E-Newsletter Special: Year in Review

Published 12/10/2018 in E-Newsletter Articles
Written 12/10/2018



Dear Friends of the Milken Scholars Program,

We are pleased to share with you the inaugural version of our annual e-newsletter, The Scholar.  Inside you will find links to various articles—some written by our Milken Scholars Program Staff and others written by our Milken Scholars.  We hope these uplifting stories add some merriment to your holiday season!

The year 2018 was a fantastic one for our Program.  We kicked off the New Year with a community service event at the Los Angeles Foodbank, where Scholars and Staff helped deliver 6,000 meals for the hungry.  In the months of February and March, our Staff worked with 22 Guest Readers and 25 Alumni Scholars to review over 500 applications for the 2018 selections process.  We ultimately selected 25 New Scholars, including six from New York City, four from Washington, DC, and fifteen from Los Angeles County. 

In the spring, our Staff traveled across the country to conduct Campus Visits with Scholars at over thirty schools.  In addition, ten of our Alumni Scholars attended the 2018 Milken Institute Global Conference, where they rubbed shoulders with some of the world’s foremost leaders in private, public, and nonprofit sectors.  In June, we welcomed our New Scholars from New York City and Washington, DC, with Recognition Dinners at the Grand Hyatt and The Mandarin, respectively.  At these awe-inspiring events, our New Scholars delivered heartfelt speeches thanking their loved ones for making their journey possible.   

In July, we held our LA Recognition Dinner as well as our Annual Summit—our flagship event where Current Scholars attend workshops led by Alumni Scholar facilitators during an extended weekend of career-based reflection and learning.  Top-notch special guest speakers included Brian Sheth, Co-Founder and President of Vista Equity Partners; Dr. Vivienne Ming, Co-Founder of Socos Labs; Javon Frazier, Executive Vice President, Business Development and Strategy at Studio71; Dr. Richard Merkin, President and CEO of the Heritage Provider Network; Barnaby Marsh, a Visiting Scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton University; Alissa Finerman, Gallup Certified Strengths Coach; Rishi Garg, Partner at the Mayfield Fund; Ralph Finerman, Senior Vice President of the Milken Family Foundation; and, of course, Michael Milken, Chairman of the Milken Institute.  Also at this year’s Summit, we held our first-ever Alumni Induction, where we formally welcomed 25 graduating Scholars into our ever-growing Alumni movement. We were so happy that Joni Milken-Noah, Vice President of Mike’s Math Club, and Mariano Guzman, Director Emeritus of the Milken Scholars Program, were our featured speakers at this inaugural Alumni event.

This past fall, our Program Staff conducted another round of Campus Visits, once again traveling across the country to visit over 100 Scholars.  Our Staff also conducted several worksite visits with our Alumni, stories of which are featured on our website.  In November, four of our esteemed Alumni Scholars—Chinweze Ahaghotu, ’96; Kim Foo Chow, ’96; Diana Hong, ’99; and Francis Poon, ’07—organized an Alumni Reunion in New York City with workshops led entirely by fellow Alumni Scholars, including Khadijah Sharif-Drinkard, ’89; Stephanie Esenwa, ’97; Dan Vazquez, ’98; Michael Terry, ’00; and Rashan Jibowu, ’02. 

As we close out the month of December, we want to wish a warm thank you to all of our friends who have contributed to our Program throughout the year—whether as Readers during our selection process, special guest speakers during the Summit, or as mentors to individual Scholars.  If you would like to get more involved in 2019, simply contact me at amichaels@milkeninstitute.org.


Happy Holidays!

 A. Michaels Signature

Andrew Michaels

Associate Director, Milken Scholars Program