Exchange Matters / July 22, 2021

2020 Photo Contest

Congratulations to the following individuals for their stellar images capturing the spirit and impact of international exchange programs across the U.S. Make sure to check out the images on display at the 2020 National Meeting.

Best Overall Photo: Women in STEM Fly Delta


As part of the “Hidden No More: Empowering Women in STEM Fields” International Visitor Leadership Program, these women flew Delta Airlines to Huntsville, AL and were treated like royalty by the Delta crew when they heard who the women were! The group included an aeronautical engineer from Zambia and another engineer from the Bolivian Space Agency.

Program: International Visitor Leadership Program – Hidden No More
Submitted by: Leesa Fields, International Visitor Liaison


Best Community Connection Shot: A Taste of American Entrepreneurship


Women entrepreneurs from Latin America sample baked goods from Stone Ground Bakery, a female-owned company in Salt Lake City, UT.

Program: WE Americas Program for Women Entrepreneurs

Submitted by: Gary Crofts, Program Officer, Utah Council for Citizen Diplomacy


Best Community Service Shot: Palestinians Building Connections & Model Homes

Group Photo BuildingTrades

Palestinian teachers and guidance counselors exploring vocational programs and schools as alternatives to college in New York state.

Program: International Visitor Leadership Program – U.S. College Admissions

Submitted by: Ryan Moll, Executive Director (former), International Center of the Capital Region

Best Group Selfie Shot: Husker Nation Goes Global


In Nebraska, you never forget your first Huskers football tailgating party! Visitors from Argentina, Canada, Denmark, Israel, the Netherlands, and New Zealand, along with members of the Lincoln Council for International Visitors, kick things off with a selfie before getting ready to party with the governor of Nebraska at the tailgate hosted at the Governor’s Mansion.

Program: International Visitor Leadership Program – U.S. Foreign Policy Decision Making
Submitted by: Crystal Bock Thiessen, President, Lincoln Council for International Visitors


Best Action Shot: Jumping on the Point


Looking out at the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers, visitors from Barbados, Burma, Colombia, Israel, Suriname, and Taiwan leap from the fountain at Point State Park in Pittsburgh, PA.

Program: International Visitor Leadership Program – Promoting Social Change Through the Arts II
Submitted by: David Shaw, International Visitor Liaison


Best Hands-On Skills: Mentoring is Internationally Understood


When young leaders from El Salvador showed up in Linwood, KS to volunteer following the destruction of an F4 tornado, local homeowner and first responder Mr. Robinson taught exchange participants to use tools for the first time.

Program: U.S. Department of State On Demand Youth Leadership program (Theme: Emergency Management )
Submitted by: Courtney Brooks, Executive Director, Global Ties KC


Most Artistic Shot: Down On The Farm


A visitor from Sri Lanka meets dairy cows during a visit to the Howrigan family farm in Vermont.

Program: International Visitor Leadership Program – Cross Border Trade in South Asia
Submitted by: Jonathan Christ, International Visitor Liaison


Staff Pick: IVLP at Mendenhall Glacier


An international visitor from Canada takes in the falls at Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau, AK.

Program: International Visitor Leadership Program – Search and Rescue in the Arctic
Submitted by: Leesa Fields, International Visitor Liaison