Light poured through the parted curtains, framing the podium while the speaker made his way across the floor. In solemn silence he paused for a moment before facing the assembled crowd. Outside in the garden the leaves were falling, marking the passage of a warm autumn day. His face was worn and chiseled. His hair was brushed but also tussled. He had a beard but no mustache. President Lincoln began to speak, “Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are...Continue
A recent IVLP project from Poland, “Educating about Holocaust-related Issues,” exhibited the power of unexpected encounters during exchange programs. Some professional appointments are more predictably impactful than others, but you can never calculate what will happen when strangers meet for the first time. Typically, the conversation ends when the visitors depart for their next meeting, however, one encounter forged an unlikely connection between one former white supremacist and five Polish visitors from the site of one of the world’s most tragic events.
Over 1,000 advocates, political leaders, and non-profit executives gathered in New York City on September 23rd for the 10th annual Clinton Global Initiative, where they witnessed President Obama illustrate America’s commitment to empowering and supporting civil society. In the President’s speech, he highlighted the extraordinary work of three International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) participants, Sopheap Chak of Cambodia, John Gad of Egypt, and Miriam Canales Flores of Honduras, for pushing forward their missions during perilous times. They are champions for human rights, fighters for at-risk youth, and artists using their talents to strengthen civil society.
Eleven alumni from the Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) were reunited in Washington, DC yesterday for a timely discussion of the transatlantic relationship. Three members of the group sat on a panel at the Delegation of the European Union to the U.S. along with David Mark of Politix and a representative from the Atlantic Council. The alumni were Edmundas Jakilaitis of Media 3 Television Production in Lithuania, Eric Bo Axel Sundstrom of Sweden’s on-line progressive newspaper Dagens Arena and Aikaterini Sokou of Kathimerini, Greece and Cyprus’ largest daily broadsheet.
If you’re looking for a place to partake meaningful dialogue with Europeans leaders, you might want to try North Dakota. Earlier this summer, 15 young European leaders and professionals mingled with local residents in the small, but growing, town of Minot, North Dakota. The European visitors participated in a United States Department of State International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) project, administered by Meridian International Center. The purpose of the project was for these young leaders to witness and converse about current political, social, and economic issues in the United States. and similar issues faced by their home countries. Why...Continue