Announcing: Ascend and JED’s Mental Health Partnership for Student Parents


Contact: Alexis Williams Ascend at the Aspen Institute alexis.williams@aspeninstitute.org   Ascend at the Aspen Institute and The Jed Foundation Announce Partnership To Develop a Mental Health Framework Focused on Students who are Parents Based on results from a literature review released today, leaders will develop evidence-based resources and expert-informed recommendations to address the mental health…

Parents’ Voices 2020: Focus Group Findings


This fall, Ascend at the Aspen Institute launched the Parents’ Voices 2020 Project, the next step in our longstanding effort to cut through the national noise and ask parents directly for their hopes, dreams, challenges, and solutions. With a strategic and intentional focus on racial and gender equity, and an expanded definition of family structures,…

The Secret Sauce: Strategies to Include Social Capital in Human Services


Social capital is the “secret sauce” of the two-generation (2Gen) approach. It manifests itself as increased peer support and a sense of community; connections to family, friends, and neighbors; participation in community and faith-based organizations; school and workplace outreach; leadership and professional development programs; engagement with case managers or career coaches; and other social networks…

Our Collective Challenge and Opportunity Has Never Been Greater 


This letter was shared with our Ascend Fellows, Network Partners, and community.  Hello Ascenders:    Today is exactly one week since nearly 160 million Americans cast their vote. This will go down as one of the most historic and hotly contested presidential elections our nation has ever seen. In the face of unprecedented challenges, people, especially Black, Brown and Indigenous…

Family Prosperity: 10 Minutes with a Leading Early Childhood Researcher on Home-Based Care and Opportunities Ahead


Earlier this year, Ascend launched the Aspen Family Prosperity Innovation Community, our initiative for breakthrough innovations and collaborations that position families to reach educational success, economic prosperity, health and well-being. As we look toward 2021, opportunities and challenges abound for work-family supportive policies – namely, the future of child care. More than ever, families are…

Hear How Single Moms are Thriving in College


Postsecondary education and employment pathways are core components of the two-generation (2Gen) approach. This commitment to educational success and economic security is of the utmost importance to single mothers pursuing a postsecondary degree or workforce credential to create a better future for themselves and their children. These topics are explored in Roadtrip Nation’s (RTN) documentary…