at AMP Centers in Tacoma High Schools, and 3) neighborhood scale planning and action activities (AMP Camps) in Tacoma neighborhoods.


Data produced by AMP reflect the everyday experience and perceptions of neighborhoods by youth down to the sub-block scale. Collected via sketch-mapping workshops in middle-schools and high-schools, AMP data are analyzed and modeled to identify opportunities to improve neighborhood livability for youth. Data are shared publicly via reports, community dashboards, and raw files on the AMP website.

Partners: Tacoma Public Schools, Metro Parks Tacoma, Tacoma Pierce County Health Department


Working in partnership with Tacoma Public Schools, AMP is establishing community mapping and GIS Centers (AMP Centers) in the five comprehensive high schools that serve the City of Tacoma. High school students who join AMP earn credit toward their diploma by completing the AMP curriculum and the Next Move internship curriculum.

Partners: Tacoma Public Schools, Communities in Schools


AMP Camps are summer programs designed to motivate neighborhood-scale action based on AMP data. At AMP Camps neighborhood action projects are identified, conceptualized, and planned in a collaborative and participatory process that includes residents, youth, professional placemakers, architects, engineers, construction firms, and key agencies and stakeholders. Neighborhood action projects are expected to result in small improvements to the neighborhood that reflect the priorities and experience of local youth (e.g. improvements to parks, streetscapes, public spaces, lighting, walkability, etc.)

Partners: Tacoma Public Schools, City of Tacoma, Metro Parks Tacoma, Tacoma Pierce County Health Department, United Way Pierce County, Goodwill Industries, Safe Streets Campaign, McGranahan Architects