Programs for Students
The World Affairs Council - Washington, DC offers a variety of programs for students throughout the school year. These programs include Youth Forums, the Young Journalist Program, the Young Ambassadors Program, and Academic WorldQuest. These programs give students in the Washington, DC area the opportunity to develop leadership and teamwork skills, travel and study abroad, gain knowledge of international affairs and important global issues, and meet a variety of influential leaders, experts, and newsmakers.
International Affairs Leadership Academy for High School Students
This year long program begins with a week long summer enrichment program that offers high-school students an opportunity to immerse themselves in the study of international affairs. Held in Washington, DC, the program combines classroom lectures, interactive simulation, and site visits to international organizations, embassies, etc. The institute emphasizes leadership, critical thinking and presentation skills to help prepare the students to interact effectively in an era of globalization.
During the academic year, students (and a designated cooperating teacher) will continue working with the Council to bring speakers and programs into their classrooms. Additionally, students will participate in additional leadership programs designed specifically for the Leadership Academy.
Youth Forum Series
Youth Forums focus on a specific regional of international policy issue and give students a unique opportunity to put themselves in the position of policymakers. Each Forum is attended by over 200 area high school students and their teachers, and explores one of today’s crucial topics.2010: Program Information | Program Agenda | Program Photos
On December 4, 2009, the World Affairs Council held a Youth Leadership Forum on Climate Change for high school students and their teachers at the World Bank headquarters. The program entitled “A Youth Forum on Climate Change; Understanding the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change”, explored the issues facing different nations during the Copenhagen meetings in December. Guest speakers included Ambassador Friis Arne Petersen from Denmark, Angelica Silvero, Head of the World Bank Visitors Program, and Nicholas Sundt, Director of Communications for the Climate Change Program at the World Wildlife Fund. Students participated in a simulation to create a conference resolution while examining the pressures confronting nations and policymakers in this ongoing dialogue on climate change.
On January 30, 2009 the World Affairs Council - DC held a Youth Leadership Forum on the Global Water Crisis for high school students and their teachers at the World Bank here in Washington, DC. The objective for the day was to explore the problems of water shortage and sanitation facing all parts of the world and the challenges of providing sufficient amounts of safe, clean water to the global population. The day-long program included expert speakers including Janeen Heath, Communication and Production Specialist for the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, Dr. Peter Kolsky, a Senior Water and Sanitation Specialist in the Energy, Transport and Water Department of the World Bank, and Lauren J. Krizner, from the US Department of State.
The World Affairs Council of Washington DC in cooperation with the World Bank and Bell Multicultural High School hosted a Youth Leadership Forum on Human Rights and the Crisis in Darfur at the World Bank on January 11, 2008. This day-long event consisted of presentations by expert speakers such as Kenneth Bacon and Melanie Teff from Refugees International, Dr. Peter Bechtold, Colin Thomas-Jensen from ENOUGH, Justin Zorn from Banaa. The event also included question and answer sessions, a simulation to illustrate the difficulties of international cooperation, the complexity of international law and the Darfur region and a resource fair for students. As well, there was a showcasing of an educational presentation put together by the students of Bell Multicultural High School about the ongoing situation in Darfur and potential solutions to alleviate the situation. This presentation by Bell Multicultural High School was later entered into a contest hosted by thepeoplespeak.org, which seeks to engage students in world affairs.
On October 30, 2007, the World Affairs Council - Washington DC and The World Bank hosted a Youth Leadership Forum on Global Poverty. This event sought to explore the problems facing impoverished areas around the world and the challenges of reversing current trends. The program consisted of presentations by expert speakers such as Walter D. Woods from the World Bank’s Community Outreach program, Kyeh Kim from the Millennium Challenge Corporation, Seema Jalan from Women’s Edge, Patrick McCormick from Village Banking, David Roodman from Center for Global Development, Jody Olsen from Peace Corps, Paul Mathis from NetAid, Elise Young from Bread for the World, and Lauren Prince who was the 2006-2007 Global Action Award Honoree. This event also featured a question and answer sessions, a group discussion, and a village development simulation exercise in order to teach students about impoverished areas and what goes into development projects.
Young Ambassador Program Costa Rica Trip
Each year the World Affairs Council - Washington, DC awards a small number of scholarships to outstanding DC high school students. While these trips touch a small group of students, they leave a lasting mark and widen horizons of these young people forever.
Speakers for Schools
If you are interested in having a guest speaker on a international issues related to classroom studies, the World Affairs Council - Washington, D.C. would be happy to assist you in finding a speaker. Please fill out this request form and submit it to Amanda Stamp, Global Education Director, or fax it to 202.293.3467.
Academic WorldQuest is a Flagship Program of the World Affairs Council system. The game was developed by the Charlotte Council and is now widely played at the adult and high school levels around the country. It is a team game testing competitors' knowledge of international affairs, geography, history, and culture. By winning the World Affairs Council of Washington, DC competition, the winning team qualifies to compete in the World Affairs Councils of America’s national competition in Washington, DC. The World Affairs Councils of America started the national competition in Washington, DC in March 2003.
The game is a contest between 4-person teams representing a high school or city. It is moderated by a prominent person in the field of international affairs or journalism. Teams compete by answering rounds of questions projected by PowerPoint onto a screen. The questions test their knowledge of current affairs, world leaders, geography, recent history, flags, international organizations, countries, regions, the world economy, culture, religion, and more. A full competition is 100 questions, 10 rounds of 10 questions per round. The winning team is the team with the highest number of correct answers.