The 2021 Milken Scholars Summit: Charting a New Course

Published 08/18/2021 in Program Updates
Written 08/18/2021

Founded in 1989 by Mike and Lori Milken, the Milken Scholars Program began with a group of 16 Scholars from the A. Philip Randolph High School in Harlem, New York and it has now become a family of over 520 Scholars from more than 200 high schools across Los Angeles County, New York City and Washington, D.C. 

Embodying the Program’s pillars of scholarship, leadership, community service, and character, 19 new Scholars joined over 100 Scholars and Staff at this year’s Annual Summit. With the COVID-19 pandemic still ongoing, Current and Alumni Scholars came together (safely) for a one-of-a-kind 2021 Milken Scholars Summit.  The Summit is the Program’s annual flagship event that brings Scholars together for three days of reflection, connection and engagement.  This year’s event was also 100% virtual, composed of live sessions and panels with guest speakers, that occurred on July 23, 24 and 31. The theme for this year’s Summit was, Charting a New Course, allowing Scholars to engage and reflect on the immense possibilities in these uncertain times.  

The Scholar-led Summit featured 25 Scholars as panelists, speakers and session moderators, highlighting their stories as they shared personal and professional experiences and resources with those in attendance, including but not limited to navigating college, mentoring, and personal finance.  Additional guest speakers included: 

  • Mental Health: Caring for Yourself While Caring for Others 
    • Dr. Tresha Gibbs, MS ‘98, Medical Director of Community Services and Director of Medical Education at New York City Children’s Center – Office of Mental Health; Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons  

  • Charting a New Course for Different Sectors 
    • Milke Milken, Co-Founder, Milken Scholars Program 

  • Blockchain: Charting a New Course to Solve Real-Life Problems 
    • Christine Moy, Global Head, The Liink Network & Blockchain, Onyx by J.P. Morgan 

  • Charting a New Course through Healthcare 
    • Dr. Freda C. Lewis-Hall, MD, DFAPA, MFPM; Life Sciences Leader; Former EVP, Chief Medical Officer, & Chief Patient Officer at Pfizer, Inc.  

Alumni Scholars led evening virtual bonding activities while other Scholars were able to build new relationships and strengthen existing ones through limited in-person gatherings in select cities in accordance with CDC and local public health guidelines. Together, we wish our current Scholars the best of luck as they start a new year of school or work, and look forward to connecting again during our campus visits this fall.