Aspen Junior Seminar

Aspen Junior Seminar reunites approximately 20 young leaders, 20 to 24 years old, active in academia, volunteering and with a proven leadership potential.


  • to promote and advance leadership within society among youth;
  • to develop a network of Aspen Junior Alumni.

The Seminar is built on the Aspen method and offers participants a non-partisan space of dialogue and interaction that gives them the opportunity to debate and question their values. The seminar lasts 4 days (starting on a Thursday afternoon and ending Sunday mid-day).


Candidates aged 20 to 24 are asked to submit an updated CV and a letter of motivation. Their applications are evaluated from 1 to 5, according to the following characteristics: Motivation, Initiative, Vision, and Overall Leadership Potential. The evaluators are members of the Aspen team and representatives of our partners.


  • the working language: Romanian
  • ~ 70% of the texts are constant, following the structure of the standard reader for the Aspen Seminar for Leaders – Defining the Good Society; ~ 30% of differ from year to year, depending on the choices of the moderator and on the relevant topics of debate in the society at that specific time.


  • members of the Aspen community who went through the Aspen Moderators Seminar

Former moderators

  • Madalina Mocan

Madalina Mocan is currently a PhD student in Political Sciences at Babeş-Bolyai University, (Cluj-Napoca) and associate teaching assistant. She has previously served as executive director of Ratiu Center for Democracy in Romania. Her current research interests relate to the role of national and international donors and grant givers in Romania’s civil society public agenda setting. A graduate of Babes Bolyai University, Faculty of Political Sciences, where she has also obtained an MA degree in “Management of Political Organizations” she maintains an academic and civic interest in human rights theories, multicultural policies, and transparency. She is involved in several initiatives aiming at understanding and combating human trafficking. She is an alumna of the Aspen Institute Romania Young Leaders program (2009), German Marshall Transatlantic Fellow (2014) and serves as a board member of Tech Soup Romania and ANBCC (National Alliance of Citizens’ Advisory Bureaus. She is passionate about good stories, great ideas, and horseback riding.

  • Oana Marinescu

Oana Marinescu is the founder and managing director of OMA Vision, a strategic communication and public affairs consulting company. To Oana OMA Vision is her most important and challenging professional project – one which naturally follows a career built up solely through developing complex projects and taking on daring challenges. An expert in strategic communication for the political, diplomatic and high-level institutional environment, Oana creates and implements communication, PR & public affairs strategies with vision and credibility. She opens up new perspectives for positioning, action and growth, both for people and companies, treating the process as a privilege and a calling. Due to a heightened sense of situational and contextual awareness, Oana has set off in the last decade a refreshing long-awaited change to the Romanian landscape of public debate, policy making, public perception and cross-cultural understanding. For her the question is never who’s going to let me, but who’s going to stop me now.

  • Roxana Voicu-Dorobantu

Roxana Voicu-Dorobantu is currently an Associate Professor in the Bucharest University of Economic Studies in Bucharest, while being involved in other business projects as well, mostly in an advisory position. Roxana holds a Ph.D. in International Business and Economics and has taught international business and finance and risk management in United Kingdom and Poland, as well as Romania. While involving companies in various corporate social responsibility programmes, she is also interested in finding means and methods for increasing efficiency in multicultural teams. She is an Aspen Institute Romania Young Leaders Program fellow (2008).

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