Agenda

 
Meal

8:00 AM -

 8:45 AM


Breakfast

 
Plenary Session

9:00 AM -

 10:15 AM


Freedom of Expression Around the World

Free speech and the open exchange of ideas are both critical to a functioning democracy, and a core component of a rigorous education and the process of innovation. Yet the freedom of expression is not only threatened by repressive governments and institutions around the world, but by a growing resistance to exploring diverging opinions and the unintended consequences of a digital world. The internet has enabled millions of users to generate content and share opinions without traditional gatekeepers or censors, yet it has also given rise to anonymous smear campaigns, the spread of misinformation, and echo chambers of like-minded users. With the freedom of expression comes the responsibility to reject falsehoods, question previously held assumptions, and demand accountability for each other’s words. In this session, panelists will explore how to:

• Develop platforms for constructive dialogue and creative problem solving, where worldviews can be explored without intolerance or ad hominem attacks
• Build peer-to-peer, crowdsourced systems for credible and accurate content delivery, both online and offline
• Combat censorship and ensure the safety of dissidents and journalists in even the most repressive environments around the world

Moderator:

Uzodinma Iweala, Chief Executive Officer, The Africa Center

Panelists:

Susan Herman, President, American Civil Liberties Union, Centennial Professor of Law, Brooklyn Law School
Mai Khoi, Independent Artist and Activist
Julio Martinez, Member, Nicaraguan Platform for Social Movements and Civil Society Organizations
Ben Schwerin, Vice President of Partnerships, Snap, Inc.

 
Skill Session

10:45 AM -

 12:00 PM


Creating Buzz: Using Technology to Expand Your Impact

Beyond a social media profile or an article in the school newspaper, what are some creative ways that CGI U members can increase the visibility of their work? How can the internet expand community engagement and participation with CGI U commitments? This session will explore traditional marketing and media campaigns, along with a wide range of digital storytelling and organizing strategies.

Moderator:

Tiana Epps-Johnson, Founder and Executive Director, Center for Technology and Civic Life

Panelists:

Jean Paul Laurent, Founder & CEO, Unspoken Smiles Foundation
Jacob Tobia, Author & Producer, Putnam Books at Penguin Random House

 

Designing a Meaningful Project

How can CGI U students design effective and impactful projects as they set out to tackle some of the world’s most pressing challenges? Participants in this session will learn to approach commitment design through a community-driven and constituent-informed lens focusing on ideation, program development, and learning and refinement. This session is intended for students interested in mastering critical design practices prior to embarking on project implementation.

Moderator:

Susana Vasquez, Associate Vice President, University of Chicago

Panelists:

Trine Hammershoey, CEO, Headspace Denmark
Hafsah Lak, Project Team Lead, Violence Against Women Centers
Kamau Murray, Founder, XS Tennis and Education Foundation
Vincent Stanley, Director of Philosophy, Patagonia

 

Monitoring and Evaluating Your Results

How can CGI U participants ensure that their commitments are achieving tangible progress and fulfilling their mission? Discussions will explore measurement and evaluation methods that can enhance the quality and effectiveness of commitments, enable attendees to identify potential design flaws, and build upon existing strategies to maximize outcomes and inform future efforts. This session is intended for students looking to use data to inform strategy and improve impact.

Moderator:

Harris Bostic II, Senior Strategy Advisor, Tides Foundation

Panelists:

Amy Carter, Deputy Director, Family Interest Grants, Community & Civic Engagement, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Ruchira Gupta, Founder & President, Apne Aap Women Worldwide
Bob Lord, Chief Digital Officer, IBM
Sara Minkara, Founder & CEO, Empowerment Through Integration (ETI)

 

Raising Money For Your Commitment

How can CGI U students best access and leverage the funding opportunities and resources available to them? Participants will learn to navigate traditional, grant-based funding streams as well as maximize the benefits of online fundraising tools, social media, and other digital marketing platforms. This session is intended for students who want to hone their skills in pitch-making and explore how to establish enduring connections with potential funders.

Moderator:

Phil Weilerstein, President & CEO, VentureWell

Panelists:

Becca Keaty, Chief Development Officer, Bunker Labs
Derrius Quarles, Founder & CEO, Million Dollar Scholar / BREAUX Capital
Andrea Sreshta, Co-Founder, LuminAID

 

Strengthening Organizational Capacity

Limited personnel and organizational capacity can significantly reduce the ability of CGI U participants to carry out their commitments and bring them to scale. This session will introduce strategies for building a staff, managing finances, as well as recruiting, organizing, and retaining an engaged volunteer team. In addition, students will learn how to expand their reach and impact by identifying and securing partnerships with a wide range of campus and community partners.

Moderator:

Jeff Ubois, Senior Program Officer, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Panelists:

Anne Filipic, Chief Program Officer, The Obama Foundation
Mayra Jimenez, Children's Program Director & Managing Attorney, Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES)
Jamila Raqib, Executive Director, Albert Einstein Institute
Justin Luke Riley, President & CEO, Young People in Recovery

 
Networking Event

12:15 PM -

 1:00 PM


Office Hours

Office Hours allow attendees to directly connect with program participants and special guests, who share their personal stories or elaborate on comments made during the panel discussions. Attendees can also share their own questions and thoughts, and seek specific advice on commitments.

Office Hours will take place in Rooms 102, 103, 112, 141, and 146.

Participants:

Chernor Bah, Co-Founder & Executive Director, Purposeful Productions
Kamau Murray, Founder, XS Tennis and Education Foundation
Samantha Paradis, Mayor, City of Belfast, Registered Nurse; Waldo County General Hospital
Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt BVM, Campus Ministry, Men's Basketball Team Chaplain, Loyola University Chicago
Vincent Stanley, Director of Philosophy, Patagonia

 
Meal

12:15 PM -

 1:30 PM


Lunch

 
Networking Event

1:00 PM -

 1:45 PM


Office Hours

Office Hours allow attendees to directly connect with program participants and special guests, who share their personal stories or elaborate on comments made during the panel discussions. Attendees can also share their own questions and thoughts, and seek specific advice on commitments.

Office Hours will take place in Rooms 102, 103, 112, 141, and 146.

Participants:

Liz Dozier, Founder & CEO, Chicago Beyond
Adam Foss, Founder & Executive Director, Prosecutor Impact
Susan Herman, President, American Civil Liberties Union, Centennial Professor of Law, Brooklyn Law School
Mayra Jimenez, Children's Program Director & Managing Attorney, Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES)
Tiffany Verzino, Global Head of Talent Management & Client Services| Global Talent Solutions, The Boeing Company

 
Plenary Session

2:00 PM -

 3:15 PM


Gun Violence in the US: A Case Study in Social Movements

A groundswell of young activists and changemakers have taken the lead in addressing gun violence and increasing opportunity for disenfranchised communities throughout America. From the March for Our Lives to the streets of Chicago, these student leaders have inspired people across the globe, building bridges between unlikely communities who share the common pain of gun violence, and creating tangible impact when many traditional institutions have not. On gun violence and countless other urgent challenges, they are building a social movement that extends far beyond protest alone: foundations, policymakers, businesses, and civic leaders are now coming together under the leadership of students to develop effective strategies and take concrete next steps. Together they are working to address the many underlying factors connected to gun violence, including unemployment, poverty, overdependence on incarceration, mental illness, and easy access to firearms. In this session, panelists and CGI U commitment-makers will explore:

• Lessons learned from a wide range of successful social movements: how they developed clear goals, how they focused on inclusivity, and how they harnessed creativity
• How current anti-gun violence campaigns can move beyond slogans and marches alone: how movements can evolve from awareness to impact, bring people together and leverage the power of advocacy as a tool for tangible results and long-term partnerships
• Digital tools and internet campaigns that can build and support networks of activists, both on and offline

Moderator:

Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair, Clinton Foundation

Panelists:

Tom Barrett, Mayor, City of Milwaukee
Sarah Chadwick, March For Our Lives admin & founder, March For Our Lives
Helene Gayle, CEO & President, Chicago Community Trust
Nza-Ari Khepra, Founder, Project Orange Tree, Co-Creator, Wear Orange Campaign
Joe Plenzler, Gun Violence Prevention Advocate & Volunteer, #VetsForGunReform & The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence

 
Working Session

3:30 PM -

 4:45 PM


Beyond Bars: Addressing Youth Incarceration

On any given day, over 47,000 youth are incarcerated in the US, more young people than in any other country in the world. Among those imprisoned, 73% are for nonviolent offenses and 69% are youth of color. While the overall number of incarcerated youth has decreased since 2001, racial disparities are increasing, with youth of color now five times more likely to be detained or jailed than their white peers. LGBT youth are also overrepresented, encompassing 20% of all youth in juvenile justice facilities while only representing 7-9% of the general population, and are also more likely to be sexually victimized. This overreliance on incarceration not only decreases young people’s chances of high school graduation or college enrollment, but increases risk factors for long-term financial instability, family separation, and adult incarceration. How can schools, community organizations and law enforcement agencies address gender and racial disparities in the justice system as part of broader efforts to reduce youth incarceration and improve outcomes for young people and their communities? In this session, panelists and CGI U commitment-makers will explore how to:

• Break the cycle of the school-to-prison pipeline by addressing “zero tolerance” school disciplinary policies, an overreliance on police in schools, and inadequate educational resources and counseling services for students
• Strengthen violence prevention programs, summer job opportunities, and community-based sentencing alternatives for at-risk youth
• Support systematic change for youth in juvenile justice systems and their families through solutions that improve behavioral, nutritional, mental and physical health outcomes

Moderator:

Liz Dozier, Founder & CEO, Chicago Beyond

Panelists:

Kim Bogucki, Founder, The If Project, Detective, Seattle Police Department
Adam Foss, Founder & Executive Director, Prosecutor Impact
Jens Ludwig, McCormick Foundation Professor and Faculty Director of The crime and Education Labs, University of Chicago
Curtis Toler, Director of Outreach and Recruitment, Chicago CRED

 

Build Back Better: Post-Disaster Recovery in the Caribbean and Beyond

Hurricanes Irma and Maria had a devastating impact on the Caribbean, leaving hundreds of thousands displaced, destroying critical infrastructure and power grids, and disrupting a wide range of local supply chains and social services. In Barbuda, over 90% of properties were significantly damaged, while in Puerto Rico, it is estimated that over 5,000 small businesses still remain closed to this day. In the face of increasingly severe weather and the growing consequences of climate change, it is critical that vulnerable regions around the world build back in a way that ensures recovery and resilience in the face of future storms. How can governments, civil society and businesses work together to build on progress made, expand disaster preparedness, and foster long-term ecological and economic resilience? In this session, panelists and CGI U commitment-makers will explore how to:

• Promote large-scale adoption of renewable energy, hurricane-resistant design, and long-term flood risk reduction through reforestation and wetlands conservation
• Develop effective systems of emergency preparedness and response, while ensuring access to electricity for critical infrastructure such as hospitals, wastewater treatment plants, and transportation networks, both before and after natural disasters
• Enhance the capacity of small businesses and smallholder farmers to withstand future storms and safeguard jobs and livelihoods

Moderator:

Thomas Tighe, President & CEO, Direct Relief

Panelists:

Kathryn Adams, Co-Founder and Executive Director, LIDE
Amira Odeh, Director, Caribbean Youth Environment Network Puerto Rico
Stefan Schaffer, Chief Resilience Officer, Chicago Mayor's Office
Liz Thompson, Barbados Ambassador to the United Nations, Government of Barbados

 

Building Financial Inclusion at the Bottom of the Pyramid

The World Bank has reported that there are approximately 2 billion adults around the world who are unbanked, down from 2.5 billion in 2011. Innovations in mobile money, e-wallets and peer-to-peer lending have increased access to financial services, enabling millions to utilize transaction accounts where they can store money, obtain credit, or send and receive payments. Yet despite these advances, 80% of those living on less than $2 a day are not accessing formal financial services, making it difficult for them to save, plan for the future, start a business, or recover from unexpected emergencies. How can entrepreneurs, nonprofits, governments and financial institutions harness digital advances to expand relevant financial services to those at the bottom of the pyramid and in doing so, increase economic mobility and narrow income inequality? In this session, panelists and CGI U commitment-makers will explore how to:

• Adopt and scale affordable financial services that are designed for low-income users and provide support for first transactions, including face-to-face interactions that can inform new customers how best to use savings and credit products
• Ensure women’s economic participation and greater security and control over their finances by addressing gender, cultural and educational barriers that often restrict their access to financial services
• Open new pathways to financial inclusion by partnering with organizations that are delivering internet and mobile connectivity to hard-to-reach places to expand access to financial services for those living in rural areas and at the last mile

Moderator:

Olivia White, Partner, McKinsey & Company

Panelists:

Tierra Bradford, Community Lender, Accion
Duquesne Fednard, CEO & Founder, D&E Green Enterprises & Savings by Consumption
Parag Mehta, Executive Director, Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth

 

Keeping Adolescent Girls in School

From lower maternal mortality rates to reductions in early marriages and early pregnancies, there are numerous benefits linked to female secondary school enrollment. While one-third of women in the developing world give birth before they are 20 years old, one extra year of secondary school can increase their future annual earnings by over 10%. Yet inadequate sanitation facilities, along with a lack of sexual health and violence prevention education at schools, negatively impacts adolescent girls’ ability to stay in school, and can make girls more vulnerable to sexual harassment and assault. Investing in public health solutions will not only help to address gender barriers to education faced by adolescent girls, but will also positively impact their earning potential, well-being, and the health and education of their broader communities. In this session, panelists and CGI U commitment-makers will discuss how to:

• Improve access to adequate sanitation facilities and private restrooms in schools to better support adolescent girls and to mitigate the risk of sexual violence and harassment
• Provide sexual and reproductive health education in schools to help develop good hygiene practices, increase access to sanitary hygiene products, and combat social gender norms including the widespread stigma of menstruation
• Incentivize and expand access to education for pregnant girls and young parents, with strategies including financial assistance, childcare support, and re-admission programs for teenage mothers

Moderator:

Laurie Adams, Chief Executive Officer, Women for Women International

Panelists:

Chernor Bah, Co-Founder & Executive Director, Purposeful Productions
Shadrack Frimpong, Founder & CEO, Cocoa360
Suhani Jalota, Founder & Director, Myna Mahila Foundation

 

Thinking Critically: Education for Engagement

While emphasis on STEM education and standardized testing continues to grow, knowledge of civics has been declining, with only 26 percent of Americans able to name the three branches of government in a 2016 survey, compared to 38 percent in 2011. A recent national poll of 18- to 29-year olds found that 67% of young people are more fearful than hopeful about America’s future, yet voter turnout remains low among college students, many of whom believe that government all too often stands in the way of creating social impact. In an age of misinformation, political polarization, and growing economic disparities, how do we ensure that young people are equipped with the tools to think critically and enact positive change as civic leaders? How do we empower the next generation with the knowledge and skills necessary to become active and effective participants in a democratic society? In this session, panelists and CGI U commitment-makers will explore how to:

• Address disparities in civics education, particularly among underserved youth in low-income communities, and use action civics as a way for young people to go beyond the classroom and collectively transform their local communities
• Work with educators, organizations and other students to increase political participation - independent of party affiliation - and ensure that college students, a traditionally transient population, have the resources and support to register and participate in elections
• Engage in meaningful, informed dialogue with a wide range of perspectives, discern facts from falsehoods, and understand how to engage with and drive change through the political process

Moderator:

Jessica Marshall, Former Director of Social Science and Civic Engagement of Chicago Public Schools, PhD Student; Northwestern University

Panelists:

Clifton Kinnie, Civil Rights Activist, Founder, Our Destiny STL
Amanda Litman, Co-Founder & Executive Director, Run For Something
Samantha Paradis, Mayor, City of Belfast, Registered Nurse; Waldo County General Hospital

 
Plenary Session

5:15 PM -

 6:30 PM


Closing Plenary

Closing remarks with President Bill Clinton, Secretary Hillary Clinton and Chelsea Clinton.

Moderator:

Helene Gayle, CEO & President, Chicago Community Trust

Participants:

President Bill Clinton, 42nd President of the United States
Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair, Clinton Foundation
Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton, Former Secretary of State

 
Meal

7:00 PM -

 8:30 PM


Dinner

 
Networking Event

7:00 PM -

 8:30 PM


Exchange Fair

The Exchange Fair is a forum for students and sponsors to showcase their organizations or Commitments to Action. This exhibition is an ideal opportunity to learn about commitments, explore partnerships, and network with other participants. Exhibitors will be organized by the five CGI U focus areas: Education, Environment and Climate Change, Peace and Human Rights, Poverty Alleviation, and Public Health. CGI U Exchange takes place on Saturday evening in conjunction with dinner; all participants with an official CGI U meeting credential are eligible and encouraged to attend.