The International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) is the U.S. Department of State’s premier professional exchange program. Launched in 1940, the IVLP seeks to expand mutual understanding between Americans and individuals from other nations through carefully designed short-term visits to the U.S. for current and emerging foreign leaders. We host more than 500 exchange visitors annually through the IVLP, coordinating programs on a range of topics including environmental protection, citizen safety, protecting human rights, combating human trafficking, and many more. Our role is to connect visiting dignitaries with their local professional counterparts for an exchange of ideas and best practices, and to build stronger ties across borders.
IVLP participants are selected by foreign service officers working in American embassies and consulates abroad. Selection is by nomination only, and individuals cannot apply to the IVLP. Individuals are chosen because they have been identified as ‘movers and shakers’ in their community, recognized as pushing the needle forward in a variety of fields.
One such example is Daniel Fermín of Venezuela. In the midst of national economic, political and humanitarian crisis, four Venezuelan activists and human rights defenders including Daniel, made their way to San Diego in October 2016. During their visit, sponsored by the IVLP and administered by the team of the San Diego Diplomacy Council, the group met with NGO leaders, government officials and activists who work to increase civic engagement and reform the electoral process in the U.S.
Our team partnered with LIVE A GREAT STORY to elevate the voice of Daniel Fermín, a bright, brave and influential leader in Venezuela. Daniel Fermín is an activist and sociology researcher and professor, working and living in Caracas to fight for the democratization of his country.
Over 200 current and former Heads of State, 1500 cabinet-level ministers, and many other distinguished world leaders in government and the private sector are also alumni of the US Department of State program. In San Diego, a notable alumna includes Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard.
As a member of Global Ties U.S., a national nonprofit partner of the U.S. Department of State, the San Diego Diplomacy Council serves as the region’s premier coordinator of the IVLP and is one of the top member-based organizations to host participants.
Contact Natalie Maroun, IVLP Program Director at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about the International Visitor Leadership Program.