The Iraqi Young Leaders Exchange Program (IYLEP), funded by the Embassy of the United States in Baghdad, and implemented by the Academy for Educational Development, enables fifty outstanding undergraduate students from Iraq to attend an intensive academic summer program at a U.S. host university. Each student will participate in a fully funded six-week program that includes classroom instruction and active educational opportunities related to one of two themes: social media or public policy. Institutes will focus on these themes and their expression in contemporary American life, as shaped by historical and current political, social, and economic issues.
Each program also includes a leadership component and an educational travel experience within the United States, integrating academic study with practical learning opportunities and community engagement. Students will gain a great understanding of the United States as they explore the role and influence of key principles and values in American society, such as democracy, rule of law, individual rights, freedom of expression, equality, diversity, and tolerance. Participants will begin their program in Washington, D.C. for an initial introduction to the program and cultural orientation, and conclude in New York City, highlighting the lessons learned and preparing students to utilize their leadership skills when they return home to Iraq. The grant will cover all program expenses, including travel, accommodation, funding for academic materials, and health insurance.