Miami Dade College Will Host the 2017 Ashoka U Exchange to Educate and Empower Communities of Changemakers

Miami, Feb. 7, 2017 – Miami Dade College’s (MDC) will host the 2017 Ashoka U Exchange, an important annual gathering that showcases new models of social innovation in higher education.  Taking place from March 2-4, this year’s Exchange will include 750 participants from 150 colleges and universities across the country. The first two days of the conference will take place at the Hilton Miami Downtown and the third and final day will be held at MDC’s Wolfson Campus.

The Ashoka U Exchange is a program of Ashoka U, an organization dedicated to transforming higher education into a tool for social innovation. Over the course of three days, the 2017 Exchange will offer more than 100 workshops, panels, keynotes, curated lunch conversations and site visits to some of South Florida’s most vibrant neighborhoods in order to see social innovation in the making – neighborhoods such as Little Havana, Little Haiti, Miami Beach, Liberty City, and Homestead.

This year, the conference agenda will focus on three key pillars of leadership critical to transform higher education into a tool for social impact: Developing Individual Skillsets to Lead Transformative Change, Learning and Implementing Programmatic Innovations, and Advancing Social Innovation as a Field In Higher Education.

Awarded the designation of “Changemaker Campus” in 2015 by Ashoka U, MDC fosters professional development, social mobility and civic participation that enriches the workforce readiness toolkit of its students along with the changemaker mindset and skillset needed for 21st century challenges. Through the Innovation Meets Purpose and Change in Teams (IMPACT) Network, a college-wide team of lead faculty, staff, and administrators, MDC contributes to Ashoka’s vision of an “Everyone is a Changemaker” world.  In aligning the curricular and co-curricular opportunities within both the two and four year degree pathways at MDC, we are transforming the college experience so that our students cultivate the will and skills needed to make meaningful differences in their local communities.

About Ashoka U
Ashoka U is an initiative of Ashoka, the world’s largest network of social entrepreneurs. Building on Ashoka’s vision for a world where Everyone is a Changemaker, Ashoka U takes an institutional change approach to impact the education of millions of students. Ashoka U helps break down barriers to institutional change and fosters a culture of social innovation in higher education. Ashoka U’s global network of 150 colleges and universities is advancing an education that develops interdisciplinary, entrepreneurial, and solutions-oriented skills.

About Ashoka
Founded by Bill Drayton in 1980, Ashoka has elected and supported over 3,000 Fellows – social entrepreneurs with innovative solutions to society’s most pressing social problems – in over 70 countries. Ashoka’s support includes start-up financing, professional support services, and connections to their global network of Ashoka Fellows. Ashoka envisions an “Everyone a Changemaker” world, capable of responding quickly and effectively to social challenges, and in which each individual has the freedom, confidence and societal support to address any social problem and drive change.

About Miami Dade College
Miami Dade College is the nation’s largest institution of higher education with an enrollment of more than 165,000 students. It is also the nation’s top producer of Associate in Arts and Science degrees and awards more degrees to minorities than any other college or university in the country. The college’s eight campuses and outreach centers offer more than 300 distinct degree pathways including several baccalaureate degrees in education, public safety, supervision and management, nursing, physician assistant studies, film, engineering, and others. In fact, its academic and workforce training programs are national models of excellence. MDC is also renowned for its rich cultural programming. It is home of the Miami Book Fair International, Miami International Film Festival, the MDC Live! Performing Arts Series, the National Historic Landmark Miami Freedom Tower and Museum, a sculpture park and a large art gallery and theater system. MDC has admitted more than 2,000,000 students and counting, since it opened its doors in 1960.

WHAT:            2017 Ashoka U Exchange

WHEN:           Thursday – Friday, March 2 – 3, at Hilton Miami Downtown

Saturday, March 4, at MDC Wolfson Campus

WHERE:        Hilton Miami Downtown, 1601 Biscayne Blvd.

MDC Wolfson Campus, 300 N.E. Second Ave.                                                                                          

For more information, please contact Sandra LaFleur, MDC Social Change Initiatives Director, at 305.237.7825,