February 2024 at WorldBoston

February at WorldBoston

Dear Friends,

This time of year, we ask, How do we love you?  

Shall WorldBoston count the ways?

We love you to the depth of the Porter T station, and to the breadth of a Charlestown lawn-chair parking spot in the snow.

We also love:

  • The 6000, and growing, social media followers of WorldBoston
  • The 3000 regular readers of our Newsletter (why, hello there!)
  • The community members who account for over 4000 event registrations annually, engaging with our programs and other attendees
  • The almost 400 professionals who volunteer annually to share best practices with nearly 1000 international visitors
  • The 30 Dinner Diplomats who welcomed visitors to their homes for meals and conversation
  • And, of course, the 80 generous sponsors and donors who make our mission possible

This February, plus all this love, you’ll see below that we also have essential speaking programs as well as extraordinary delegations whose topics seemingly come straight from headline news.

So, as ever, we hope to see you soon.

Mary P. Yntema

President & CEO

Help WorldBoston bring the world to you!

As a non-profit organization, WorldBoston relies on community support to deliver our mission of fostering engagement in international affairs and cooperation between people of all nations.

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Updates from the Office

This month, we are thrilled to welcome a new member to the WorldBoston team. Harrison Zeiberg joins us as Community Engagement Manager. This role is a new position, and we are excited about the opportunities we will be able to take on with our expanded team. Read more about Harrison below, and be sure to say hello at our upcoming events!

Harrison Zeiberg joins the WorldBoston team in February 2024 as the Community Engagement Manager.

Previously Harrison served as Field Director for a local political campaign in his home city of Malden, and prior to that he served as an SCI AmeriCorps Member at the Network for Social Justice. As an SCI AmeriCorps Member, Harrison was involved in running a high school internship program along with the planning and execution of 20 community events.

Harrison holds a B.A. in History and Political Science from Wheaton College (MA) and is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa and Pi Sigma Alpha academic honor societies. In his free time he likes to creatively write and is an avid reader.

Power and Progress | Daron Acemoglu

Thursday, February 15, 6:00 – 7:30 PM

Hybrid Event at Foley & Lardner LLP

Join us for this installment of our popular Chat & Chowder series, featuring Daron Acemoglu, Institute Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, to discuss his new book, Power and Progress: Our Thousand-Year Struggle Over Technology and Prosperity.

This program is sold out in-person, but you can still attend virtually!


High Seas Treaties | Dr. Steven Wills

Thursday, February 29, 6:00 – 7:30 PM

Hybrid Event at GBH Studios, Yawkey Theater

From shipping lanes to marine conservation, the high seas are at the center of geopolitical and strategic interests for countries around the world. How are maritime territories governed, and how are political disputes resolved? What can be done to improve cooperation on the high seas?

Join us for a timely discussion of these questions and more with Dr. Steven Wills, Navalist at the Center for Maritime Strategy. The program will feature expert remarks from Dr. Wills, live audience Q&A, and time for networking and discussion with other globally-oriented participants.

This program is free and open to the public, but advance registration is required. This program will be hosted at GBH Studios, not at the Boston Public Library.


But wait… there’s more!

You can view and register for upcoming events in March and beyond on our website calendar here.

Academic WorldQuest

Academic WorldQuest, the World Affairs Councils of America’s flagship youth education program, is a fun, fast-paced, team-oriented global knowledge competition for high school students. WorldBoston will host the 2024 Massachusetts-wide competition on Saturday, March 23rd, at Emmanuel College. Any high school in Massachusetts can enter a team (or up to 3 teams) of 4 students with an adult advisor — participation is completely free. WorldBoston will send the winning team to Washington, DC for the National Competition — all travel expenses paid!

We have reached capacity for Academic WorldQuest 2024, but we are working to find space for additional teams! If you’re interested in participating, please contact Natalie Mase, Director of Operations and Global Engagement Programs.


WorldBoston Event Reporting Opportunity

Interested in international affairs and journalism? Then volunteer to report on WorldBoston’s Global Engagement events! The selected reporter will write an event recap for our website blog. For more information and terms please email Natalie Mase, Director of Operations and Global Engagement Programs.

To learn more about Global Engagement, contact Natalie Mase, Director of Operations and Global Engagement Programs.

Citizen Diplomacy


Every year, Global Ties U.S. hosts a competition among its Community Based Members (like WorldBoston) for photos that capture the spirit and impact of international exchange programs. We’re pleased to share that WorldBoston is among the winners! In addition to giving us bragging rights, the photo will be displayed at the 2024 Global Ties U.S. National Meeting in Washington DC in early March.

Below is the photo that won the “Home Hospitality” category. Pictured is an international visitor presenting traditional gifts from Togo to our wonderful community members Don and Ellen Brown during their Thanksgiving celebration in Plymouth. The Browns generously opened their home to 14 visitors to give them an authentic and memorable experience on this special American holiday. Thank you to the Brown family!

This February, WorldBoston hosts six projects through the U.S. Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP).

Harnessing New Technologies For Growth

A Single Country Project for Zimbabwe

Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Veterans in the United States

A Single Country Project for Ukraine

Diversifying University Partnerships

A Single Country Project for Mexico

Social Media Strategies for Building Community Resilience

A Single Country Project for India

Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development

A Regional Project for Eurasia

Social Entrepreneurs in the United States

A Multi-Regional Project

We welcome your thoughts and ideas for in-person programming. If you have suggestions, please contact Vice President for Citizen Diplomacy, Sarah Sibley.

Custom Visitor Programs: Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative

WorldBoston will host 14 fellows participating in the Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative in Boston between March 7th and April 11th. We are very excited to welcome this delegation, many of whom are executives at their companies. As part of this program, WorldBoston will place each fellow at a Boston-based institution for a four-week period to collaborate on projects, learn business best practices to apply to their own companies, and foster a global connection beyond their short time in Boston.

We can use your help to prepare for their arrival. Of the 14 fellows, 12 have been placed, but 2 remain! Estefania Alexandra Yanez Schmidt from Ecuador is the CEO of Aura, an online firm that provides artisans and local furniture businesses with affordable interior design and a faster way to connect to clients. Natalia Andrea Cortés Morales from Chile is the co-founder of Fitchain, a company that facilitates connections between suppliers and carriers and supports digital transformation and cargo consolidation.

If you or a company you know may be interested in hosting these fellows, please contact Director of Citizen Diplomacy Programs, Joshua Bruno.

Funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), and implemented by IREX and WorldBoston, the Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI) Fellowship Program is the flagship program for emerging entrepreneurs and business leaders from the Western Hemisphere. To learn more about YLAI, visit YLAI.state.org.

Fulbright Visiting Scholars Enrichment Program

On February 10th, Fulbright Visiting Scholars and their families will visit The Perkins School for the Blind, a pioneer in disability-inclusive education. The purpose of this visit is to learn about the evolution of disability education in the United States, as well as educational opportunities for people with visual impairments or other disabilities. The school’s head librarian, Jennifer Arnott, will lead scholars on a tour of the campus and deliver a presentation on the history of Perkins. 

This Fulbright Enrichment activity is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government and supported in its implementation by the Institute of International Education (IIE), and WorldBoston.

Become A Community Supporter

Now more than ever, WorldBoston relies on the support of sponsors and community members to fulfill our mission. Donors who contribute $25 – $999 are proudly recognized on our website as Community Supporters. And, donors of $1,000 and above enjoy year-round sponsorship benefits; see a current listing of our generous sponsors here.

We are grateful for all of our 2023 Community Supporters, and we encourage you to contribute in the new year to become a 2024 Community Supporter. Donors will receive this year’s new pin to recognize their support!

Below are new Community Supporters in the past month — we thank them and hope that you will join. You can make a tax-deductible donation on our website at any time.

Sanjay Aggarwal, Tedd Carr, Alexandra Crean, Joe Haynes, and Mary Yntema

Check your inbox every Friday for WorldBoston Recommends – our staff picks for high-quality virtual programs on global topics in the coming week.

Missed any of our recent events? You can find video recordings of our events on our YouTube channel! Below are links to recent events:

Don’t forget to subscribe to our channel for updates!
Thank you to our partners at GBH Forum Network, who edit and publish many of WorldBoston’s recordings. Be sure to check out their YouTube Channel and video archives!

Wait, Did You Miss Something?

Don’t forget to check our News section for announcements and past newsletters. 

And for the latest, be sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram!

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The International Visitors Leadership Program (IVLP) is the U.S. Department of State’s premier professional exchange program and WorldBoston’s main citizen diplomacy partner. Launched in 1940, the IVLP is a professional exchange program that seeks to build mutual understanding between the U.S. and other nations through carefully designed short-term visits to the U.S. for current and emerging foreign leaders. These visits reflect the International Visitors’ professional interests and support the foreign policy goals of the United States.
The U.S. Department of State’s bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs administers the IVLP. In doing so, the bureau enters cooperative agreements with National Program Agencies, a group of private, not-for-profit organizations based in Washington, D.C., that design and implement national IVLP itineraries. In addition to the National Program Agencies, the IVLP relies on the commitment and skills of local community organizations across the U.S., known as Community Based Members (CBMs). Under the professional association of Global Ties U.S., local CBM members develop professional programs, arrange cultural activities, and provide home hospitality for international visitors.
WorldBoston is part of the Global Ties Network of more than 90 CBMs in 45 states.
WorldBoston is a member of the World Affairs Councils of America,
a network of more than 90 independent Councils in more than 40 states.

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