past event
K-12 Education

Aspen Challenge: Philadelphia | Opening Forum

The Aspen Challenge—a program of the Aspen Institute founded in partnership with the Bezos Family Foundation—has teamed up with the School District of Philadelphia to implement the Aspen Challenge: Philadelphia with students and educators from 20 high schools throughout the city. The Aspen Challenge kicks off with a daylong youth leadership development forum where teams of students and teachers will hear from leaders pioneering change to some of the world’s most pressing issues. Leading industry experts will present a challenge, urging the students to create an innovative solution. The program culminates on March 29 when teams will present their solutions to a panel of judges. Three winning teams will travel to the Aspen Ideas Festival in Aspen, CO, to present their work.


  • Questlove, Drummer, DJ, producer, culinary entrepreneur, designer, New York Times best-selling author, and member of The Roots
  • Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, oncologist, bioethicist; chair at Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at the University of Pennsylvania
  • MK Asante, professor, author and poet
  • Reverend Jeffrey Brown, coalition builder and founder of RECAP (Rebuilding Every Community Around Peace)
  • Komal Ahmad, founder and CEO of Copia, a company working to eradicate hunger and food waste
  • JT Reager, earth scientist, NASA Jet Propulsion Lab
  • Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO, National Constitution Center


11:25 AM: Reverand Jeffrey Brown

12:05 PM: Jeffrey Rosen

12:45 PM: DeRay Mckesson



Event information
Wed Feb 1, 2017
8:00am - 7:30pm GMT+0000
Ballroom at the Ben
Philadelphia, PA