Experiential Professional Development (XPD)


Founded in 2020, we specialize in cooperative capacity building with local partners and are organized around four (4) core initiatives for university students and young professionals. Scroll down to learn more and be sure to explore our interactive maps and links. 

Innovation for Sustainable Development Initiative (#EWCinnovation)

The EWC Innovation for Sustainable Development Initiative (#EWCInnovation) is an initiative to advance the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and is officially recognized by the United Nations as an SDG Acceleration Action (#SDGAction37761). Partners under this initiative offer a digital credential in innovation, locally tailored professional development, a non-residential fellowship a webinar series about innovation, and accelerate progress on ambitious goals by hosting innovation challenges

This flagship program under this initiative known as the #EWCInnovationFellows, non-resident fellows co-design and co-deliver live and virtual innovative programs and events across Asia and the Americas accelerating progress towards the SDGs for the EWC within their organization, company or University. Fellows are young professionals and EWC Alumni (under age 40) in the arts, environment, education, health, and disaster resilience sectors supported in five (5) modules delivered virtually over the course of five (5) months. 

 Co-directorsDoris Carini and Lance C. Boyd

Southeast Asian Ocean Professionals Program    (#EWCSEAOPP)

Photo Credit: Irwan Hermawan

The Southeast Asian Ocean Professionals Program (#EWCSEAOPP), is a ten-year regional initiative officially endorsed as a UNESCO Ocean Decade Action to elevate and strengthen the diverse perspectives of new generations of ocean professionals through a collective voice, ensuring that knowledge is transferred between experienced and early-career ocean professionals to promote ocean sustainability for “The Ocean We Want” for the Ocean Decade (2021- 2030). Partners under this initiative offer the Blue Economy Challenge with the US Embassy Tokyo and Innodays.org, a Blue Tech Accelerator Program, along with virtual bootcamps. Click here to learn about becoming a member of this initiative and eligible for its programs.

The flagship program under this initiative known as the Ocean Research Corps (#EWCoceancorps), will respond to UNESCO’s call to “change how we finance and conduct ocean research” by training 100 young researchers in 100 different communities across Southeast Asia for the Ocean Decade. Corps researchers will be Early Career Ocean Professionals (with less than 10 years’ experience) on one-year, non-residential EWC research intern posts and embedded in their local communities and affiliated with a local University, NGO, or business.

Co-directors: Amalina Ariffin and Lance C. Boyd


Young Digital Media Professionals Initiative (#EWCDigitalPros)

Photo Credit: Visayas University, Philippines

The Young Digital Media Professionals Initiative (#EWCDigitalPros) trains, equips, and connects young professionals and students from Southeast Asia and the Americas with digital media literacy, best practices, and knowledge of trends and tools to effectively and ethically leverage digital media to achieve positive social, economic, and environmental outcomes. Digital media refers to digitized information transmitted over the internet and includes digital video, websites, social media, digital audio, electronic books among others. Partners under this initiative offer a digital credential in Digital Media, a non-residential internship with the East-West Center, a webinar series with Breaking Silos, an awards program with Conservation Optimism (#ConservationOptimism), along with virtual events leveraging digital media. 

 Co-Directors: Sofiah Jamil and Amalina Ariffin


Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (#yseali) 

YSEALI 2019 Fall cohort The Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative  (#yseali) is a U.S. Department of State sponsored program that seeks to strengthen leadership development and networking in Southeast Asia by engaging promising young leaders on critical topics in the region. Under the Mansfield Center's umbrella, the University of Montana and the East-West Center annually train 42 Southeast Asian young leaders ages 18-25 virtually and in the United States in the YSEALI Academic Fellowship on Environmental Issues.

Cohorts of 21 fellows whose average age is 21 complete a 21 week curriculum with 21 books to read. Some current books include: The Synthetic Age, Clean Meat, Leading from the Roots, A Bright Future, A New Climate Story, California Greenin', and Factfulness. ​​Click here to learn about becoming a member of this initiative and eligible for its programs.

The East-West Center has also hosted Institutes on Environmental Issues Global Cohorts (Brazil, China, Japan, Russia, Turkey) and Institutes on Environmental Issues Middle East Cohorts (Jordan, Palestinian Territories).