By Mark Edwards Executive Director, Opportunity Nation
It’s not secret that today only six percent of children born to parents at the bottom of the socio-economic ladder make it to the top. In fact, studies now show children in many European countries have greater economic mobility than those in the United States.
These statistics tell us that the American Dream our country was built upon is at risk and in need of a significant jumpstart.
Enter Opportunity Nation. Over the past two years Opportunity Nation has forged a bipartisan, cross-sector coalition of more than 250 partner organizations, including United Way, to help accelerate economic mobility in America. They’ve hosted regional opportunity summits on college and university campuses across the country; met with dozens of elected officials to sound the alarm about the declining mobility in our country; and are engaging with political candidates across the divide about the role they can play in advancing mobility.
This September, Opportunity Nation will host its second national Summit in Washington, D.C. to shine a spotlight on one of the earliest and most critical rungs on the ladder of opportunity: ensuring that the rising generation is equipped with the skills needed to compete in the current and future economies.
More than 1000 thought-leaders, elected officials, journalists, academics, and others from across the political spectrum will debate Opportunity Nation’s shared plan of action to restore opportunity and economic mobility in America. And the campaign will unveil the 2012 Opportunity Index, showing which areas of the country have improved – or declined – in providing opportunities to their residents.
The Summit’s proceedings will be webcast live online. To learn more about Opportunity Nation, the September 19th Summit, and the live webcast, please visit www.opportunitynation.org/summit.