Call for U.S. Young Leader Panelists for MEPI Conference

mepiCIED is looking for accomplished young U.S. leaders (aged 24-30) who can passionately share their civic engagement expertise and real life leadership experiences with young Arab leaders at the MEPI Student Leaders Alumni Conference in Istanbul, Turkey – March 6-13, 2016.


As panelists, you will collaborate with MEPI student leader alumni. This program, sponsored by The U.S. Department of State’s U.S.-Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI), offers an intensive six-week U.S. exchange experience to 120 undergraduate students from the Middle East and North Africa. They develop leadership skills and expand their understanding of civil society and democratic processes. Upon completion of the U.S.-based program, alumni support and implement civic and social engagement programs in their home communities. The professional development conference continues training and support to alumni.

Call for Panelists:

We seek applications from energetic and positive U.S. activists (aged 24-30) to participate as conference panelists. This is a full week commitment. On your first panel, you will share your experiences with the larger group of alumni. On your second panel, you will provide feedback to alumni as they present their projects. Throughout the conference, you will network and engage with alumni to build bonds of collaboration and friendship.

While the program cannot provide compensation to panelists for their time, all travel related expenses (airfare, hotel, meals, visa fees, and airport transfers) will be covered.

Selection Criteria:

  • Resident of the United States (U.S. citizenship not required) and between the ages of 24 and 30 (exceptional older/younger candidates will be considered).
  • Proven record of leadership and accomplishment in public service, political activism, entrepreneurship, community development, or civic engagement in the United States (including volunteer service and mentorship programs).
  • Strong social and communication skills including the ability to work cooperatively in diverse groups and respect the opinions of others.
  • Experience promoting creativity and innovative ideas to solve problems.

Application Instructions and Deadlines:

To apply, please submit a brief bio, your resume, and a short (3 minute) video clip (either attached to the email or available on YouTube) to In your video, introduce yourself and describe your leadership role in a civic, community and/or political project (60 seconds). Tell us why this issue is important to you and what inspires you to stay involved despite challenges and setbacks (60-90 seconds). Finally, include the one most important leadership lesson you would share with the young Arab leaders (30 seconds).

The deadline for submissions is Friday, November 13, 2015. Candidates will be notified of their selection in mid-December. The four selected panelists will work virtually with the Georgetown University team in January and February 2016 to prepare for the conference.

If you have any questions regarding the program or your submission, please contact Christopher Shirley at

Related Program

MEPI Student Leaders Program

The MEPI Student Leaders Program is a U.S. Department of State sponsored exchange program for undergraduate student leaders from the Middle East and North Africa. The CIED-designed curriculum allows students to develop leadership skills and expand their understanding of civil society and democratic leadership.