America Walks Announces Class of 2020 Walking College Fellows
We are thrilled to announce the names of the 25 local advocates who will receive Fellowships to participate in the America Walks’ Walking College program.
This was our most competitive application process to date and we received more than 140 applications. In these challenging times, people-first design, walkability, and the equity issues that follow, have risen to our collective consciousness. We believe this could be one of the most consequential iterations of the program yet.
The 2020 class of the Walking College represents an array of diverse professions and experiential backgrounds beyond those seen in the past – a number of elected officials, along with teachers, physicians, writers and other healthy-community advocates.
We continue to expand our geographic representation of the Walking College with new states added to the mix including West Virginia, Maine and Vermont – expanding the reach of the program and adding new, critical voices to the growing walking movement.
“We are thrilled to welcome this group of passionate community leaders who are working to support walkable communities in urban, suburban, and rural neighborhoods throughout the country,” said Emilie Bahr, Walking College Manager with America Walks. “These fellows will learn from one another and talented mentors over the next six months to craft plans to expand their walkability work at home while activating local, state, and national change.”
The Walking College curriculum has been designed to expand the capacity of local advocates to be effective community-change agents. Fellows will complete a six-module distance-education program this summer and fall, covering the science behind the benefits of walking, evaluation of built environments, as well as communication skills and building relationships with decision makers.
Fellows will propose Walking Action Plans from the rigorous self-study and deep collaboration from mentored instructions and intimate team problem-solving. They will also be encouraged to take part in local, regional and national conferences related to walking and walkability to network and learn from other advocates. We expect these will all be remote opportunities this year.
The 2020 Fellows are:
Travis Allen, DeKalb County, Atlanta, GA suburb
Bradley Cruice, Lafayette, LA
Sheldon Benally, Shiprock, NM (Eastern Navajo Agency)
Kent Walker, Cowen, WV
Want to learn more about the Walking College? Watch this video: