In the summer of 2015, the Millennium Campus Network (MCN) hosted its 7th annual Millennium Campus Conference (MCC)—MCC15—at the United Nations (UN) Headquarters in New York City. The most impactful MCC yet, MCC15 allowed over 450 student leaders and change-makers from over 50 countries to connect, learn, and amplify a generation’s voice. The Jenzabar Foundation helped by providing scholarships to 95 student leaders to participate in the 5-day conference.
Founded in 2007 by student leaders Sam Vaghar and Seth Werfel, MCN’s mission is to “train the next generation of global development leaders to rethink the paradigms that perpetuate inequality, promote a human-centric and collaborative approach, and transform dialogue into action.” MCN offers programs that they say are “comprehensive and geared toward building the skills and experiences future leaders will need to increase their impact and solidify their career path.” These programs also nurture essential values such as empathy, humility and service. Upon these principles, MCN created MCC, a thriving conference for young world-changers.
During MCC15, attendees engaged in workshops, small group discussions, debates, and keynote plenaries with international leaders and activists including H.E. Mr. Mogens Lykketoft, the President of the United Nations General Assembly; Dr. Vanessa Kerry, Founder and CEO of Seed Global Health; Dr. Jeffrey Sachs, Director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University; Richard Stengel, Under Secretary of the U.S. Department of State; and Lakshmi Puri, Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations.
Keynote speaker Shin Fujiyama, Co-Founder & Executive Director of the Students Helping Honduras, inspired attendees, saying, “After staying up late reading multiple books, there was one inspiring message the books all had in common: ‘Ordinary people can make a difference in the world!’”
MCC15 attendees had the opportunity to join prize-winning campaigns on global challenges launched at the conference. In addition, The Jenzabar Foundation convened university administrators and national organization leaders for a special Institutional Track, and Jenzabar Foundation Executive Director John Beahm honored Terry Crews, Hollywood actor and gender equality activist, at the annual MCC awards ceremony.
Jenzabar Foundation scholarship recipient, Ruthfirst Eva Ayande, shared that, “As a master’s student from a low-middle income country interested in equality, education, and environmental sustainability, MCC15 was an initiation into a lifetime career in advocacy in those three areas. This was especially because the conference’s themes revolved around the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that were recently adopted by all member states of the United Nations.” Another recipient, Taylor Kate Mills, said, “MCC15 inspired me to discover potential in myself that I previously did not even know I was capable of…I left the conference grateful, humbled, and excited for a future where I and my peers will all work together in improving a stronger global society.”
For over six years, The Jenzabar Foundation has had the honor of supporting MCN. The Jenzabar Foundation has provided MCN with office space since May 2010. Jenzabar Foundation founder Bob Maginn serves on MCN’s Board of Advisors and Executive Director John Beahm serves on the Board of Directors. The Jenzabar Foundation has even connected MCN with influential friends such as Dr. Kevin Ross, President of Lynn University, who now serves on MCN’s Board of Directors. Additionally, several of the student groups in the MCN network have received Student Leadership Awards from the Jenzabar Foundation.
To learn more about MCC15 at the United Nations and other MCN programs, visit the MCN’s webpage at http://www.mcnpartners.org/. To learn about MCC16 at the Howard University in Washington D.C., taking place August 1st-5th, please visit http://www.mcc16.org.