Advocacy Day

For 15 consecutive years, Alliance members have descended on Washington, DC, in the spring to engage their Senators, Representatives, and their staff members on behalf of international exchange. For international exchange programs to continue to flourish, policymakers in Washington need to hear from their constituents about the value of exchanges in communities across the United States.

At right, 2014 J-1 Advocacy Day participants Jasmin Mejia (Spirit Cultural Exchange), Lauren Coffaro (CCI Greenheart), and April Bakke (Spirit Cultural Exchange) with Illinois Senators Dick Durbin (D) and Mark Kirk (R).


2018 Advocacy Day


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2017 Advocacy Day


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2016 Advocacy Days


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2014 Advocacy Days 


After the success of our new format in 2013, the Alliance again held two separate Advocacy Days in 2014: Appropriations Advocacy Day (Feb. 26-27), focused on funded State Department exchanges, and J-1 Advocacy Day (April 30-May 1), focused on unfunded J-1 visa exchange programs. 

Both events were very successful and Alliance members educated a lot of congressional offices about the importance and power of State Department educational and cultural exchange programs.

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2013 Advocacy Days 


In 2013, for the first time, the Alliance convened two Advocacy Days in Washington:

  • An Appropriations Advocacy Day (February 27-28, 2013); and
  • A J-1 Advocacy Day (May 1-2, 2013) 

By staging two Advocacy Days, we hope to increase our Congressional reach and deliver clearer, more specific messages to the Hill to support both grant and J-1 programs. 


2012 Advocacy Day

For the 12th consecutive year, the Alliance convened its members for a concerted advocacy effort on behalf of international exchange programs. The Alliance’s annual Advocacy Day—February 29 and March 1 in Washington, DC—featured 72 participants from 26 member organizations, representing 25 States and the District of Columbia. They visited 94 Congressional offices and, while most everyone met with legislative staff members handling foreign policy issues, a handful of participants actually got to speak with their members of Congress.
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2011 Advocacy Day

With the 112th Congress embroiled in a bitter budget battle, the outcome of which could have a significant impact on international exchange programs, Alliance members came out in record numbers for our 11th annual Advocacy Day—96 participants from 26 Alliance member organizations, representing 30 states and the District of Columbia (all new Advocacy Day highs), participated in this yearly trip to Capitol Hill.
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2010 Advocacy Day

With a record number of participants—83—the Alliance held its 10th annual Advocacy Day on Thursday, March 4. Alliance members participating in this year’s Advocacy Day visited 104 House and Senate offices and represented a record 26 states, as well as the District of Columbia.
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2009 Advocacy Day

The Alliance held its ninth annual Advocacy Day on Thursday, February 26, 2009. Seventy-one Alliance members participated in this year’s Advocacy Day, visiting 73 House and Senate offices, and representing 18 states, the District of Columbia, and Guam.