IYLEP for high school students is sponsored and funded by the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad and the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Youth Programs Division, and administered by World Learning and Meridian International Center.
Program Introduction and Application Instructions
The Iraqi Young Leaders Exchange Program is a four week youth leadership exchange based in the U.S. for Iraqi and American teenagers ages 15-18 and several Iraqi adults. The program aims to develop a cadre of young adults in Iraq and the United States who have a strong sense of civic responsibility, a commitment to community development, an awareness of current & global issues, strong interpersonal leadership skills, willingness to foster relationships among youth from different ethnic, religious, and national groups in Iraq, and to promote mutual understanding, respect and collaboration between the United States and Iraq. Participants will be required to implement follow-on activities upon their return home that will help the participants stay in touch with each other and reflect on their experiences and integrate that learning into their day-to-day lives at home. An important goal of the program is that the student leaders, now empowered, will train other student leaders through student led community oriented service projects.
The goals of the program are to:
1) enable the participants to understand civic participation and the rights and responsibilities of citizens in a democracy;
2) develop leadership skills among high school students and adult leaders appropriate to their needs;
3) foster understanding and build relationships across ethnic, religious, and national groups; and
4) promote mutual understanding between the people of Iraq and the U.S.
What is covered?
There is no application fee for applicants.
The United States Government, in conjunction with its private partners, will pay for international transportation to and from the United States, orientations, program and visa fees and administration, site visits and seminars, lodging and meals, some cultural activities, educational materials, accident and sickness insurance, and a modest amount of pocket money. Participants will stay with volunteer host families and in conference centers.
Participants are responsible for expenses related to the application process (copying, mailing, photographs, etc.), passport fees, and spending money for souvenirs and other items in the United States.
Who is eligible to apply?
Student applicants must:
What are the criteria for selection?
Students will be evaluated on the following characteristics:
Applicants who can answer yes to either of the following statements are not eligible to apply.
Required Documents to be submitted with the Application
The online application will ask you to upload the following documents:
Individuals that make it past the initial application review by our panel will be contacted for an interview in January or February 2012;
Due to large quantity of applications received, it is not possible to inform all applicants of their status. Thus, applicants can assume that they were not chosen if they have not been contacted by the hosting organization by February 2012;
Applicants will be assigned to a U.S. hosting organization by random selection;
To apply to IYLEP, please click on the Online Instructions tab at the top of this page.
Thank you for your interest in the program and good luck with your applications!