Department of State news
Yesterday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with a group of secondary school students and teachers from Bosnia and Herzegovina who are currently participating in the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs’ 12th annual delegation of the Youth Leadership Program.
In her remarks at the Exchange 2.0 Summit on Tuesday, Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Judith McHale spoke about the “peace-building power of intercultural understanding” and stressed the need for integrating connective technologies into the U.S.’ exchange efforts.
On April 26, the Department of State published in the Federal Register an interim-final rule revising the regulations for the Summer Work/Travel program. The rule carries a 60-day public comment period, and takes effect July 15.
The Department’s case for the need for new regulations and for moving directly to an interim-final rule includes the following points:
The Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) recently posted on its website the biography of Ms. Lee Satterfield, the new Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Professional and Cultural Exchanges.
After six months of negotiations, Congress finally passed an appropriations bill for the remainder of FY 2011. Yesterday the House passed H.R. 1473, a continuing resolution (CR) to fund the federal government through September 30, with a vote of 260-167 (59 House Republicans voted against the bill, including 28 of the 87 freshmen, while 81 Democrats voted in favor). The Senate then passed the bill, with a bipartisan 81-19 vote. The legislation will go to the President today for his expected signature.
Jim Doumas, Executive Vice President and Interim CEO of Sister Cities International, testified this morning in front of the House Appropriations State-Foreign Operations Subcommittee, speaking in support of Department of State international exchange programs. Specifically, Doumas called for the subcommittee to fully fund the President’s FY 2012 budget request of $637.1 million for State exchange programs. Doumas noted:
At the U.S.-China Consultation on People-to-People Exchange (CPE) with Chinese State Councilor Liu Yandong yesterday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spoke about the two countries’ conviction to increase people-to-people engagement and further exchange programs such as the 100,000 Strong initiative.
The House and Senate Appropriations Committees released today details of the continuing resolution that will fund the remainder of FY 2011. In this bill, Department of State international exchange programs will receive a cut of $35 million, or 5.5 per cent, from the FY 2010 enacted level of $635 million, for an appropriations level of $600 million for the remainder of FY 2011.
According to the House Appropriations Committee, all non-defense accounts are slated to receive an additional 0.2 per cent across-the-board cut.
In her opening remarks at the Second Annual U.S.-China Consultation on People-To-People Exchange, Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Judith McHale outlined three goals for this two-day summit in Washington.
During a House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations hearing on U.S. international broadcasting yesterday, Ranking Member Russ Carnahan (D-MO) stressed the importance of international exchanges as programs of public diplomacy. Public diplomacy, Carnahan noted, is “a critical and indispensible component of U.S. foreign policy” and “can, and should, also be cost-effective.”