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Past Event

Webinar: Strengthening the civic fabric of the nation

Past Event

Civic engagement and service are critical to the well-being of the nation, especially at a time of intersecting crises stemming from institutional racism, economic inequities, and a pandemic. Today, many Americans are eager to contribute to the public good, but are unprepared or simply uncertain about how to get engaged.

Widespread and robust civic education and service from a young age could be a solution to the problem, helping foster an ethos of service, bringing people and communities together, expanding opportunities, and strengthening American democracy. At the same time, the promotion of civics and service learning — starting in elementary school all the way through college — could be a catalyst in making service the norm. Americans would no longer ask one another if they served, but would instead ask where or how they served.

On June 9, the Foreign Policy program and the Center for Universal Education at Brookings hosted a webinar to highlight the role of civic education and service in invigorating civic life and in addressing critical domestic and national security challenges. Brookings Senior Fellow Fiona Hill moderated a conversation between Reuben E. Brigety II, incoming vice-chancellor and president of the University of the South; Avril Haines, commissioner at the National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service; Jonathan Koppell, dean of the College of Public Service and Community Solutions at Arizona State University; as well as Brookings scholars Andre M. Perry, Richard Reeves, and Rebecca Winthrop. Questions from the audience followed the discussion.


Panel discussion

Reuben E. Brigety II

Incoming Vice-Chancellor and President - The University of the South

Former Dean, Elliott School of International Affairs - George Washington University

Former U.S. Ambassador to the African Union

Avril Haines

Commissioner - National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service

Nonresident Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy - The Brookings Institution

Deputy Director - Columbia World Projects

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