Firestone Fellowship

The Firestone Fellowship Fund honors Charles M. Firestone, director of the Communications and Society Program from 1989 to 2020, and his commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion over the course of his fifty year career in communications policy. The Aspen Institute Firestone Fellowship Fund, previously the Guest Scholar Scholarship, is an initiative meant to give students of color the opportunity to foster their professional and academic career in the field of media, innovation and technology policy. Each year doctoral (or other advanced graduate program) students of color are invited to apply for a Fellowship to attend an Aspen Digital roundtable or event.  The program first began in 2001. 

This year we are offering fellowships to three outstanding doctoral (or other advanced graduate program) students of color to participate in 2020 Aspen Digital project: 

  1. Communications Policy Project: This Project will explore content moderation and how information is discovered, consumed and shared. 
  2. Roundtable on Institutional Innovation: This Roundtable explores the impact of technology on people, institutions and work at the intersection of technology.  
  3. Tech & Talent Project: This Project promotes greater equity in the technology workforce and helps stakeholders learn to better diversify their workforce to be more inclusive of women and communities of color. 

As a Firestone Fellow, students are full participants in roundtable discussions or events. Fellows have the opportunity to gain a better understanding of competing tensions on important issues and gain a network of professional colleagues. The dialogue gives the Fellows a chance to meet industry leaders at an early, yet critical, stage in their careers. More importantly, individuals will become a part of a community of Firestone Fellows in which they can communicate, collaborate and engage, and have the opportunity to connect with other participants as they begin their professional lives. 


Fellow’s will attend all dialogue sessions as a full participant in the discussion. She or he will be expected to read the pre-dialogue materials provided. The fellow will also be asked to write a blog for the Aspen Digital Program on a topic of interest after the event.

  • The student should have a clearly defined interest in the event as evidenced by published papers, previous work experience, a major research project or dissertation on the project topic.
  • The Firestone Fellow should be a U.S. resident and a minority student, based on the definition of minority created by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission: African American, Hispanic, Asian, Pacific Islander, American Indian or Alaskan Native.
  • Currently enrolled in a Ph.D. or other advanced graduate program at an accredited college or university; and have attained a cumulative GPA of 3.3 on a 4.0 scale (un-weighted).
  • Applicants must provide a statement of interest.
  • Applicants must provide one reference (name, title, phone number and email).
  • Applicants must provide an unofficial copy of transcripts from currently enrolled university.
  • Applicants must commit to attending the entire event.
  • Applicants must write a blog after the event.

Monday, June 1, 2020




If you have any questions, please contact Dominique Harrison, Ph.D. by email at

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