In March, 42 students from the SEED Program were selected to attend the prestigious Clinton Global Initiative University (CGI U) in Miami Florida. CGI U is an annual gathering where students, university representatives, topic experts, and celebrities come together to discuss and develop innovative solutions to pressing global challenges. This year’s meeting brought together more than 1,100 students to make a difference in CGI U’s five focus areas: Education, Environment and Climate Change, Peace and Human Rights, Poverty Alleviation, and Public Health.
As a prerequisite of attending the CGI U meeting, students develop their own Commitments to Action: new, specific, and measurable initiatives that address pressing challenges on campus, in local communities, or around the world. Commitments range from manufacturing wheelchairs for developing countries to establishing campus bike share programs, from creating free vision clinics to developing e-learning applications for mobile phones.
Two of the SEED students were selected to participate in a Commitments Challenge to raise money for their projects. Ana Blandon’s Recycling and Education Project and Juan Felipe Romero’s Greenhouse for Jobs & Income Generation raised a combined total of over $4,500. That money will be used to implement their projects in their home countries of Nicaragua and Mexico.
In addition to their commitments, CGI U attendees participated in a Day of Action in the local community with the Miami Children’s Initiative. The SEED students had the unique opportunity to work alongside President Clinton in their community service.
The SEED Program is a USAID sponsored exchange initiative that provides U.S.-based technical training to youth and community leaders. The program creates productive and mutually beneficial academic, economic, and social relationships that benefit people of the United States and the Latin American/Caribbean region.