Alliance Commentary

Analysis of the latest news around Washington, D.C. and the exchange community from Alliance staff and members.

Reflections from the Future: Angela Zheng, Global Ties U.S.

Angela was first exposed to international exchange as a Gilman Critical Language scholar in 2019. That interest blossomed she learned more about public and citizen diplomacy during her internship with Global Ties U.S. in 2022. She first learned about the Alliance as part of her advocacy onboarding training in 2022 and had her first in-person interaction at the Alliance Annual Conference. It was eye-opening to meet with representatives from such a wide spectrum of international exchange organizations.

International Education by the Numbers: 2022 SEVP Data shows programs in recovery

A new SEVIS by the Numbers report shows that there were 276,723 active J-1 exchange visitors came to the U.S. in 2022, an increase of 15% from the previous year’s figure of 240,479. This report from the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) also highlights other key data illustrating information and trends on F and M international students studying in the United States.

Member Op-Ed: With Virtual Exchange, Young People are Changing the World

How much better off would our world be if we could harness the passion and potential of the world’s youth? Through virtual exchange, children in New York City’s public schools have learned game design in lockstep with peers in Bahrain. Latino high school students in San Antonio have partnered with fellow students in Libya to create actionable pollution solutions for India’s Ganges River, and rural community college students have had worldview-expanding experiences getting to know peers in Iraq.

2022 Midterm Election Analysis

After weeks of counting, the majority of races in the 2022 midterms have been decided, allowing for a clearer picture of what the 118th Congress will look like come January. What follows are our thoughts on the election results and their implications for the international exchange community.

2022 Stevens Initiative Report: A Survey of Virtual Exchange

As part of International Education Week, the Stevens Initiative at the Aspen Institute released a comprehensive report on their survey of the virtual exchange field. Before diving into the data, the report highlights some of the Stevens Initiative’s overarching best practices in virtual exchange, which include intentionality and a focus on collaboration and reciprocity of knowledge and learning.

2022 Open Doors Report: What’s Next for International Education?

Every year at the beginning of International Education Week, the Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange is released by the Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) and the Institute of International Education (IIE). This report provides an in-depth examination of the international student and study abroad landscape. As we amplify international education and exchange stories throughout the week, the Open Doors data grounds these narratives and speaks to the larger trends in the field.

What the Biden National Security Strategy Means for Exchanges

PDAS Weinhold drew attention to the Biden Administration’s recently-released National Security Strategy. This strategy, he noted, will act as “a guiding document for ECA priorities.” The strategy is broad ranging, touching on an array of U.S. foreign policy and “national power” elements, from diplomacy to defense, development to intelligence. There are three key elements of the strategy that jump out as most related to, and most important for the growth of, international exchange programs.