YSEALI Academic Fellowship on Environmental Issues


The Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) is a signature program of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) in order to strengthen leadership development across the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), deepen engagement with young leaders on key regional and global challenges, and strengthen people-to-people ties between the United States and Southeast Asia.

Launched in 2013, the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) for youth leaders on Environmental Issues is an integral portion of the Academic Fellowship component of the greater YSEALI program, which is funded by the U.S. Government and administered by the East-West Center and our implementation partner the University of Montana Mansfield Center. Participants are undergraduates or recent graduates from ASEAN member countries (Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam) and Timor-Leste, who are competitively selected by U.S. Embassies in Southeast Asia. The YSEALI Academic Fellowship on Environmental Issues at the East-West Center is a five-week experiential academic program with lectures, panels, seminar discussions, competitions, debates, and site visits. Fellows live and study at the East-West Center and University of Hawai’i, University of California Berkeley, University of California Merced, Yosemite National Park, and conclude with programming in Washington, D.C.

The YSEALI Academic Fellows are trained in facilitating innovation challenges, accelerator programs, award competitions, and arts initiatives in climate change, ocean protection, renewable energy, pollution remediation, public health and safety, sustainable development, conservation, sustainable agricultural practices, food security, and water access, management and treatment. Issues are explored from numerous angles, including local grassroots activism and civic initiatives, impacts on marginalized communities, global multilateral efforts, the private sector, and government policies and regulation. The ultimate goal is for participants to explore climate change and environmental issues in the context of a globalized society, and draw comparisons between the United States and the participants’ home countries. This map shares the profiles and backgrounds of all YSEALI fellows who completed the EWC program.


View the eight (8) debates run in collaboration with Breaking Silos for the  YSEALI-EWC Virtual Institute Spring 2021.


YSEALI program materials




Program Contact

Lance C. Boyd
Director of YSEALI Academic Fellowship at EWC and Senior Experiential Leadership Education Specialist
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (808) 944-7477