June 2011

At a reception yesterday on Capitol Hill, Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Judith McHale and Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN) spoke to a group of almost 400 participants of the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) program and distinguished guests, including Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs Ann Stock, and celebrated the students' successful completion of the program.

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► On Tuesday, Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) introduced the Immigration Driving Entrepreneurship in America (IDEA) Act of 2011, which aims at amending "the Immigration and Nationality Act to promote innovation, investment, and research in the United States."

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The New York Times published today an AP article critical of the Department of State’s Summer Work Travel (SWT) program. The article focuses on the proposed new SWT regulations, as well as oversight of sponsors by the Department.

Last Friday, the Department of State announced on its website a grant that has brought 15 young Indonesian female soccer players to the United States in order to build relationships with their American counterparts and coaches.

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As published in the Federal Register last week, the Department of Education has officially cancelled new FY 2011 competitions for the following programs:

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On Tuesday, the Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) announced its first-ever partnership with USA Volleyball, which brought 50 volleyball coaches from Caribbean Nations to the U.S. to allow them "to gain a broader understanding of the culture and sports traditions worldwide."

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In her remarks at the EducationUSA Forum in Washington, DC, yesterday, Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Judith McHale stressed the importance of international education and exchanges for America's competitiveness in the world and described the promotion of study in the United States as "a priority at the highest levels of our government."

Yesterday, the House Judiciary Committee approved an amended bill sponsored by Chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX) that would authorize the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to revoke or refuse a visa to an individual or a class of individuals if DHS deems such action to be in the interest of U.S. national security, according to CQ.com.

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Below please find the listing of Federal Register announcements issued by the U.S. Departments of State, Education, and Homeland Security, and USAID since 06/17/11.

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Twice this week, the Department of State commented on the new regulations for the Summer Work and Travel Program during its Daily Press Briefings.

At the Department of State's Daily Press Briefing on Monday, June 20, Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland was asked whether she was confident that the new regulations for the J-1 Summer Work and Travel program recently proposed by the Department of State will be successful in protecting foreign students from exploitation and prevent abuses.

She said:

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