Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative Fellowship

Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative Fellowship

The Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI) is the U.S. Department of State’s flagship program for emerging entrepreneurs and business leaders from Latin America and the Caribbean. Designed to promote mutual understanding and build a network of young business and social entrepreneurs, the program brings young leaders to the U.S. for entrepreneurial leadership training and fellowships with U.S. companies and social enterprises.

The YLAI Professional Fellows program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government and supported in its implementation by IREX.

young leaders of the americas fellows

The Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI) is the U.S. Department of State’s flagship program for emerging entrepreneurs and business leaders from Latin America and the Caribbean. Designed to promote mutual understanding and build a network of young business and social entrepreneurs, the program brings young leaders to the U.S. for entrepreneurial leadership training and fellowships with U.S. companies and social enterprises.

The YLAI Professional Fellows program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government and supported in its implementation by IREX.

Apply for the Fellowship

Now accepting applications for the 2020 YLAI Professional Fellows Program.

Applications are due September 18, 2019.

Quick Facts

  • Fellows are emerging business or social entrepreneurs between the ages of 25 and 35 who have a demonstrated track record of at least two years of experience with either small and medium sized businesses or social ventures.   
  • The fellowship provides these emerging young leaders with the opportunity to develop their skills at a U.S. business with professional development after they return home.
  • Since the initiative’s launch in 2015, more than 750 YLAI Professional Fellows have expanded their leadership and entrepreneurial experience. 280 will participate in the 2020 YLAI Professional Fellows Program.

Goals

  • Invest in a new generation of young entrepreneurial leaders in the Americas who are shaping the region’s future.
  • Strengthen economic and social development across the Americas through deepening business relationships and connections with the United States.
  • Create a sustainable network of business and social entrepreneurial leaders who foster mutual understanding and increase business ties between the United States and the Americas.

Project Activities

  • Customized curriculum: once accepted into the program, YLAI Fellows begin a journey toward greater entrepreneurial leadership with a customized curriculum designed for them.
  • U.S. fellowship: Fellows sharpen their entrepreneurial leadership through a six-week U.S.-based fellowship with U.S. business leaders. Fellows develop an action plan to enhance their own ventures once they return home.
  • Closing forum in Washington, DC: At the conclusion of the fellowship, YLAI Fellows participate in a closing forum to bridge their U.S. fellowship experience with their return home and cement their new skills into action over the next nine months.

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