Letter: Lecture on service for young adults | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Lecture on service for young adults

At 4 p.m. Tuesday, Laura Lauder will speak at the Woody Creek Community Center at CPS Lectures #96: “A Year of National Service for All Americans Ages 18-28: The Franklin Project of the Aspen Institute.” She will share her thoughts about a bold, new transformative and long overdue idea: A voluntary year of national service for every young American between the ages of 18 and 28. The Franklin Project envisions a future in which a paid year of full-time national service in an array of areas, including health, poverty, conservation or education is a cultural expectation, a common opportunity and a civic rite of passage. The initiative aims to have 1 million young Americans each year complete a civilian service year by 2023.

While the benefits to the communities being serviced are obvious, imagine how profoundly a service year will benefit the young providers. Working in a community, often very diverse from the ones they know, could well alleviate economic, racial and political divides. A year of service also will prove to be transformative and will garner young Americans invaluable experience, communication skills, realistic expectations and the opportunity to discover both their talent and passion, making them better and more conscious Americans.

The need for such an initiative is as acute as volunteering by young people (especially the Millenial generation) is at an all-time high, and young Americans want to step up and serve their communities and country. It is time for us as a society to take an evolutionary leap forward both by giving our young people the opportunity to serve, and by calling upon them to be responsible for working toward one goal: that of the country’s common good.

Lauder’s talk is co-sponsored by CPS Lectures, a program of The diaTribe Foundation, a San Francisco Bay Area 501c3, and the Woody Creek Community Center. It is free and open to the public — we believe many in the Roaring Fork Valley could play vital roles, particularly as potential participants, host organizations, or sponsors of this vital new initiative. The Woody Creek Community Center generously underwrites these programs and we give particular thanks to Emily Taylor, community leader extraordinaire, for making this possible.

The first five people to show up will receive a free copy of Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal’s recently published “Team of Teams” — McChrystal leads the Franklin Project Leadership Council, which is is comprised of inspiring leaders across a wide range of fields including national service, business, defense, media, politics and education. The Woody Creek Community Center also is offering $1 off every glass of wine purchased at the event. We hope to see you at Woody Creek on Tuesday to learn more about how the Franklin Project aims to increase Americans’ engagement to serve their community. The Roaring Fork Valley exemplifies so much of this vision — we offer you an exciting opportunity to learn more!

Kelly Close

The diaTribe Foundation