Pacific Islands Young Economic Empowerment Leaders

A Special Professional Fellows Program Opportunity for Young Economic Empowerment Leaders

THEME: Post-Pandemic Equitable and Sustainable Economic Recovery

The East-West Center's Professional Development Program, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and Young Pacific Leaders (Facebook page), is conducting a Special Professional Fellows Program Opportunity for Young Economic Empowerment Leaders from the Pacific Islands. Starting in early 2023, this program will bring three cohorts of young professionals from the Pacific Islands to the United States for intensive five-week programs that build significant new capacity and facilitate enduring professional bonds between industry leaders in the United States and the Pacific Islands. 

Image: Professional Fellows visit the Hawaii State Capitol

Professional Fellows (aged 25-40) are chosen through an open competition which highlights their demonstrated commitment to improving their communities through innovative economic development approaches. A particular emphasis is placed on selecting individuals with social entrepreneurial talents geared towards helping their communities emerge from the global COVID-19 pandemic and building resilience to future economic shocks.

Selected Fellows are assigned to customized work-placements in the U.S. that will offer them fresh insights, new analytical perspectives, and practical approaches to address the challenges their communities are facing and identify opportunities for economic empowerment. Supplemental educational and cultural enrichment activities will ensure Fellows acquire substantive leadership skills as well as a deeper appreciation of American society.

Current plans are for the first cohort of Fellows to be in the United States from February 12-March 18, 2023. Note: The in-person, U.S.-based program is contingent upon favorable travel conditions. In the event of travel restrictions, or others factors which could adversely impact the health, safety and welfare of program participants and hosts, the program will pivot the in-person, U.S.-based exchange to virtual programming.

This is a program of the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government, administered by the East-West Center.