Latin American Leaders with the Dream of Creating a Better World | YLAI Guest Blog

Sofia Cruz is a young entrepreneur from Mexico who was selected to attend the 2016 Young Leaders of the America’s Initiative (YLAI) pilot program by the U.S. Department of State. Here are some of her reflections on her experience attending this prestigious U.S.-based exchange. Meridian is excited to implement the Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative Professional Fellows Program on behalf of the U.S. Department of State. In fall 2016, 250 new YLAI Professional Fellows from Latin America and the Caribbean will expand their leadership and entrepreneurial experience through fellowships at NGOs and businesses across the U.S. Visit YLAI.state.gov/fellowship for...

Continue  

Congressional Districts Visited by IVLP Participants in 2015

Each year, in order to track the geographic diversity of our programming, we collect a list of the cities that our visitors see as they travel across the country. Last marked the 75th Anniversary of the International Visitor Leadership Program. Using the list of cities from that year we constructed a map to visually show our visitors travels. Would the data points cluster near the coast or major cities? What if we overlaid it with congressional districts? How would the spread be with red and blue districts? In the following maps we tried to discover the answers to those questions and more and the results might be surprising.

Continue  

Spotlight on Soft Power: May 2016

12th Festival of Pacific Arts Guam, May 22nd — June 4th, 2016   “Håfa Iyo-ta, Håfa Guinahå-ta, Håfa Ta Påtte, Dinanña’ Sunidu Siha Giya Pasifiku” “What We Own, What We Have, What We Share, United Voices of the Pacific”   The Festival of the Pacific Arts (FoPA) has been held every four years since 1972, bringing together artists, performers, and craftsmen from around the Pacific region for two weeks of festivity. It is a major regional cultural event and meeting opportunity in the Pacific, uniting and celebrating its peoples and promoting mutual understanding. The 2016 edition will be hosted by Guam,...

Continue  

Exchange Programs and World Press Freedom Day

Every 3rd of May, the world celebrates World Press Freedom Day to evaluate the freedom of journalists worldwide and to defend attacks on media. In 1993, the UN General Assembly proclaimed this date to act as a reminder for governments to respect their commitment to press freedom and for media professionals to reflect upon ethical issues in their field. Thousands of journalists, writers, activists and leaders recognize World Press Freedom Day as a way to address the main challenges concerning the freedom of information. Meridian’s International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) visitors address this subject matter by engaging in the power of international exchange through different experiences and ideas. Continue  

From Behind The Desk To Changing Lives

Studying abroad is an adventure, and like all adventures, it has critical moments. As I undertook the journey I felt excited but also unsure of what to expect. My adventure began a little more than four months ago when I arrived in Washington, DC, with two suitcases, a study plan, a desire to find an internship and a fixed objective of widening my personal, cultural and professional perspectives. While pursuing my Bachelor’s in International Relations in La Universidad De Los Andes in Bogota, Colombia, I grew increasingly motivated to deepen my knowledge through work experience, and to become a...

Continue