Welcome to the Ashoka Fellowship!
11 American social entrepreneurs will today join the ranks of Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia, and Muhammad Yunus, Grameen Bank, and become a part of Ashoka’s Fellowship.
They come from across U.S - Georgia, Maine, Ohio, California, Massachusetts, the District of Columbia, and New York – and between them; these 11 game changers are transforming the way we think about health, education, financial wellbeing, housing, the environment, transportation, government services, and Internet freedom.
We’ll be writing more about their unique ideas and systems changing approach to problem-solving in the weeks to come.
I encourage you, to take a look at their ideas and share their work with your community. One of our main goals is to ensure these solutions can reach many more people facing the same set of problems. More here:
The quote Laura’s elegantly referring to here is the one on the cover of the booklet which is a bit of a mantra within Ashoka.
Hence, the real fish. The booklet that’s on the photo is within Ashoka simply referred to as the “fish booklet - you know, the one that describes Ashoka’s impact”. We’ll have a new edition out later this year and people are still debating wether or not the fishes should stay on for another year.
Missed the discussion? Catch the summary on Storify.
It’s panel week again—that means the Ashoka DC office is in a flurry of activity and potential Ashoka Fellows are walking in and out throughout the week for various interviews. We love this meme and accompanying article by intern David Iwanowski about the selection process for Ashoka Fellows.
Are you a change-maker?
Video created by the Summer Associates on the US Team: Anne Von Petersdorff, Alice Goresbeck, Natalie Dance and Wendi Oppenheim.
Top 3 Reasons Panel Is Not Like Hunger Games
(1) Candidates Aren’t In Competition
Not only are candidates not competing with each other to the death, they’re not competing with each other at all. There are no quotas; no “slots.” Let me repeat: fellow candidates are not competiting with each other.
(3) Panel is Not Nationally Televised
While panel isn’t a secret—you’re reading about this important step in the selection process on a public blog—panel is an internal affair. The very human “who-will-make-it?” question that makes The Hunger Games (and The Bachelor, and Survivor, and much of reality TV) so addictive, it absolutely antithetical to the ethos of panel. All candidates who make it this far in the process are incredible changemakers, thinkers, doers, and leaders. At this point in the game, whether they become Ashoka Fellows has to do with their fit with our specific selection criteria.
(3) Dystopia has no Role Here
The dystopian vision of the future that is the backdrop of The Hunger Games couldn’t be further from conversations that happen at panel. These are conversations about how the future can be more equitable, more just, and more efficient. Correction—these are conversations about how candidates are, today, making the present world more equitable, more just, and more efficient.
How many interviews does it take to make an Ashoka Fellow?
Lunch break is around the corner as the fourth round of today’s interviews comes to a close. This morning 6 candidates working in a smorgasbord of fields—from remaking manufactured housing to reinventing primary care in the US, to creating schools that work with rather than against new immigrants—have sat in hour-long conversations about their big ideas. Leading those conversations are panelists of equally diverse backgrounds: an Ashoka Fellow; an Ashoka colleague; a director of a national “think-do-invest” tank dedicated to increasing economic opportunity; a leader in human-centered consulting. Special thanks to colleague Hanae for powering through the combinatorics problem of figuring who meets whom, when and where.
Welcome to your first Ashoka Selection Panel! Today I’ll be live blogging from the event, walking you through what is the (very nearly) final step in the process of selecting new leading social entrepreneurs to the Ashoka Fellowship. Above is a glam shot of the binder we give panelists (more on panelists later) stocked with everything panelists need to know about the candidates they’ll be interviewing throughout the day.
- Laura Z