The following information regarding the Franklin Project was provided by the SENCLand Chapter and recommended by BG Tom Jones, U.S. Army (Ret.), signatory to the below program description.
Recently, I signed a Pledge in support of Franklin Project, a private initiative sponsored by the Aspen Institute designed to expand civilian full-time national service with the goal of creating the kind of shared experience that our soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines get through their military service. Ultimately, the project is intended to build citizens who have a true stake in America and its future.
I firmly believe that the nation and all Americans would be well served by the success of this effort and are convinced that the military, veterans, and family community can play a significant role in generating support for a culture of national service.
The project was first proposed by General (Retired) Stan McChrystal in 2012 and was formally established in 2013. The basic premise is that national service cultivates the sense of citizenship America needs, and is the best solution to many of the urgent problems the nation faces.
By challenging the nation to create a 21st Century national service system that gives every young person an opportunity to serve the nation, the Franklin Project aims to secure the America's future prosperity and to reenergize the notion of citizenship in way that will bind the rising generation to itself and to the nation.
The specific objective is to create 1 million civilian national service opportunities every year for Americans between the ages of 18 to 28. A 1 million-strong civilian service corps would be on par with the more than 1 million Americans on active duty in our Armed Forces. Ideally, this effort would lead to a future environment where national service – military or civilian - is voluntary, but expected. Ideally, it would become an accepted rite of passage for all young Americans.
I specifically ask that you pledge your support for the project and the support of this big idea, and believe that obtaining the support of a significant number of member of the military, veterans, and family community will send a strong signal to the American public that this is a worthy national objective. Americans in general respect the military community's sense of service. By adding your endorsement you can help generate support and build credibility for this initiative.
To pledge your support, please visit the Franklin Project web site at http://www.franklinproject.org/pledge to lend your voice.
Your signature indicates that you agree with the concepts outlined in the pledge statement. It does not commit you to any other actions.
For additional information on the Franklin Project please visit this website: http://www.franklinproject.org.
BG Tom Jones, U.S. Army (Ret.)