State Department Officials Engage Kuwaiti Students
WASHINGTON, Jan. 29 -- Thirty-six Kuwaiti students visited the U.S. Department of State to learn more about how the U.S. is engaging Muslims around the world and to discuss the United States’ relationship with Iran. The students from the National Union of Kuwaiti students are visiting Washington, DC for 10 days, and will spend four days in New York City before returning home. At the State Department, the students met with Karen Chandler, Deputy to Farah Pandith, Special Representative to Muslim Communities, and with John Limbert, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs.
Ms. Chandler discussed the role of the Special Representative to Muslim Communities, and how Ms. Pandith has been traveling abroad to gauge how we can better engage Muslim youth around the world. Mr. Limbert discussed his career experiences, which include serving as the Deputy Coordinator for Counterterrorism, and as a board member of the National Iranian American Council. He also spoke about his first Foreign Service Officer posting at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran in 1979 when it was overrun by Iranian students and he and 50 colleagues were held captive for more than a year. The students from the University of Kuwait were very interested in the organization of the State Department, and how things might change during the Obama Administration, particularly with Iran and other Islamic countries. Comment on Facebook
Coordinator for Economic Initiatives in Latin America Visits Harrisburg, PA
PENNSYLVANIA, Jan. 28 -- Ambassador Charles Shapiro, Senior Coordinator for Economic Initiatives in the State Department’s Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs traveled to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and surrounding areas. He visited the Rotary Club of Carlisle, PA, Penn State Harrisburg, and the Foreign Policy Association of Harrisburg to discuss the U.S. policy in the region and initiatives that promote hemispheric cooperation, such as:
- The Inter-American Social Protection Network
- Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas
- Pathways to Prosperity in the Americas
One rotary member commented about the meeting, “He [Ambassador Shapiro] made about 90 taxpayers happy to support the department and defused the striped pants and cookies vision for a long time if not forever.” In each of his conversations about regional and economic issues, Haiti was a huge topic of interest. Ivey Dejesus of the Patriot News met with Ambassador Shapiro to discuss U.S. assistance following the earthquake in Haiti as well as Free Trade. You can read the article here. Comment on Facebook
Yale Law Democrats Meet with Deputy Secretary of State
WASHINGTON, DC, Jan. 21 -- Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg met with Yale University Law School student members of Yale Law Democrats at the US Department of State. Deputy Secretary Steinberg discussed foreign policy challenges facing the United States. In addition, he encouraged the students to consider a career in public service.
Assistant Secretary for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Visits New York
NEW YORK, NY Jan. 21 -- David Johnson, Assistant Secretary for the State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs traveled to New York to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the Commissioner of the New York Police Department, which would allow the New York Police Department to conduct training programs abroad.
While in New York he also met with Shannon O’Neill, Latin American Scholar from the Council on Foreign Relations and the United Nations Peacekeeping office to foster coordination and collaboration in responding to the situation in Haiti.
He wrapped up his trip to New York with a visit to Fordham University’s School of Law, where he met with a group of 40 students and faculty for a discussion on strengthening criminal justice systems around the world, countering narcotics initiatives, and minimizing transnational crime. Ryan Sylvester, Foreign Affairs Campus Coordinator for Fordham University organized Johnson’s visit to his campus in coordination with his International Law course. INL Answers Facebook Questions on Rule of Law
State Department Hosts Conference Call on Haitian Adoptions in the Wake of the 2010 Earthquake
WASHINGTON, DC, Jan. 20 -- Representatives from various US civil society organizations participated in a conference call addressing Haitian adoptions in the wake of last week’s earthquake. Michael Regan, Director of the State Department’s Office of Children’s Issues began the discussion by explaining his office’s mission and their current efforts to help children in Haiti. The State Department and Department of Homeland Security are working to expedite entry to the U.S. of Haitian children who were scheduled for U.S. adoption prior to the earthquake. Participating organizations included the Haitian American Nurses Association, Haitian Coalition of Summerville, Massachusetts, the City of Boston, and Cambridge Public Schools. More Information on Haitian Adoptions» Interview on the Situation in Haiti and the Adoption of Haitian Children»
State Department, Haitian Community Leaders discuss Relief Efforts in Haiti
WASHINGTON, DC, Jan. 19 – Over 40 leaders of Haitian-American and other non-governmental organizations discussed the situation on the ground in Haiti with Gordon Duguid, Director of the State Department’s Foreign Press Center, via conference call on Tuesday. Mr. Duguid has been in Port-au-Prince during the last several days to coordinate the State Department’s public communications efforts in the wake of the devastating earthquake that struck the country on January 12, 2010.
Mr. Duguid outlined the search and rescue efforts and pinpointed where supplies such as water and medicine are being distributed. Conference call participants shared their concerns about the plight of Haiti’s orphans, the security situation, evacuating American citizens, and pledged their support of the Haitian people. On the subject of the U.S. government response to the disaster, Mr. Duguid remarked, “We are better today than we were yesterday and we will be better tomorrow.” Update on Developments in Haiti (Secretary Clinton, Jan. 20)» Haiti Earthquake page»
Women in Public Policy group visits the State Department
WASHINGTON, DC, Jan. 12 -- A group of 50 women college students from various U.S. universities visited the State Department, as part of the Public Leadership Education Network's (PLEN) annual Women and Public Policy Seminar. Students engaged with Department officials on several foreign policy issues.
Cheryl Benton, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs, discussed U.S. foreign policy priorities and shared insights from her career in the private, political and public sectors; Ruth Bennett and Saba Ghori, from the Office of Global Women's Issues, spoke about Secretary Clinton's commitment to empowering women around the world; Adrienne Bory, India desk officer, discussed U.S.- India relations and her career path in the civil service; and Staci Brothers Ali-Ibrahim, from the Office of Recruitment, concluded the program by answering questions about State Department careers and sharing her own experiences in the Foreign Service.
Development: State Department Hosts Conference Call with Civil Society
WASHINGTON, DC, Jan. 08 -- The US Department of State hosted a conference call with 40 leaders of civil society organizations following Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s January 6th speech on development in the 21st century. Dr. Anne-Marie Slaughter, Director of Policy Planning at the State Department, and Ambassador James Michel, Counselor at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), opened with a brief overview of the Secretary’s speech, emphasizing partnership, not patronage, and went into further detail about development’s role in addressing global issues, such as climate change, hunger, education, and women’s rights.
Call participants represented a variety of organizations, including Action Africa, the Brookings Institution, the Carter Center, the Center for Global Development, the Grameen Foundation, Oxfam America, the Hunger Project, and U.S. Institute of Peace. Participants were excited about the Secretary’s speech and appreciative of the Administration’s new approach to development.
Learning from History and Projecting America’s Image
WASHINGTON, DC, Jan. 7 -- Undergraduate students from Concordia University Texas spent time during their winter break at the State Department engaging with officials on several foreign policy issues. Gordon Duguid, Bureau of Public Affairs, addressed the challenges of representing the United States abroad as well as the Department’s Public Diplomacy efforts around the world. Mr. Duguid also discussed his work overseas as a Foreign Service Officer serving in Zambia and in Burundi.
The group also met with Mark Hove of the Office of the Historian at the Department of State. Dr. Hove outlined the processes for creating the Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) series and how the Department uses history to formulate current foreign policy.
Staci Brothers Ali-Ibrahim of the Office of Recruitment encouraged the students to consider an internship or a career with the Department of State. She addressed questions about the internship application process as well as the requirements for the Foreign Service Officer Test.