The Franklin Project is a new venture by the Aspen Institute, which envisions a future where a year of full-time national service — a service year — is a cultural expectation, a common opportunity, and a civic rite of passage for every young American. A young person would discharge his or her national service obligation by either serving in the military or as a civilian by completing a full-time service year through programs such as Teach for America, AmeriCorps or the Peace Corps. For a service year, a small living allowance is provided, so that all young Americans have opportunities to serve. The service year would be completed at some point between the ages of 18-28.

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute is based in Washington, DC; Aspen, Colorado; and on the Wye River on Maryland's Eastern Shore. It also has offices in New York City and an international network of partners. For more information, visit www.aspeninstitute.org.