Exchange Visitor Program

Secretary of State John Kerry and Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky announced a new partnership to support the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program by helping send more students to study abroad. In remarks delivered yesterday at the U.S. Institute of Peace, Secretary Kerry highlighted the importance of public-private partnerships to help increase global interconnectedness and mutual understanding:  

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President Barack Obama addressed 350 emerging leaders at a summit in Laos last week as part of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI). The President announced new initiatives in the region, connected with the youth from countries members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), and highlighted the role of educational exchanges for leadership development and U.S.-ASEAN relations.

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The number of exchange visitors and international students in the United States has increased by 5.4 percent since July 2015, according to data published in a quarterly report by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The number of J-1 exchange visitors in the U.S.

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In a foreign policy address at Youngstown State University yesterday, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump proposed implementing extreme screenings and ideological testing for visa applicants, as well as a temporary suspension of visa processing from regions with a history of terrorism. Trump defended these new vetting mechanisms as a way to prevent any sympathizers of terrorist groups or those with hostile attitudes towards the United States from entering the country.

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International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) participants are contributing to U.S. counter-terrorism efforts through the State Department’s P2P: Challenging Extremism initiative, according to a recent article in Vice News.

Join the Alliance, Global Ties U.S., and our collaborating partners at our January 27 Exchanges Matter event – a high-level discussion of the critical role international exchange programs play in advancing peace and security.

Sessions will examine issues including the impact exchanges have across the U.S., how to harness the private sector to advance America’s public engagement objectives, and the role exchanges play in building mutual understanding and advancing U.S. foreign policy priorities.

Nearly 300 au pairs participating in the State Department exchange program traveled to Washington, D.C. last month as part of a course on U.S. culture and history, according to a recent article in PBS.

Exchanges will play “a unique and critical role” in the normalization of U.S.-Cuban relations, Assistant Secretary for Educational and Cultural Affairs Evan Ryan said in her opening remarks for a symposium at George Washington University on Wednesday.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump called for the termination of the J-1 visa program in an immigration policy proposal recently published on his campaign website, Bloomberg Politics reports.

In response to political unrest in Yemen and concerns for their safety, a group of Yemeni exchange students have received a waiver to complete an additional year of studies in the U.S., according to a listing in the Federal Register last week. The students were participants in the Department of State’s Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) program during the 2014-2015 academic year.

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