Study Abroad: The Path From the Sleepy Suburbs to the Global Stage
 

A promising high school student from Paraguay almost abandons her goal of learning English, only to receive a life-changing opportunity to earn two degrees at a university in Kansas.

A math whiz from Chile moves to California to earn a Ph.D. in aeronautics and eventually becomes a professor at one of the leading universities in Washington, D.C.

And a young woman from the New Jersey suburbs finds her passion for history and politics come alive in the cafes and museums of Argentina and eventually dedicates her career to diplomacy in the Western Hemisphere.

What do all of these stories have in common? They demonstrate the transformative impact of student exchanges between the United States and our neighbors in the Western Hemisphere, which have benefited tens of thousands of individuals and all of our countries over the years.

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U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry meets with Chilean President Sebastian Pinera at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, DC, June 3, 2013. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry delivers remarks with Chilean President Sebastian Pinera at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, DC, June 3, 2013. A text transcript can be found at http://www.state.gov/secretary/remarks/2013/210218.htm

Sixth Meeting of the U.S.-Chile Environmental Affairs Council and Fourth Meeting of the U.S.-Chile Joint Commission for Environmental Cooperation

Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
January 7, 2013


U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs Dr. Kerri-Ann Jones will lead the United States delegation and co-chair the sixth meeting of the U.S.-Chile Free Trade Agreement (FTA) Environmental Affairs Council and fourth meeting of the U.S.-Chile Environmental Cooperation Agreement Joint Commission for Environmental Cooperation in Santiago, Chile on January 9. Acting Assistant Trade Representative for Environment and Natural Resources Jennifer Prescott will co-lead the U.S. delegation at the Council meeting.

Ana Novik, Director of Multilateral Economic Affairs in the Ministry of Foreign Relations’ Directorate for International Economic Relations will co-chair the Council for Chile. The Commission will also be co-chaired by Ambassador José Luis Balmaceda, Director of Environment and Natural Resources in Chile’s Ministry of Foreign Relations. MORE

Smithsonian Exhibit Explores the Plight of Rescued Chilean Miners
Jose Henriquez and Public Diplomacy Officer for the countries of Brazil and the Southern Cone Johanna Villalobos pose for a photo at the exhibition, Against All Odds: Rescue at the Chilean Mine, at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., August 2011. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

About the Author: Johanna Villalobos serves as the Public Diplomacy Officer for the countries of Brazil and the Southern Cone. She managed U.S. messaging as the Chile mine disaster unfolded, and facilitated the follow-up exhibition at the Smithsonian.

On October 13, 2010, at 11:11 a.m., I was captivated by images of human beings deep in the Chilean desert as they emerged from the ground in a simple metal capsule dubbed the “Phoenix.” My emotions overwhelmed me when Florencio Avalos became the first miner rescued after 69 days underground. During that powerful moment, made possible by the collaborative creativity and efforts of people from around the world, I felt I was right there in the desert with those who were present to celebrate the rescue. Still, I had no idea that this event so far away, which captured the hearts and minds of so many, would actually become an integral part of my life.

I have had the opportunity to work with the Smithsonian Institution during the last 10 months in developing an exhibit about the rescue. “Against All Odds: Rescue at the Chilean Mine” highlights the… more »