Two Generations. One Future.

Ascend at the Aspen Institute is a hub for breakthrough ideas and collaborations that move children and their parents toward educational success and economic security. Ascend takes a two-generation approach to our work – focusing on children and their parents together – and we bring a gender and racial equity lens to our analysis.

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Indigenous Peoples’ Day Is an Opportunity to Reexamine History and Reimagine Our Future


Several cities, states, and municipalities across the US now use the second Monday in October to honor and celebrate Native American history, cultures, and communities. As America grapples with structural racism and the coronavirus pandemic, Indigenous Peoples’ Day offers us an opportunity to reflect on how Native traditions and teachings can offer guidance on how…

New Research Shows Parenting Brain Changes in All Caregivers


Infant and parent brains and bodies undergo rapid growth and transformation during the transition to parenting, presenting a unique opportunity to positively impact two generations. In the 2015 report Two Open Windows: Infant and Parent Biologic Change, Drs. Pilyoung Kim and Sarah Watamura (also an Ascend Fellow) of the University of Denver highlighted research supporting…

Announcing: Ascend Welcomes Inaugural Morgridge Communicator in Residence

Contact: Lindsay Broyhill Ascend at the Aspen Institute lindsay.broyhill@aspeninstitute.org Ascend Welcomes Inaugural Morgridge Communicator in Residence  Washington, DC – Ascend at The Aspen Institute is thrilled to welcome the inaugural Morgridge Communicator in Residence, Danielle Kristine Toussaint. This strategic role was created in partnership with Morgridge Family Foundation and will amplify the stories, impact, influence, and…

RFP Submission Guidelines for the Aspen Policy Acceleration Partnership Grants 

Investing in the postsecondary success of students who are parents is one of the most effective strategies for accelerating their economic and social mobility, addressing longstanding inequalities, and building state and local economies. Public sector agencies and their partners can build supportive pathways for student parents toward meaningful degrees and credentials that lead to careers with better pay and benefits.  …