The Corps Network Contributes to Conversation on “Reimagining National Service”

[Banner Photo: Texas Conservation Corps at American YouthWorks]

How do national service programs help our country? How can these programs evolve to meet the changing needs of our people, communities, and environment? On Tuesday, May 4, The Corps Network’s President & CEO, Mary Ellen Sprenkel, joined policymakers and national service experts to answer these questions and more during a virtual discussion hosted by the Brookings Institution and Service Year Alliance. A purpose of the event was to mark the release of a new report by Service Year Alliance, “Reimagining National Service: A Roadmap to a Service Presidency,” which offers a guide to the Biden administration on proposed steps to help make national service an opportunity for all young people in America.

“I am very grateful to all of the Corps and the thousands of young people that risked their own health to help their communities deal with the pandemic,” said Mary Ellen Sprenkel, speaking on how Corps adapted during COVID-19. “And they also continued to complete the service projects they do to improve access to outdoor recreation and mitigate the impacts of climate change, which were equally important as more people sought to get outside and recreate safely.”

Click here to watch the full event, which, in addition to Ms. Sprenkel, featured the following speakers (in order of appearance).

  • John Allen, President, The Brookings Institution
  • Tyra Mariani, President – Schultz Family Foundation
  • Sonali Nijhawan, Director – AmeriCorps State and National
  • Josh Fryday, Chief Service Officer – California Volunteers
  • Jaime Ernesto Uzeta, Chief Executive Officer – Public Allies
  • Wes Moore, CEO, Robin Hood
  • Jesse Colvin, CEO, Service Year Alliance
  • Isabel Sawhill, Senior Fellow – Economic Studies, Center on Children and Families, Future of the Middle Class Initiative, Brookings Institution
  • Fiona Hill, Robert Bosch Senior Fellow – Foreign Policy, Center on the United States and Europe, Brookings Institution
  • Martha Ross, Senior Fellow – Metropolitan Policy Program, Brookings Institution
  • E.J. Dionne, Jr., W. Averell Harriman Chair and Senior Fellow – Governance Studies, Brookings Institution
  • Peter Wehner, Senior Fellow – Ethics & Public Policy Center, Brookings Institution
  • The Honorable Jack Reed (D-RI), United States Senate