Youth Ambassadors

Youth Ambassadors is a cultural exchange program designed to strengthen the leadership skills of young people from the Caribbean, Latin America, and the United States. It builds bonds of friendship and understanding between people of the Americas and is sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State.

La aplicación para candidatos de Costa Rica, Guatemala, Panamá y la República Dominicana para el año 2019 está actualmente vigente del 1 al 26 de octubre de 2018.

El programa Jóvenes Embajadores ofrece becas completas para participantes de 15 a 18 años (y adultos chaperones) con el propósito de fortalecer sus conocimientos en las áreas de responsabilidad cívica y emprendimiento social. Para los participantes de los países nombrados el intercambio cultural en los Estados Unidos se llevará a cabo del 22 de enero al 9 de febrero de 2019.

Los criterios específicos para los candidatos son los siguientes:

  • Costa Rica: Los candidatos deben ser estudiantes o maestros del programa ACCESS y residentes del cantón Pérez Zeledón para ser elegibles.
  • Guatemala: Los candidatos deben ser residentes de los municipios de Santa Bárbara o Malacatancito en el departamento de Huehuetenango para ser elegibles.
  • Panamá: Los candidatos deben ser estudiantes o maestros del programa ACCESS y residentes de Chiriquí para ser elegibles.
  • República Dominicana: Los candidatos deben ser residentes de Bonao o Jarabacoa para ser elegibles.

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 Program Goals

The program aims to develop a cadre of young adults who have a strong sense of civic responsibility, a commitment to community development, an awareness of current & global issues, and strong interpersonal leadership skills. Activities foster relationships among youth from different ethnic, religious, and national groups; with the goal of promoting mutual understanding, respect, and collaboration between the United States and our Western Hemisphere counterparts.

In December of 2017, CIED/Georgetown University joined a consortia led by World Learning and including Amigos de las Americas and SUNY Plattsburg, New York to implement the Youth Ambassadors program across the Americas. CIED/GU manages the inbound exchanges of students from Belize, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama and Venezuela, as well as the outbound exchange of U.S. students to the Dominican Republic.

During the three-week exchanges, youth and adult mentor participants engage in workshops, meetings with community leaders, community service activities, interactive trainings, cultural presentations, visits to high schools, local cultural activities, homestays with host families, civic education programming, and more. Program themes of social entrepreneurship, environmental protection, and community development, enhance skills and knowledge and prepare participants for a lifetime of leadership and community service. The exchange agendas include ample time for face-to-face interaction and dialogue which build strong people-to-people connections.

Case Studies

The First Youth Ambassadors Program

A group of 25 Youth Ambassadors participants from Central America meet with American entrepreneurs.

“Tolerance, inter-cultural dialogue and respect for diversity are more essential than ever in a world where peoples are becoming more and more closely interconnected.”

-Kofi Annan

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