When we think of international diplomacy, we might imagine heads of state at official meetings, but in fact everyone can (and should) engage in diplomacy, even while social distancing during COVID-19. Public diplomacy, also referred to as people’s diplomacy, 描述了政府资助的旨在直接与外国公众沟通的努力.” Essentially, 公共外交是在各国人民之间搭建理解的桥梁, not only government-to-government relations. This also includes virtual exchange! 现代技术使我们比以往任何时候都更能与不同国家的人们建立和保持联系. As we adjust to quarantining, 我们可以拥抱数字连接,并感到有能力与我们的政府一起成为公共外交官.

Traditionally, 公共外交的目的是促进国家利益和推进外交政策目标. According to the USC Center of Public Diplomacy, “Public diplomacy includes such activities as educational exchange programs for scholars and students; visitor programs; language training; cultural events and exchanges; and radio and television broadcasting. 这类活动通常侧重于改善“发送国”的形象或声誉,以此来塑造“接收国”更广泛的政策环境.” Historically, 跨文化交流项目已成为公共外交的范例,以促进文化理解和和平外交政策. That’s why President John F. Kennedy met with 美高梅4858app students at the White House 在20世纪60年代早期:他认识到学生交换是公共外交的力量.

Since then, 公共外交的定义已经扩大到包括各种努力, both formal and informal, 在不同国家的人们之间培养有意义的联系,解构刻板印象. 公共外交现在已包括希望在全球范围内建立相互积极关系的非政府行为者和机构.

How 美高梅4858app-USA Engages in Public Diplomacy

作为一个通过提供有意义的跨文化体验,使人们能够成为全球公民的组织, public diplomacy is what we do at 美高梅4858app. 这是我们履行使命的方式,为人们提供所需的知识和技能,帮助创建一个更公正、更和平的世界.

我们的创始人在第一次世界大战和第二次世界大战中担任志愿救护车司机后,认识到文化交流可以促进和平. As the United Nations 他解释说:“世界上四分之三的主要冲突都与文化有关.” Both by hosting foreign exchange students in the U.S. and sending U.S. students abroad, we facilitate ongoing dialogues, cultural learning, 以及各国之间的友谊,这有助于避免可能导致冲突的误解. 交流对我们来说是双向的——“发送国”和“接收国”都能从多元化的视角和打破有害的文化偏见中获益.

不同文化的人们之间具体而有意义的联系产生了涟漪效应,并深入到社区中, schools, and families on both sides of the exchange. That’s public diplomacy in action. While the macro is important, it’s the micro that matters more. Simple conversations, 与来自不同文化背景的人共享一辆车或一顿饭,或者通过Skype打电话——正是这些小小的互动积累了深厚的关系和对多样性的尊重. That’s how we create peaceful global citizens.

As Emir Hasanovic, a 2009 YES student from Macedonia who spent a year in Minnesota, phrased it:

你把人们放在一个房间里,你把人们放在象棋俱乐部里. That’s how you bring people together,” he said. “这是打破刻板印象的方法……你可以拥有世界上最大的国防预算。,” he added. “Ultimately, your biggest assets are the people.

Currently, 美高梅4858app-USA works in partnership with the U.S. 国务院教育和文化事务局将实施四个高中交流项目,将国际参与者带到美高梅集团app下载.S. and/or send U.S. students abroad:

  • Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES): 肯尼迪-卢格青年交流与学习(YES)项目是美高梅集团app下载国务院在“9·11”恐怖袭击后发起的. 它的目的是在美高梅集团app下载人和穆斯林人口众多或具有战略重要性的国家的人民之间建立理解的桥梁. Scholarships are also available for U.S. high school students to go abroad through the YES Abroad program.
  • National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y): 国家安全青年语言倡议(NSLI-Y)项目于2006年启动,旨在促进美高梅集团app下载青年的重要语言学习. NSLI-Y项目鼓励终生的语言学习和文化理解,提供超过650个夏季和学年成绩为基础的奖学金. Participants receive intensive language instruction, live with a host family for all or part of the program, and participate in community service and a variety of cultural activities.
  • Congress Bundestag Youth Exchange (CBYX): Initiated in 1983, 国会和联邦议院的青年交流(CBYX)项目是由美高梅集团app下载联邦政府联合资助和管理的.S. and German governments. CBYX provides 350 scholarships for U.S. high school students, high school graduates in vocational fields, and young professionals for an academic year home-stay program.
  • Future Leaders Exchange (FLEX): Established in 1992, 未来领导人交流(FLEX)项目致力于增进相互了解,发展和加强美高梅集团app下载公民之间的长期关系.S. and citizens of the countries of Eastern Europe and Eurasia. 该项目支持21个东欧和欧亚国家高中生赴美高梅集团app下载交流.S. for a year-long, academic homestay experience.

We all can get involved, whether by welcoming an international student, living abroad, engaging in virtual exchange, or supporting intercultural exchange in our communities. 虽然我们都希望和渴望见面,但我们仍然可以参与公共外交. We all can be cultural ambassadors and diplomats of the people. 因为这就是公共外交的重点——那些将改变政府的人, policies, and, ultimately, the world.