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JOIN THE NEXT GENERATION OF FREE EXPRESSION ADVOCATES

PEN America is committed to empowering a new generation of free expression advocates and building a youth advocacy network that can work together to facilitate positive change. We regularly invite students to support and engage in our national and international advocacy efforts, and actively seek ways to amplify and encourage students’ own free expression advocacy projects.
PEN America Youth Advocates lead vigil for Ukraine
Next Gen PEN America

Get notified about Next Gen PEN America opportunities:

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Upcoming Opportunities

Free Expression Essay Competition

Free Expression Essay Competition

PEN America is inviting submissions for a national student essay competition about the role of free expression in today’s world. If you’re in high school or college, PEN America wants to know what you think about the threats to this crucial right!
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Free Expression Leadership Fellows Program - Spring 2023

Free Expression Leadership Fellows Program - Spring 2023

PEN America is offering a 14-week professional Free Expression Leadership Fellows Program for undergraduate and graduate students passionate about human rights, the written word, and free expression in the United States and worldwide. Applications are currently closed.
Free Expression Advocacy Institute – Spring 2023 – Online

Free Expression Advocacy Institute – Spring 2023 – Online

PEN America’s Spring 2022 Free Expression Advocacy Institute is an intensive, online, eight-week, educational and training program where high school and college students can learn the theories, laws, histories, and methodologies behind free expression advocacy. Applications are currently closed.
Freedom to Read Advocacy Institute Spring 2023 - Online

Freedom to Read Advocacy Institute Spring 2023 - Online

PEN America and Brooklyn Public Library are offering an online, four-week educational and training program for high school students to prepare them to combat book banning and fight for the freedom to read in schools, libraries, and communities across the country.
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Free Expression Leadership Fellows Program - Summer 2023

Free Expression Leadership Fellows Program - Summer 2023

PEN America is offering a 14-week professional Free Expression Leadership Fellows Program for undergraduate and graduate students passionate about human rights, the written word, and free expression in the United States and worldwide. Webpage coming soon.
Free Expression Advocacy Institute – Summer 2023 – Los Angeles

Free Expression Advocacy Institute – Summer 2023 – Los Angeles

PEN America’s Summer 2023 Free Expression Advocacy Institute in Los Angeles is an intensive week-long educational and training program where high school and college students can learn the theories, laws, histories, and methodologies behind free expression advocacy.
Learn More
Free Expression Advocacy Institute – Summer 2023 – New York City

Free Expression Advocacy Institute – Summer 2023 – New York City

PEN America’s Summer 2023 Free Expression Advocacy Institute in New York City is an intensive week-long educational and training program where high school and college students can learn the theories, laws, histories, and methodologies behind free expression advocacy..
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Free Expression Advocacy Institute – Summer 2023 – Washington DC

Free Expression Advocacy Institute – Summer 2023 – Washington DC

PEN America’s Summer 2023 Free Expression Advocacy Institute in Washington, DC is an intensive week-long educational and training program where high school and college students can learn the theories, laws, histories, and methodologies behind free expression advocacy.
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We're on LinkedIn!

This LinkedIn group is for former fellows, interns, and students of PEN America to stay in touch.

Studentsattpfrally

Events

PEN America at the Fall 2022 Augustana Symposium Day

WedOctober 122022
Free Event In Person
On 10/12, PEN America travels to Augustana College for Symposium Day to deliver Keynote and Workshop on Civil Discourse.

Let’s Say Gay! Picnic and Play

FriJune 242022
Free Event
PEN America and the Artists at Risk Connection “Let’s Say Gay! Picnic and Play” will celebrate LGBTQ+ literature and activism during Pride.

[VIRTUAL] Free Speech Live!: Art Against Oppression

WedJune 92021
Webinar
With artists taking risks to counter oppression, how can young people engage in advocacy and activism to support the right to artistic freedom?
See more

Past Guest Speakers

Kirill Artemenko

CEO, Paperpaper
Nora Benavidez headshot

Nora Benavidez

Director, U.S. Free Expression Programs New York, NY

Amanda Bennett

Pulitzer Prize-winning Author and Journalist

Neijma Celestine-Donnor

Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, University of Maryland-Baltimore School of Social Work

Troy Closson

Metro Reporter, The New York Times

Alex Gino

Author and Activist

Hadar Harris

Executive Director, Student Press Law Center

Dr. Faizullah Jan

Journalist, Dawn Newspaper

David Kaye

Clinical Professor of Law, UC Irvine

Amna Khalid

Associate Professor in the Department of History, Carleton College
Mai Khoi headshot

Mai Khoi

Artist and Activist

Julia Rose Kraut

Author

Susan Kuklin

Author and Photographer

Frank LoMonte

Director, Brechner Center for Freedom of Information
Writers at Risk Database

Wa Lone

Journalist, Reuters

Paul Muldoon

Poet

Fallon McClure

Georgia State Director, Spread the Vote
Ahmed Naji

Ahmed Naji

Author

Rikki Nathanson

Senior Advisor, Global Trans Program, OutRight Action International

Solomon Collins Nkulinga

Program Assistant, Disability Rights Fund and the Disability Rights Advocacy Fund
Achiro Patricia Olwoch

Achiro Patricia Olwoch

Writer, playwright, and filmmaker

Gregory Pardlo

Author and Poet

Daniel Alejandro Pinilla

Journalist, Human Rights Advocates Program at Columbia

Rachel Sanchez-Keneally

Government Liaison and Program Coordinator, IOM

Emerson Sykes

Staff Attorney, Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)

Bakary Tandia

Co-Founder, The Abolition Institute

Mary Beth Tinker

Vladimir Tlali

Director, New York State LGBT Human and Health Services Network

Laurence H. Tribe

Carl M. Loeb University Professor and Professor of Constitutional Law, Harvard Law School

Bukeni Waruzi

Executive Director, Free the Slaves