“Be confident about being a leader”. This is how Sunny, a Chinese high school student visiting the U.S. through a visitor program, described her biggest learning from the leadership training implemented by Meridian International Center in February 2015. Such a comment tells me that this young woman is already a leader and I won’t be surprised to see her becoming a global leader in the next decade and a great pride for her country and parents. In fact, as facilitator of this training, Sunny, Harry and other students were a tremendous inspiration for me. Training high school...Continue
The Afghan Diplomats’ Training Program is an important example of the U.S.-China cooperation and represents a shared interest in the development and stabilization of Afghanistan. Newly appointed diplomats from the Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs are welcomed on a two-part training program, spending two weeks each in the United States and the People’s Republic of China. In its fourth year, the program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Meridian International Center, in partnership with the Public Diplomacy Council, implements the U.S. portion of the program in Washington, DC and a long weekend in New York City.
Not everyone manages to do things they want to do either because of lack of opportunities or giving up in the struggle to achieve greater things in life. At the same time, there are people who turn hurdles and challenges into opportunities by exercising consistence and become more than what they have envisioned. Historically, all great people struggle at the beginning may it be Stephen Hawking, Albert Einstein or Galileo Galilei; however, the times have changed and now it has become easier to identify and support people who are making a positive impact in their societies. International exchange programs...Continue
In May, Meridian launched the Social Innovation Fellowship. This year-long engagement of social entrepreneurs from across Europe will yield community improvement projects in 5 countries (Belgium, Italy, The Netherlands, Poland, and Spain), however the implications will be significant throughout the region as each project addresses overlapping issues. Over the summer we shared some of the individual stories from the fellows’ experience – particularly their impressions and observations from their time in the U.S. (May, 2015). Now that they are back in their own communities, they are working to put into action best practices they learned while here. While each...Continue
While it can be easy to focus on missteps in the history of US foreign policy efforts, working at Meridian International Center has provided me with a window into the long legacy of successful public diplomacy opportunities we create throughout the years on behalf of the Department of State (DOS) and U.S. embassies abroad. For instance, only a handful of individuals have heard about “Jazz Diplomacy” during the Cold War era. Famous Jazz Ambassadors—Quincy Jones, Louis Armstrong, Dave Brubeck, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman, and numerous others—joined forces with the DOS to avert crisis indirectly. Even though the...Continue