Twelve Tibetan students from colleges in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Oklahoma, and Pennsylvania participated in the International Campaign for Tibet’s 2017 Tibetan Youth Leadership Program (TYLP) held in Washington, D.C. from June 3 to 9, 2017.
During their program, they were informed on ways in which Tibetan Americans can play a positive role in the American political process. Invited speakers talked to them about Tibetan activism in the United States; Chinese perspective of the Tibetan issue; US-China relations; role of civil society in shaping American foreign policy; International Campaign for Tibet’s work, etc. They met with members of Congress and staffers as well as with Administration officials in the State Department, as part of their exposure to the U.S. political and foreign policy process. As part of developing their communication skills, participants visited Radio Free Asia and Voice of America, and several of them took part in live and recorded discussions by the Tibetan services on Tibet and their experience in Washington, D.C. The participants visited the Office of Tibet and also had network sessions with Tibetan American professionals in the Washington, D.C. area and shared their experience with high schoolers and middle schoolers.
TYLP is a unique leadership development program organized by ICT for Tibetan-American college students. Participants are selected to join the program based on their academic achievement, leadership potential, and an essay on “What it takes to be a leader in the Tibetan community”.
This year’s participants come from diverse background; four of them were born in Tibet, four in India, and four in the U.S.